The Spanish Steps look particularly beautiful in the Spring when for a few short weeks they are adorned with dozens of terracotta pots full of azaleas.
The Scalinata della Trinità dei Monti, to give the Spanish Steps its proper name, was designed by a little-known architect, Francesco de Sanctis (1679-1731), and built between 1723 and 1726. The steps were financed by a French diplomat, Étienne Gueffier.
The 136 steps, which link the Piazza di Spagna with the French church of Santissima Trinità dei Monti, rise in three distinct flights, a clear reference to the Holy Trinity to which the church is dedicated.
The stone balls, at the base of the steps, are alternately decorated with the fleur-de-lys of the French monarchy and the eagle of the coat of arms of Pope Innocent XIII (r. 1721-24).
My name is David Lown and I am an art historian from Cambridge, England. Since 2001 I have lived in Italy, where I run private and
small-group walking tours
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