Venice and other cities are proposing to add the Italian lace to the Lists of Intangible Cultural Heritage of the UNESCO, in order to facilitate its protection.
Today endangered, the local lace was once one of the finest possessions in Europe.
The most famous lace in the world, the Merletto di Burano, increased in popularity at the end of the XV century, and by the ‘600, it was a possession of the richest European families and kings. Richard III and the Tudors, the De’ Medici, even Louis XIV, the Sun King, demanded to own a masterpiece from the “merlettaie” of Burano.
The origin of the Merletto di Burano is thought, by the historians, to be a natural consequence of the fact that, since the earliest settlement in Burano, the female population of the island was used to fix, by hand, the nets of the Buranelli fishermen. If this explanation seems reasonable, the population, nevertheless, explains the origin of the Merletto di Burano, through a Legend. Let us count it to you.
A bridegroom from Burano fishing in the open sea, encountered some mermaids trying to seduce him but managed to resist their voices. The queen of the mermaids, amazed by his faithfulness, decided to reward him with a beautiful gift: she hit the side of his ship with her tail and the extremely fine and light foam she created became the wedding veil for the bride. When the women of Burano saw the exquisite veil at the wedding, they decided to do their best to craft by themselves something that would be as beautiful and as light as the mermaid’s gift.
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