What Is Special About The Trevi Fountain

Trevi Fountain Overview

The Trevi Fountain is an iconic landmark in Rome, Italy. It is one of the oldest and most renowned fountains in the world, and has earned its reputation for being a source of beauty and grandeur. Dating back to the 1700s, the fountain is located in the Piazza di Trevi and stands 25 meters tall and more than 50 meters wide- making it one of the largest fountains in the world. The Trevi Fountain is arguably one of the most Instagrammed landmarks in Rome and has been the setting of many iconic scenes in film.

Architectural Aspects

The fountain was built by the architect Nicola Salvi, who was commissioned by Pope Clement XII in 1730. Salvi was inspired by the fountain of Neptune in Bologna. The foundation of the fountain is made of travertine stone and is decorated with sculptures. The main figure at the centre of the basin is the god Oceanus, represented by a muscular male figure wearing a crown of seashells and reclined against a sea chariot being pulled by two seahorses. The figures on the chariot are accompanied by Tritons and Dolphins, along with the faces of sea gods and mermaids. It is held up by two large clusters of marble columns that were believed to have been originally designed for St. Peter’s Basilica. The Trevi Fountain was completed in 1762 and restored in the 20th century.

Historical Significance

The Trevi Fountain has an important history rooted in its symbolism. It has been dedicated to the god of the sea Poseidon, or Neptune as he was known in Latin. According to legend, when Neptune struck the ground with his trident, he produced a source of fresh water that later became the Trevi Fountain. The fountain was also said to have been the site of the legendary roman wedding of its namesake, Trivia, the daughter of a wealthy senator. Over the years, it has been seen as a symbol of the rebirth and prosperity of the city of Rome.

Pop Culture Relevance

The Trevi Fountain has been featured in some of the most iconic moments in film and has become a symbol of romance and beauty around the world. Federico Fellini’s ‘La Dolce Vita’ is probably one of the most famous scenes set there, but it has also had cameo roles in ‘Three Coins in The Fountain’, ‘Roman Holiday’, ‘The Lizzie McGuire Movie’ and many more. Alongside its cinematic fame, the fountain is also known for being a tourist attraction and a place of superstition and symbolism. It is a popular past-time for visitors to throw coins into the fountain, traditionally making a wish. This tradition has been said to have formed when it was believed that the fountain brings good luck and fortune.

Environmental Impact and Conservation

The presence of the fountain has caused environmental and cultural impact to the city of Rome, both positively and negatively. On the one hand, it is estimated that around 3000 coins are collected from the fountain each day and donated to a local charity. On the other hand, the fountain has been damaged due to crowds and the misuse of coins. In 2016, a project was initiated by the Italian government to safeguard the fountain from the ill effects of tourism, light pollution, and illegal vendors. This project includes the installation of a water filtration system and measures to prevent coin collecting and illegal activities in the area.

Safety at the Trevi Fountain

Rome is a popular tourist destination and, as such, the Trevi Fountain has become a focal point for disputes and unwanted attention. In 2019, the Italian government imposed a ban at the fountain banning activities such as handling coins, swimming and selling souvenirs. The measures have been put in place to ensure safety and keep the Trevi Fountain preserved for the generations to come.

Closing Thoughts

The Trevi Fountain has become a symbol of beauty and grandeur over the years. It has been the subject of movies, books, and legends and has become a popular tourist spot for people from all around the world. Despite the environmental and safety risks, the fountain remains one of the most iconic and beautiful landmarks in Rome.

Conservation Challenges

The Trevi Fountain is a delicate and beloved structure in the city of Rome, but the influx of tourism and illegal activities has caused the structure to be susceptible to damage. In an effort to prevent damage, the Italian government has put in place many projects and conservation measures. These efforts include installing water filtration systems, preventing coin collecting in the fountain and banning activities such as swimming and selling souvenirs.

Preservation Efforts

In order to protect its structure and longevity, extensive conservation efforts have been undertaken by the Italian government. These efforts have involved careful monitoring and restoration of the fountain, with a meticulous cleaning process to ensure that the travertine stone is well-preserved. In addition, experts have suggested that the installation of an anti-erosion system is necessary to ensure the longevity of the Trevi Fountain.

Economic Impact

The Trevi Fountain is not only a symbol of beauty but also a source of economic activity for Rome. Apart from the daily collection of coins for charity, the landmark also serves as an attraction for tourists. In addition, the surrounding restaurants, shops and businesses benefit from the fountain’s presence, with an estimated revenue of 18 million euros from tourism.


The Trevi Fountain is one of the most iconic and beloved landmarks in Rome, Italy. It has earned great renown due to its grandeur, beauty and fascinating legend. That being said, the fountain has also been subject to damage- both through natural erosion and due to human activities. Thus, conservation measures have been necessary to ensure that the landmark remains intact for future generations to enjoy. Despite the risks, the Trevi Fountain will remain an iconic and beloved symbol of Rome for years to come.

Herman Shaw is a passionate traveler and avid photographer who has seen many of the world's most awe-inspiring monuments. He has developed expertise in various aspects of world architecture and culture which he enjoys sharing with his readers. With deep historical knowledge and insight, Herman's writing brings life to these remarkable artifacts and highlights their importance in the grand scheme of human history.

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