Point of interest

Piazza di Spagna

Piazza di Spagna, Roma

Spanish Square, one of the most famous squares of Rome, owes its name to the Palace of Spain, the Spanish Embassy to the Holy See. It's characterizes by the monumental staircase of 12 ramps and 135 steps ordered by Pope Benedict XIII on the occasion of the Jubilee of 1725 to connect the embassy to the Church of Trinità dei Monti, which stood on a steep slope of the Pincio. The project, made by Alessandro and Francesco De Sanctis, proposes the urbanization of the area through a grand staircase decorated with garden terraces and decked out, in the spring and summer, from floral arrangements, according to a growing scenic perspective in line with the dictates of Baroque architecture. On either side of the Staircase overlook important buildings and house-museums, including the home of the English poet John Keats, who died in Rome in 1821, and the famous tea room "Babington's", founded in 1893. From the side of Via Frattina there is the Propaganda Fide Palace, owned by the Holy See, whose front and side facades are respectively works of Bernini and Borromini; next, stands the Column of the Immaculate Conception, built for the proclamation of the dogma (1856). The Column, of Roman origin, was found in the excavations of Campo Marzio: rests on a marble plinth with statues of prophets and culminates with the bronze statue of the Immaculate by Giuseppe Obici that, every December 8th, is lauded by Brigade Fire with a garland of flowers. At the foot of the Staircase, there is one of the most famous Roman fountains, the "Barcaccia Fauntain", designed by Pietro and Gian Lorenzo Bernini in 1627 and commissioned by Pope Urban VIII. It owes its name to the characteristic shape that, according to the tradition, reproduces a boat ran aground at that point during the overflowing of the Tevere in 1598. The Square, cited in the famous poem by Cesare Pavese, "I will pass from Spain Square" has inspired many artists, film and television series ("The Girls of the Spanish Square", a film by Luciano Emmer, 1952) and has always been the center of cultural and social events, including the annual event tied to the "Week Fashion in Rome".

(Photo: https://www.flickr.com/photos/silipo/; Wikipedia)

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