toss the coin in the fountain… as the ancient romans did!

Nowdays the most famous fountain in the world is the Trevi Fountain, where the popular tradition requires the visitor who wishes to come back to throw a coin in the water basin.

Well even the ancient Romans had a founatin connected with a similar tradition: it was the spring of Anna Perenna. The legend tells that she was Dido’s unhappy sister, escaped from Carthage and welcomed by the hero Aeneas in Latium. Aeneas’ wife got jealous of Anna so she went away and was abducted by the river Numicius who fell in love with her turning the girl into a goddess.

The cult of Anna Perenna was connected to the renovation of the year and springtime, and during her day (March, 15th) people used to reach the natural spring consacrated to her, get drunk, dance and… you can imagine the rest! It was one of the happiest celebrations in Rome, but all year long people used to throw coins in the fountain to get some good luck. Anna’s cult was also connected with magic and people used to cast objects engraved with “defixiones” (curses) and some of them are really peculiar. Want to see it?

The archeological findings, coins and anathemas are exhibited at the National Museums of the Baths, while the archeological site needs a special reservation.


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