|Fontana del Moro|
|a sea nymph in the Fountain of Neptune|
On the northern end of the Piazza is the Fountain of Neptune. The basin of the fountain was designed in 1574 by the same artist who designed the Moor fountain on the other side of the plaza. It was finished out in 1878 by Antonio della Britta, with Neptune fighting an octopus in the center, and by Gregoria Zappala, who created the other sculptures on the fountain, including nereids (sea nymphs) and walruses.
|photo by **Mary**, taken in 2006. See more of her photographs here|
The Piazza Navona used to be a racetrack built by the emperor Domitian around A.D. 80. Rick Steves remarks, "Since ancient times, the square has been a center of Roman life. In the 1800s, the city would flood the square to cool off the neighborhood." It is now a city square that holds many festivals and theater events, and is considered a family spot. When we were there, street vendors with artwork were throughout the middle of the plaza and there were lots of people walking around the fountains.