The church of saints Cosmo e Damiano was constructed in the early 1500's and officially consecrated in 1583.
The church took decades to build and was dedicated to the twin doctors Cosma and Damiano, who rose to sainthood for providing free medical services to the poor.
The church served the cloistered nuns of the adjacent Benedictine convent founded in 1481 by the abbess Marina Celsi.
The church of Saints Cosmas and Damian appears for the first time in the map by Benedetto Bordone in 1528.
Over time the interior was gradually decorated with altars and increasingly embellished by the most celebrated painters working in Venice. In the 18th century on the walls you could admire paintings by Palma il Giovane, Tintoretto, Tiepolo, Padovanino, Ricci and others.
With the fall of the Serenissima republic in 1797, religious communities throughout Venice were forcibly closed or experienced hardships. The convent was disbanded in 1806. The paintings were dispersed to other convents and churches and eventually most of them ended up in the Gallerie dell'Accademia where they still are today.
All the tombstones on the floor were also stored in a safe place for over 100 years and were only recently returned to their original location.