Piazza di Spagna
3 images 2 contributors
About this spot
This is one of the most famous landmarks of the Eternal City. At the center of the square is the Barcaccia fountain, dated 1629, by Pietro Bernini (father of the celebrated Gian Lorenzo, who finished its construction). It was built to commemorate the Tiber flood of 1598 and its semi-submerged boat shape was a device to conceal the technical problem of poor water pressure. At the center of the south-east triangle of the square rises the column of the Immaculate Conception, on top of which is placed the bronze statue of the Virgin Mary; but it is the central staircase that makes the square one of the most spectacular scenes in the city. It was built by Francesco De Sanctis, in 1723-26, at the behest of Innocent XIII, and gave a definitive arrangement to the considerable difference in level between the square and the Trinità dei Monti church.
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