Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Trevi Fountain, Rome

Some of the decorative elements of the Trevi fountain in Rome have fallen off, which would seem to indicate that some major restoration is required. I sincerely hope that any necessary work is carried out soon and appropriately. The Trevi fountain is not only iconic, but a wonderful sight that dominates the small piazza in which it sits.

An extract from City Chronicles: A Little Bit of Italy about the Trevi Fountain.



We entered the piazza via one of the three narrow lanes that converge upon the square and which give it is name – tre vie. The square is not huge and is entirely dominated by the fountain, which meant a considerable press of people around the edge, all vying for a for a good camera angle. I was more than a little concerned about the presence of pickpockets; it would present a very good opportunity; the sight of police officers standing nonchalantly in the shaded areas of the square enforced my feeling. I zipped up pockets and we inveigled our way to sit by the water to study the sculptures that covered the fountain. The present fountain replaced an earlier version that had been fed by the Aqua Vegine aqueduct and been erected in honour of Pope Nicholas V. This version had been completed for Pope Clement XII in 1762. Neptune dominates the marine and seasonal statuary. He is flanked by tritons on horse-back who represent both stormy seas and the sea in repose. In the niches behind Neptune are statues representing Health and Abundance, whilst the pediments are decorated with the four seasons and their gifts. The statues nestle in amongst the boulders from which the water cascades into the pool below. All of this sits against a wall of the Palazzo Poli. The sculptures are not the best in Rome; it was the sheer size of the fountain in the small square that created the drama that left me inspired by the place. We were only missing Anita Ekberg trailing through the waters to complete the scene. The police were most likely on hand to prevent any re-enactments as much as to warn off pickpockets.

The sound of coins sploshing into the pool’s waters mingled with the cascading water and hum of conversation. Throwing one coin into the fountain is meant to grant you a wish, throwing a second is to ensure a return to Rome. My mood may have mellowed but I was not sure that my most fervent wish at that time ought to be granted and I needed to see more of Rome before I decided whether I wished to return. 

Rome certainly did grow on me, and although I did not throw a coin into the fountain I know I will return there.



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