The Piazza Di Spagna - The Spanish Steps in Rome, Italy
If you have been following my blog posts then no doubt you heard me say before that Spanish language and culture can be found all around you.
You only have to look, and that is just what I have been doing this year.
Earlier this spring, my family and I took at trip abroad to visit the famous steps shown in this picture. Some of you may recognize them as The Spanish Steps set in , Italy. Climbing these steps which are situated between the Piazza di Spagna at their base and Piazza Trinità dei Monti at their top is a must do if you plan to visit Rome.
The Piazza di Spagna or Spanish Square is connected to the French church (Trinità dei Monti) via the long and beautiful staircase, known as the Scalinata della Trinità dei Monti or Spanish Steps. Being that I am an avid learner of history I am often intrigued with anything more than 100 years old. What better place to explore than Europe? There is so much history that remains for us all to study and learn from.
There was a design competition held in 1717 that was won by Francesco de Sanctis. This lead to the home of 138 steps the Spanish Steps we see today. They were designed and built between 1723 and 1725.
The idea of connecting the church (right) with the popular square below originated in the seventeenth century, when the French ordered an elegant staircase be created with a statue of King Louis XIV of France at the top of the staircase.
Nonetheless, during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries Spain was on the verge of becoming the world’s most powerful and first global empire. In Rome, the Spanish had influence on politics, economics, culture and society, as well as religion. Due to issues with the papal, the statue was never erected.
It was very interesting to learn that the name was originally named Trinita dei Monti, which was in honor of the Church; however, was later changed to Piazza di Spagna because of the close proximity of the Spanish Embassy and the Holy See.
At the bottom of the steps you will find a boat. Wondering about the significance of the fountain, I was able to find out from a local tour guide that legend has it that on this very spot landed a small fishing boat after a great flood in 1500s.
Given the history, cultural richness and the fact that there is so much Spanish around you, don’t you feel compelled to learn? Learning another language can open up a world of opportunities. All you have to do is participate. Today, the Spanish Steps remain one of the many popular sites for tourists and locals in Rome due to its fantastic location in the artistic region, its history and of course, it’s shopping.
So, the next time you are out and about in the world, pay attention and you are bound to learn some Spanish.
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