After the creation of the Archimedes Square in 1878, the Municipality of Syracuse commissioned the sculptor Giulio Moschetti to build a fountain. The sculptor was choosen after his creation in Catania, the beautiful Fountain of Prosepina, received many praise.
After the presentation of the preparatory sketch of the fountain, the City Council commissioned the work through a resolution dated February 1, 1906. Giulio Moschetti built the fountain in about ten months, between 1906 and 1907, with the help of his son, the sculptor Mario Moschetti.
The fountain faces south and highlights the figure of Diana, the Roman goddess of the hunt, protector of Ortygia in ancient times. The sculpture of Diana holds a bow and is accompanied by a dog, the attributes of the goddess of hunting.
At her feet, there is Arethusa, the Nereid who fled from her home in Arcadia, beneath the sea, and according to legend was transformed into a fresh water fountain on the island of Ortygia. Near Arethusa, her lover, Alpheus, is amazed by what is happening to her.
Inside the tank of the fountain, we can find four Tritons on two sea horses and two pistrices (sea monsters). On the edge of the basin, there are some masks and coats of arms.
The fountain was built in reinforced concrete, because of a lower construction cost and also because of the wide versatility that this technique is allowing.
Fontana di Diana was restored in 1996 by the former Syracuse water management company, SOGEAS.
HOW TO GET THERE
The Fountain of Diana is located 250 meters from the Cathedral of Syracuse and about 1.6 kilometers from the Syracusa railway station. To easily find the fountain on foot, use the map below.
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