Video tour of Campo de’ Fiori Market With More Facts & History
In this video, Dennis Callan shares tips plus he shows how the market is set up and how it changes throughout the day. Additional facts and history are provided.
If you have jet lag and are up early, the market is one of the few places open early. He suggests that you watch the set up.
Campode’ Fiori is not just about flowers
Campo de’ Fiori translates as field of flowers in English and though the flowers are beautiful and plentiful it is really the fruits and vegetable that are fun to see and sample.
The colors and smells make this one the many sites in Rome that will put all of your senses on high alert. The market is surrounded by cheese stores, wine stores and deli’s selling salami and prosciutto. It is the perfect place to pick up everything you need for a picnic. If a picnic is not in your plans then choose from one of the many trattorias and bars in the area.
History & Facts
As safe and beautiful as this market is today, it wasn’t always so. In medieval times and during the Renaissance this was one of the liveliest and roughest areas of Rome. Wealthy Roman nobles and Cardinals from the Vatican mingled with fishmongers and farmers at Campo de’ Fiori.
It was in this piazza that Caravaggio killed his opponent after losing a tennis match on the square. Nearby Cellini, a goldsmith killed a business rival.
In Renaissance times the piazza was surrounded by inns many of which were owned by the mistress of Pope Alexander I, a 15th century courtesan named Vannozza Catanei.
During the Inquisition the piazza was the site of executions – not the sort of thing we like to think about when we are looking at food. The hooded statue in the center of the square is the philosopher Giordano Bruno. Bruno was burned at the stake for heresy on this spot in 1600 for suggesting the earth moved around the sun. The sign on his pedestal reads “And the flames rose up”
When the statue of Giordano Bruno was erected in 1889 locals rioted in support of the statue and against the Vatican who condemned the statue as honoring a heretic. The history of demonstrations in Rome is a long one indeed.
Behind the statue, you can see apartments built into the ancient outer wall of Rome’s Theater of Pompey. This entertainment complex from ancient Rome is where Julius Caesar was assassinated.
Where to Find Campo de’ Fiori
Campo de’ Fiori is located about 200 yards off Corso Vittorio Emanuele (turn right on Via dei Baullari), near the Piazza Cancellena. It is within walking distance of the Piazza Navona. The market at Campo de’ Fiori is held every morning except Sunday.
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