PICTURES: Venice "Ancestor" City Revealed

PICTURES: Venice
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Study leader Andrea Ninfo (right), of the University of Padua in Italy, conducts ground checks of data collected via aerial photographs of fields maize and soy that now cover the remains of the ancient Roman city of Altinum.

Altinum once thrived on the Italian mainland, whereas nearby Venice was built centuries later on islands in the Laguna Veneta, which is separated by barrier islands from the Adriatic Sea.

Although the two cities are miles apart, the study authors consider Altinum to have been an ancestor of Venice. People from the ancient port town likely colonized islands in the lagoon to escape invaders, proving the islands a safe haven and eventually giving rise to the famed Italian city.

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—Photograph courtesy P. Mozzi, University of Padua
 
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