One of the two 19th century obelisks in Villa Torlonia
The two granite obelisks which stand in Villa Torlonia were commissioned by Prince Alessandro Torlonia (1800-80), in memory of his parents. The two obelisks, which are both 10.2 metres (33 feet) tall, were erected in 1842, on June 4th and July 26th, respectively. Each obelisk bears a dedication in Egyptian hieroglyphs. Latin translations are supplied on the pedestals.
The erection of the first obelisk, which was dedicated to his father Prince Giovanni Torlonia, took place in front of a huge crowd of onlookers, which included such dignitaries as Pope Gregory XVI (r. 1833-46) and King Ludwig I of Bavaria.