Temple of Vesta (1890).

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True minor monuments of ancient Rome, the "drinking-trough", large tanks needed to quench the horses and herds of cattle as they enter the city, were marked even on the soles of Rome. There is not that one, that the Bocca della Verità, surrounded by columns kerbstone pianted in the pavement. The other, which was once located at the edge of San Peter's square, has been moved behind the great michelangelesque apse of the basilica. The circular temple of Vesta retains the old name, although the latest archaeological studies prefer to give the structure a dedication to "Ercole Vincitore", who had driven the giant Caco from a cave of the Aventino. Near the temple is marked by a grassy embankment sees the balustrade, which will then be replaced by walls and Tiber.


Demolition that will follow a new path planning strategy, which will give a very different approach to the traditional arena of the Bocca della Verità. The rehabilitation of the area, the same fountain will eventually be dismantled and rebuilt a few hundred meters, the Tiber Aventino. Around these large pools-fountains, wrote a chronicler of the time, exchanged news, intertwined rustic idylls and threw well "the basics of agricultural business, the expertise and sales, exchanges, rents of pastures, the cut meadows and woods". The fountain or stream would meet twice a day, "the ploughman for the watering of cattle, and horsemen and cow-boys that sweep with the sting of grugnale herds of horses".


The views of Piazza Bocca della Verità, with the so-called temple of Vesta in the background and the fountain in the foreground, are among the first images portrayed in calotype by adherents of the "Roman School": the first photograph of the square, signed and dated to 1847 by Giacomo Caneva as if it were a painting, kept in Rome in the collection Cianfarani, is the oldest known recovery of a Roman subject. The square is named after the famous “Bocca della Verità”, the famous “mascherone” placed in the portico of the church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin. According to a well-known Roman legend mouth threatening to eat the hand of anyone putting his hand inside it lied. The square is at the heart of ancient Rome's commercial district between the river port, near the Tiber island, and the general store.


Here lies Forum Olitorio (or vegetables) and the Forum Boario; bankers and moneychangers carried out their activities in Velabro. Fallen Empire, under Byzantine influence, was the center of the Greek colony. In this area were made until 1868 executions with the guillotine. Here operated the renowned Mastro Titta, who from 1796 to 1864 became infamous for having cut 516 heads! Today the square has a unique complex of monuments in the world: two ancient temples still preserved, a fountain of '700, a medieval church with a majestic bell tower. The so-called temple of Vesta is the oldest Roman circular marble temple, dating from the second century BC. Erroneously attributed to Vesta for the plant like the eponymous temple of the Forum Romano was really dedicated to Hercules.


Was used as a church and the interior walls are frescoed with paintings of the '400. Beside it stands the temple of Portunus, god of the river port, an example of Greek and Roman architecture dates from the second century BC. Head of the church until the nineteenth century of Santa Maria Egiziaca, former-obsequious and this protector of women of bad reputation. To decorate the square in 1715 Pope Clemente XI did you place a late fountain-baroque by Carlo Bizzaccheri, two tritons with their tails intertwined raise two shells at the center of the mountains, a symbol of the Albani family, launched a jet into the air.

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