Did you know that the word "ghetto" is Venetian and derives from the Jewish ghetto in the Cannaregio area? Closed Jewish ghettoes were found in all Italian cities where Jews lived, with the exception of relatively enlightened Livorno, where they were assigned certain streets.
This year will mark 500 years from the establishment of the Venice ghetto. The city is preparing a commemoration with an exhibition at the Doge's Palace, from June 19th to November 13th. There will also be The Merchant of Venice in the ghetto itself during the last week of July (for more information see The Merchant in Venice site here.)
Find out more about the ghetto in this article in today's New York Times.