Fontana del Moro

Typology: Fountains


Address: Piazza Navona
Zone: Rione Parione (Navona-Campo de' Fiori) (Roma centro)


The fountain of the Moro (Moor) is fed by the Acqua Vergine and situated on the Southern side of Piazza Navona in front of  Palazzo Pamphilj. The portasanta marble basin built by Giacomo della Porta in 1575 under Gregory the Thirteenth Boncompagni (1572-1585) was decorated with groups of tritons, dragons and masks built by sixteenth century artists (Egidio della Riviera, Taddeo Landini, Simone Moschini, and Giacobbe Silla Longhi) and designed by Giacomo della Porta, replaced in 1874 with copies by Luigi Amici. Innocent the Tenth Pamphilj (1644-1655) commissioned the renovation of the sixteenth century fountain to Gian Lorenzo Bernini,  who built a pool that followed the design of the previous pond. A statue sculpted by Giannantonio Mari and designed by Bernini was placed at the centre of the pond in 1655. It represents a moor holding a dauphin’s tail in his hands and with the dauphin’s head coming out from between the leg’s of the statue and pouring water. The Moro was preferred to a group called “della lumaca” (of the snail), consisting of two dauphins that supported a sea-shell. The latter design did not meet the approval of Olimpia Maidalchini, Innocent the Tenth’s sister in law, and was placed in Villa Pamphilj, where it still is today. Giuseppe Gioacchino Belli dedicated one of his first sonnets Er Moro de Piazza Navona to this fountain.

See also

Culture and leisure › Cultural heritage › Architectural and historical heritage
Last checked: 2023-08-02 11:49
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