The Trevi Fountain
The Fontana di Trevi (Trevi Fountain) is the most monumental fountain in Rome and one of the most beautiful in the world. The backdrop of the fountain is the Poli palace, which gives a new facade with a giant order of Corinthian pilasters that connect the two floors.
The fountain is located at the junction of three streets (tre vie), marking the point of the Aqua Virgo (in Italian, Acqua Vergine), one of the ancient aqueducts that supplied water to Rome. With the supposed help of the Virgin, the Roman technicians located a source of pure water only 22 km from the city (scene represented in the current façade of the fountain). This Aqua Virgo ran by the shortest aqueduct in Rome directly to the Baths of Agrippa and was used for more than four hundred years. The coup de grace to the urban life of late classical Rome was the rupture of the aqueducts by the besieging Goths in 537. The medieval Romans were reduced to draw water from contaminated wells and the Tiber River, which was also used as a sewer.
The Roman custom of building a lovely and beautiful fountain at the end of the aqueducts that brought water to the city was resurrected in the fifteenth century, with the Renaissance. In 1453, Pope Nicholas V finished repairing the Aqua Virgo aqueduct and the fountain he built at the end was a simple pile, designed by the humanist architect Leon Battista Alberti, to announce the arrival of water.
In 1867 during the visit of Carlota of Mexico when she went to meet Pope Pius IX, she began to manifest symptoms of madness and to say that they wanted to poison her and used the Trevi fountain to drink water since it was the only water she thought was not poisoned .
The monumental fountain that we admire today was built in the 18th century by an almost unknown man, named Nicola Salvi, who surprised everyone with this amazing design. The works for its construction lasted for 30 years and ended up coming to the health of Salvi, who died without being able to undertake other projects and without a finished his beautiful fountain.
It is incredible the capacity of astonishment that this fountain can generate. After going around and going through different alleys, you get to this hidden work of art, but it is completely worth it, to find it after a long walk.
Today, it is still a tradition to throw coins into the fountain. It is estimated that around 3,000 euros, are released daily. At night, all the coins are put together and used for acts of charity. The myth of throwing the coins to the source, was born with the film "Three coins in the fountain" in 1954. In the section of curiosities we detail its meaning.
Since we are in the Trevi fountain, the best thing is to visit the restaurants that are located around the fountain, where you can eat a "Pizza al Taglio" (pizza by the slice) or let yourself be carried away by the incredible flavors of a typical "gelato" "(ice cream) artisan.
When you are here, you will notice the large number of people who gather in this small square. The most advisable thing is to go several times in a day. However, it is almost mandatory, that you have two essential visits. One, during the day, lit by the sun's rays; and another at night, when the fountain is illuminated, tourists no longer fill the square, and one can appreciate such majesty. Some consider it's the most beautiful source in the world.
Near the Trevi Fountain you can visit other sites of interest such as: The Vicus Caprarius: The City of Water, the Quirinal Palace and two small churches called Sant'Andrea al Quirinale and San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane.
+ One of the outstanding characteristics of the Fontana di Trevi is the contrast between the monumentality of the fountain and the narrowness of the square in which it is located: so hidden among narrow streets that it is hard to find it.
+ Throw a coin to the source, ensures the return to the "Eternal City" (Rome). Those who are reluctant to do this custom are very funny.
+ A current interpretation is that, in addition, two coins lead to a new romance and three ensure a marriage.
+ Another version of this legend is that it brings luck to throw three coins with the right hand over the left shoulder to the source.
+ With 20 meters wide and 26 meters high, it becomes the largest fountain in Rome.
*Location: In Rome.
*Schedule: Open everyday.
*Rates: Visit the Trevi Fountain...free.
*Warning: Everyone remembers the famous scene of "La Dolce Vita" in which Anita Ekberg gets into the fountain and invites Marcello Mastroianni to bathe with her? Well, there are a few who have tried to imitate them, taking a dip in the fountain, either naked or dressed. Do not even think about doing it! Bathing in the Trevi fountain is prohibited, and they say that the fine amounts to $500 Euros. So, just in case, better cool down with a good ice cream!
*Best time: At night.