Fontana dell’Acqua Paola
The fountain “Fontana dell’Acqua Paola”, also known as “Il Fontanone” (Great Fountain) was built under Pope Paul V, of the Borghese family, in 1611. For this purpose, he had the Aqua Traiana, dating back to 109, which brings water from the Lago di Bracciano to the city, repaired. This restored the water supply to Trastevere and the Vatican.
The “Fontana del Mosè”, built in 1587 under Pope Sixtus V, served as a model.
It is a fountain house in the form of a triumphal arch with three large and two small gates. On the smaller arches one finds the heraldic animal of the Borghese, the eagle. In the upper part there is the dedicatory inscription that praises Pope Paul V. The building materials used were marble from the Roman Forum and the Minerva Temple and granite, including the four columns, from the old St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican.
From the inscription it is clear that it was believed that they had repaired the “Aqua Alsietina”, built by Emperor Augustus in 2 BC. However, this aqueduct did not carry drinking water. This water was mainly used for the irrigation of gardens and for the creation of naumachia (naval battles).
In 1690 Carlo Fontana added the large basin.