Fontana dell’Acqua Paola: Roman Icon

May 25, 2020 207

The Fontana dell’Acqua Paola (Acqua Paola Fountain) is one of Rome’s most famous sites and has appeared in movies and songs. Also known as Fontanone del Gianicolo (“the big fountain on the Janiculum”), it rises at the top of that hill. It was commissioned by Pope Paul V, born Camillo Borghese, to celebrate the redevelopment of the Aqua Traiana aqueduct, which received water from Lake Bracciano and supplied water to the districts on the right bank of the Tiber.

The project’s goal was to serve Trastevere, Borgo and most importantly the Vatican and its wonderful gardens. Work began in 1608, but the fountain – built by Giovanni Fontana and Flaminio Ponzio – was not completed until 1614.

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