Trevi Fountain Rome

trvfntnThe history of the city of Rome spans many millennia, and for several hundred years it was the centre of one of history’s largest and most successful civilisations when, during that time, Rome was the most important city in the world.

Rome is a city of unparalleled beauty, it is a place in which many architects, builders and artisans have left their mark. One of the most inspiring pieces of public architecture in Rome is the Trevi Fountain which, due in part to its great beauty and also of the legends which surround it, is also one of the world’s best known and loved fountains.

There has been a fountain in the same spot since 19BC. as that was where one of Rome’s main aqueducts, the Virgo, terminated. Although, the original fountain wasn’t as large or as ornate as the one we see today.

Work began on the fountain we know today in 1732 with Pope Clement X11 as its patron. Money to pay for the construction was not a problem as it was funded by a public lottery. The Pope died long before the work was finished, so subsequent popes changed the design to suit their own whims, and the fountain which we recognise today was finally completed in 1762.

The fountain is quite massive, having a height of 26.3 metres (85 feet) and a length of 49.15 metres (160 feet). Its water consumption is huge as every day it spills 80,000 cubic metres of water (2,824,800 cubic feet). It sits at the junction of three roads, and underwent a major renovation in 1998.

Many people believe that the statue at the centre of the fountain is the Roman god Neptune, but it is fact Oceanus, the god of ponds, rivers and streams. The fountain is made from travertine marble which was quarried near the town of Tivoli, which is about 20kms from Rome.

Most people would have heard of the tradition of throwing coins in the fountain, and the customs harks back to ancient Rome when people would throw some coins in the previous fountains as they passed by, in order to appease the gods. The modern tradition is the belief that those who throw coins in the fountain will return to Rome one day.

It is a tradition which city authorities encourage as about 3,000 euros worth of coins are tossed into the fountain each day, with the proceeds going towards funding charitable organisations.

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