The Moment

12|02|08: Venice

For a thousand years, venice's fate has been inextricably tied to water: the city famous for its canals is even shaped like a fish, with an imposing tail bifurcating at the Isola di San Pietro. Over the centuries, the Venetians' empire-building navies gave them grandiose reason to stage an annual Marriage with the Sea--the doge on board a gilded galley flinging a ring into the lagoon in mythic matrimony. Last week, however, the sea wanted more than a ring: the Adriatic appeared to be reeling in all of Venice itself, grabbing at it with the worst floods La Serenissima has seen...