Fountains of Rome
Our fountains of Rome tour focuses on some of the more famous and unique
fountains of Rome. Undoubtedly there is no city in the world that has
more waters and fountains than Rome. It has been this way since the
Roman times when 11 aqueducts supplied thousands and thousands of liters
of water to the city each day.
In the Renaissance the popes decided to renew and beautify the city
that had been abandoned for a long time by promoting splendid works
such as the building of new bridges, the restoration of the ancient
aqueducts and above all the creation of public fountains which, in
addition to providing a useful service to the population were extremely
Monumental fountains also began to decorate the gardens and courtyards
of the noble palaces, opening the way to the grandiose decorations of
the Baroque period. These ornamental structures when simulating natural
settings such as grottoes or waterfalls were named "Nymphaeum"
to recall the similar architectural creations which the Greeks and the
Romans had dedicated to the cult of the Nymphs. The Villa Guilia possesses
a delightful Nymphaeum that greatly influenced Palladio when he designed
his own Nymphaeum at the Villa Barbaro, at Maser.
In Baroque Rome, full of surprisingly scenographical buildings, many
more fountains assuming original forms and spectacular dimensions were
built, such as the Fountain of the Rivers in Piazza Navona, and the
celebrated Fountain of Trevi which are featured our Original
Rome Walking Tour.
The Fountain of Triton - A Baroque fountain executed in Travertine
by Gian Lorenzo Bernini around 1642., the fountain is without doubt
one of the most beautiful in the city, especially for the naturalism
with which the artist represented the sea monster, half man and half
fish, seated on the valves of an open shell. The Triton has a powerful
physical build and is shown blowing through a conch.
A tour of Rome would be incomplete without a visit to the Trevi Fountain.
The Trevi Fountain is featured on our Original
Rome Walking Tour where you'll learn the history behind this important
monument, and significance of the decorative decorations, as well as
hearing how a local barber influenced the final design of the fountain.
The Trevi Fountain was built between 1732 and 1762, according to a project
by Nicola Salvi. The Trevi Fountain is one of Rome's most famous landmarks
and typifies the role of fountains in Rome's urban landscape. It's movement
which is already audible in the nearby streets as you approach the Piazza,
exalts Nature's constant flow in an incessant play of dynamic effects.
The Trevi Fountain was conceived as a large monument set against a
pre-existing building and consisting of a rich and animated decoration
in addition to the basin. The architectural and decorative elements
scenically frame the water that gushes down and collects in the large
basin representing the sea.
The Fountain of Books, was built close to the nearby complex of Sant'Ivo
alla Sapienza, at one time the seat of the University of Rome, and is
decorated by three volumes and a deer's head.
Piazza Navona is home to several beautiful fountains including the
The Fountain of Neptune, was originally called the Calderai, because
of its close proximity to the workshops of the artisans who worked with
copper. It remained bare until the 19th Century when it was decorated
with the statue of Neptune struggling with an octopus. This fountain
is featured on our Original Rome Walk.
The most famous fountain of Piazza Navona is the Four Rivers fountain
which is featured on our Original Rome Walking
Tour. It was designed by Bernini for Pope Innocent X Pamphilj, who
owned a palace on Piazza Navona.
Inaugurated in 1651, the fountain represents the four rivers that stand
for the four continents known at that time. According to tradition Bernini
carved the arm of the statue lifted up to protect itself from the imminent
collapse of the church that had been enlarged and reconstructed by his
great rival Borromini.
The fountains of Piazza Venezia are featured on our Original Rome Walking
Tour, part of the colossal structure, the two ornamental fountains Fountain
of the Adriatic and Fountain of the Tyrrhenian sea refer to the new
Italy, united and free.
The Fountain of the Porter is an example of one of Rome's talking fountains.
For centuries political satires, known as Pasquinades, written by the
Romans to ridicule the authorities were attached to these fountains.