Every day since 1869, except for Sundays (that’s when everyone sleeps in), Campo dè Fiori hosts Rome’s most colorful and assorted market; bargaining here is a must and begins early! Wandering tourists will find flowers, fresh fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, spices and so much more.
In Ancient Rome, as uncovered evidence later revealed, the area was used as a storage by horsemen that participated in the games held at Circus Maximus. During the Middle Ages, the area was abandoned and, in its place, a field of wild flowers bloomed from which the square inherits its current name: Campo de’ Fiori (literally translating into “field of flowers”).
However, the plaza’s fame is strongly linked to its darkest chapters; Rome’s Campo de’ Fiori, in fact, was used as a site for public capital executions and punishments. Among those perpetrated, the execution for heresy of Philosopher Giordano Bruno on February 17th 1600 remains the most illustrious. In the exact place of his death a bronze statue of the Philosopher – tactically facing the Vatican - dauntingly now stands. Sculpted by Ettore Ferrari, the controversial memorial (clearly visible on our live webcam) was unveiled in 1889 powerfully symbolizing freedom of thought. On the base of the statue the following inscription reads: 'To Bruno - the century predicted by him - here where the fire burned'.
When Rome’s favorite market is over, the stands are cleared and Campo de’ Fiori turns into a lively meeting spot for students, locals and tourists!
Get a feel of this quintessential Roman square with our webcam broadcasting live from Campo de’ Fiori!
The marketplace also featured the so-called Terrina (bowl) fountain, designed in 1590 by Giacomo della Porta. An inscription reading “Do good and let them talk” appeared on its surface announcing the apparent gossipy, chit-chatty nature of the piazza. The construction was taken down in 1889, only to be replaced with a copy nine years later (the original now stands in front of the so-called Chiesa Nuova). Curious eyes will also notice that Campo de’ Fiori is the only square in Rome without a church!