The haunted island of poveglia (Warning: this is scary stuff!)

Brian White, Pinterest

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In the South Lagoon, between Venice and Lido, lies the small Italian island of Poveglia. This island has been abandoned since the 1960’s due to its haunted and evil history.

Escaping from barbaric invaders ravaging the mainland, in 421, Poveglia’s first inhabitants arrived. For centuries, the island lived in peace, and its small size made it defendable. The citizens were fortunate enough to avoid laws and taxes from the mainland.

In the 14th century, the islands population dramatically decreased because of the bubonic plague that arrived in Venice and Poveglia in 1348. Poveglia quickly became a quarantine colony. The bubonic plague had killed 1/3 of all Europeans and there was little to no chance of survival. The center of the small Italian island became a dumping ground for dead or alive plague victims. The dead were dumped into pits where they were burned. Venice exiled any citizen with outward symptoms, to the point where ‘suspects’  were ripped from their homes and taken to the center of the island to be set ablaze among piles of rotting corpses. Most of the victims were too ill to protest against this insanity. Nearly over 10 000 mainlanders from Venice were burned in these giant pyres.

In the late 1800’s to the early 1900’s, the mentally ill were situated in an asylum built in Poveglia. The asylum was poorly constructed and used for exile more than rehabilitation. Patients in the hospital immediately began to report that they were seeing the ghosts of plague victims. At night, patients would be kept up by the screams and wails of horror from the suffering spirits. A doctor who worked in the asylum, decided to perform very weird experiments, to cure the insanity of his patients. He performed many lobotomies with tools like hand drills, chisels and hammers. After his experiments, he took all his patients up to the bell tower one by one, where he would torture them, and experiment on them, and they were forced to experience these many inhumane horrors. Later the insane doctor began to hear the tortured plague victims himself. It drove him so crazy that he threw himself from the top of the bell tower. A nurse who was nearby claimed that the fall did not kill him, but a dark mist came up from the ground and choked him to death. The bell tower was removed decades ago, but some say they can still hear the chimes from the tower.

The Italian government sold the island but the owner abandoned it during the sixties. Italian construction workers attempted to restore the hospital building, but stopped unexpectedly without explanation. Many believe they were driven away by the island’s ghosts and dark forces. Earlier on, Napoleons military campaign relied on the islands haunted history and ghostly legends to hide weapons and gunpowder.

Today the island remains abandoned and off limits to visitors. Fishermen steer clear of the island in fear of catching human remains. Although the island looks oddly well-maintained and has a beautiful heritage appeal, Poveglia hosted so many body-burnings that–it is said–50% of the islands soil is human ash. Poveglia is now considered the darkest place on the earth, and in my opinion, the most twisted and disgusting place in the world.

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