Campo de' Fiori
From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
Campo dei Fiori is a rectangular piazza near Piazza Navona in Rome, Italy, on the border of rione Parione and rione Regola. Campo dei Fiori, translated literally from Italian, means "field of flowers." The name was first given during the Middle Ages when the area was actually a meadow.
In Ancient Rome the area was unused space between Pompey's Theatre and the flood-prone Tiber. Though the Orsini established themselves on the south flank of the space in the 13th century, until the 15th century the square remained undeveloped. The first church in the immediate vicinity was built during the pontificate of Boniface IX (1389-1404), Santa Brigida a Campo dei Fiori; with the building-up of the rione, the church has now come to face that part of the former Campo that is now Piazza Farnese. In 1456 under Pope Callixtus III, Ludovico Cardinal Trevisani paved the area: this was part of a greater project of improvement of the rione Parione. This renewal was both the result and cause of several important buildings being built in the surroundings; in particular, the Orsini palace on Campo dei Fiori was rebuilt. The Renaissance Palazzo della Cancelleria can be seen in Vasi's etching, rising majestically beyond the far right corner of the Campo.