"Lazareto" redirects here. For other uses, see Lazareto (disambiguation).
"Lazaret" redirects here. For the Romanian village, see Boiţa.
for the refugee camp and suburb of Niamey, see Lazaret, Niger

A lazaretto or lazaret is a quarantine station for maritime travellers. Lazarets can be ships permanently at anchor, isolated islands, or mainland buildings. Until 1908, lazarets were also used for disinfecting postal items, usually by fumigation.[1] A leper colony administered by a Christian religious order was often called a lazar house, after the parable of Lazarus the Beggar.

Lazarettos throughout history

In 1726, a lazaretto was built on Manoel Island located in Malta. Its remains are still standing.

Lazaretto Island (formerly known as Aghios Dimitrios) is located two nautical miles north-east of Corfu (39°38′28″N 19°55′26″E / 39.641°N 19.924°E / 39.641; 19.924). In the early 16th century, when Corfu was under Venetian rule, a monastery was established on the islet. Later that century, the island was renamed Lazaretto, after the leprosarium that was set up there. In 1798, when the French ruled Corfu, the Russo-Turkish fleet took over the islet and ran it as a military hospital. In 1814, during the British occupation, the leprosarium was renovated and went into operation again. After the Ionian Islands were united with Greece (1864), the leprosarium only operated when needed.

Lazaretto Islet survives on Ithaca and another on Zakynthos.

Fidra, an uninhabited island in the Firth of Forth in eastern Scotland, has the ruins of an old chapel, dedicated to St. Nicholas, which was used as a lazaretto.[2]

During the Nazi occupation of Poland, the German-run Treblinka extermination camp had a pit where new arrivals who were severely ill would be shot; the staff's euphemistic name for this area was the lazaret.

As of 2002, one of the few remaining lazarets in Europe is the one in Dubrovnik.[3]

In the United States, the Philadelphia Lazaretto was built in 1799 as a response to the 1793 yellow fever outbreak.[4]

Lazzaretto in Italy

The first lazaret was established by Venice in 1423[5] on Santa Maria di Nazareth (also called "Nazaretum" or "Lazaretum", today "Lazzaretto Vecchio"), an island in the Venetian Lagoon. 45°24′22″N 12°21′36″E / 45.406°N 12.36°E / 45.406; 12.36[6] Additionally there is Lazzaretto Nuovo, also in the lagoon.

Pope Clement XII commissioned the architect Vanvitelli to design and build the Lazzaretto of Ancona at the south end of the Ancona harbor.

See also

External links

  • in Venice, the first lazaretto in the World (in Italian)


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