Symbol of Renaissance papal patronage
It was Pope Sixtus V who ordered the construction of the square for games, fairs and shows at the end of the 16th century. Until then it was only a peripheral space surrounded by barns and barns. The pope, who has always been keen on obelisks, commissioned Domenico Fontana to erect the obelisk in Piazza del Popolo in a maximum time of 12 hours, in case he had not succeeded in the enterprise, the pope would have resorted to the death penalty.
Thus Fontana built the Flaminio obelisk, the oldest in Rome, 24 meters high. In 1811 Napoleon commissioned Valadier to give a neoclassical touch to the square, making it a true open-air theater. Valadier delimited it with two lateral hemicycles and built marvelous staircases and terraces decorated with statues on the slopes of the Pincio. Subsequently on the right side was placed the Fountain of the Goddess Rome and on the left side the Fountain of Neptune works designed by the same Valadier.
In 1823 the obelisk was enriched with the four marble basins and lions at the behest of Pope Leo XII. A few years later, here, several opponents of the papacy were beheaded.
The famous shopping streets "Il Babuino", via Ripetta and via del Corso meet right in this famous square forming a triangle called the Tridente and the two twin churches Santa Maria di Montesanto and Santa Maria dei Miracoli help to make this place truly magical . A third church, Santa Maria del Popolo was built on the burial place of Emperor Nero. The internal façade of Porta del Popolo was built by Bernini, while the external one was commissioned by Michelangelo but made by Nanni di Baccio Bigio.
People square since ancient times has been frequented by famous people such as Trilussa, Guttuso, Pasolini... today the square is identified as an emblem of Italian culture. If you are in Rome stop for a few minutes to admire this square and find your peace and inner harmony between the chaos of the city.
Not to be missed:
- FLAMINIO OBELISK
- PINCIO STEPS
- TWINS CHURCHES