The Egyptian lions of the Cordonata

You are along the route: THE ZOO OF WONDERS. STONE ANIMALS

Cordonata di accesso al Campidoglio
Always visible.

The long stairway which leads from piazza dell’Aracoeli to piazza del Campidoglio, known as the Cordonata, is by Michelangelo. At its foot are two Egyptian lions, originating from the ancient sanctuary to the Egyptian goddess Isis in Campo Marzio. In 1562, Pope Pius IV Medici placed them to decorate the stairway. When the new Felice aqueduct was extended to the Campidoglio, the lions were adapted to fountains. In Christian tradition, the lion is a symbol of strength, courage and wisdom. It is said that during certain ceremonies, wine (“white from one” and “red from the other”) gushes from the lions’ mouths rather than water, to the delight of the people.

How to get the step: The Egyptian lions of the Cordonata

Campidoglio, Piazza del Campidoglio, 00186 Roma, Italy


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