Trevi Fountain in Rome

Trevi Fountain (Italian: Fontana di Trevi) is a fountain within the Trevi district in Rome, Italy, designed by Nicola Salvi and completed by Pietro Bracci. Standing twenty six metres (86 ft) high and forty nine. metres (161.3 ft) wide, it’s the biggest Baroque fountain within the town and one among the foremost noted fountains within the world.

Trevi fountain at night

Trevi fountain in Rome: a close up

The name of Trevi is supposed by some writers to be derived from these three streams of water three ways, Tre-vii; but there is more reason to believe that the fountain took its name from the mediaeval name of that quarter of the city Regione Trevi, from trevium, because of three roads which converge near the present Piazza of Trevi. Sixtus IV had constructed near the fountain a large public washing-trough, and the whole composition was extremely simple and practical.

The Rome of Sixtus V and Paul V became too sumptuous for the old fountain, and as early as 1626 plans were made for its reconstruction. The Barberini Pope, Urban VIII, had his own ideas of magnificence, he proposed to change the fountain from its old site to its present position against the southern facade of the great Poli palace and Bernini made for him some beautiful sketches for the new masterpiece.

Urban VIII stripped the portico of the Pantheon of its bronze and also carried off a part of the base of the tomb of Cecilia Metella, proposing to construct his fountain out of these materials. The Roman people, whose love for their own antiquities was constantly growing, showed such indignation when the Pope’s project became known that Urban was actually obliged to abandon his scheme, and it was not until eleven pontificates after his time that the work on the new fountain was really begun.

Trevi fountain in Rome: the masterpiece came to life

Then it was entrusted to the architect Niccolo Salvi by Clement XII (Corsinii, 1730-1740), and after the death of this pontiff and his successor, Benedict XIV, and eleven years after the death of Salvi himself, the fountain was at last finished.

Trevi fountain in Rome: Coin throwing

If you look carefully into the placid water of the pool, you will discern at the bottom various small coins. These have been thrown into it in accordance with the legend which says that the sacrifice of a coin to the waters of Trevi ensures your return to the Eternal City.

Coins are supposedly meant to be thrown using the right hand over the left shoulder. This was the theme of 1954’s 3 Coins within the Fountain and also the Academy victory song by that name that introduced the image. A calculable 3,000 Euros are thrown into the fountain on a daily basis. The money has been accustomed to subsidize a grocery for Rome’s needy but there are regular tries to steal coins from the fountain.

Trevi fountain: walking tour

Check the following walking tours in Rome:

Trevi fountain – 1 day walking tour