Obelisco Agonale
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Neighborhood: Parione
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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4.0
106 reviews
Excellent
23
Very good
67
Average
16
Poor
0
Terrible
0

Mairwen1
United Kingdom7,416 contributions
Jun 2022
It’s strange thing but there are more Egyptian obelisks in Rome than in Egypt. Most were plundered from ancient Egypt. Despite the enormous logistical difficulties involved with transporting these giant granite stones, the Roman emperors shipped around 50 of the things off to Rome anyway. Thirteen still exist today.
They were used to decorate stadiums and mausoleums and later, popes re-purposed them to decorate piazzas, palaces and even the Vatican.
This obelisk stands on top of the Four Rivers Fountain in the centre of Piazza Navona. Pope Innocent X installed the obelisk here in 1649 in front of the family palazzo and the famous sculptor, Bernini incorporated it into the fountain design. It’s a stunning composite monument.
As obelisks go, it’s pretty short. On its own, it’s just 16m tall but if you add in the height of the fountain, it reaches 30m.
With four tapered sides and made from a giant single piece of granite, it looks like a traditional Egyptian obelisk. However there are some distinctly non-Egyptian, Christian things about it. The most obvious one is the dove at the top, Pope Innocent X’s family symbol and a Christian symbol of peace.
The hieroglyphics look authentic but were actually added by the emperor Domitian. Instead of telling the story of an Egyptian pharaoh, they record Domitian’s crowning. He had a blank column cut from the Egyptian quarries and in a kind of cultural appropriation, had the hieroglyphs added.
Written June 30, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Seat3D - looking local.
Holland, PA50 contributions
Jun 2019 • Family
Ok there are a lot of squares and fountains in Europe but this one is truly special. It used to be a running track for races. As it evolved, no strict zoning rules at the time, it became an amazing space. Visit it often as it is different with the different times of the day. It really does feel like a neighborhood park. Read the story about the fountains you won’t be disappointed.
Written June 4, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

95nikop
Brisbane, Australia2,431 contributions
Dec 2016 • Family
It is the obelisk over the famous fountain in the middle of the Piazza Navona. It is nice to see as you will likely be visiting the Piazza anyway.
Written January 17, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

L3K
Guisborough, UK1,876 contributions
Jan 2020
Why the obelisk atop the fountain has a separate listing from the fountain baffles me. Surely it's all one sight? Anyway, the fountain is a work of art, the obelisk above it less so.
Written February 19, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

badmintontim
Hastings, UK4,535 contributions
Dec 2019 • Couples
This is the centrepiece of the Square that gives it a grandeur of its own with the fountains and sculptures around the area and we found it to be well worth a look.
Written December 22, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Mark42139
New York City, NY1,623 contributions
Jun 2019 • Family
This is a nice obelisk in the midst of Piazza Navona, a very famous square, and popular part of Rome.
Written July 4, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Don P
Dallas, TX14,494 contributions
Mar 2019 • Couples
Bernini used this Obelisk in the fountain to represent the Catholic Church rising above the 4 river gods on the 4 continents and spreading Papal authority. This obelisk is a Roman imitation of Egyptian obelisks and it was built in the ~first century AD.
Written July 4, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Annie_T70
Melbourne, Australia689 contributions
Jun 2019 • Couples
Simplest spectacular as you walk through all the fountains and squares, you’ll enjoy them better than the last one you visited. We ate in the square and was not disappointed. Worth doing the walking tour that for sure, otherwise you’d miss these hidden gems.
Written June 7, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

nellielim
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia4,110 contributions
Oct 2018 • Family
This Egyptian obelisk rises above Bernini Four Rivers Fountain in the centre of Piazza Navona. On the top of the obelisk is a dove with an olive branch.
Written December 7, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

SoCalOregonian
Murrieta, CA9,958 contributions
Mar 2018 • Couples
Arising from the center of Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi, this 55-foot tall spire, cannot be missed in the piazza. Atop this spire is a dove with an olive branch in its mouth. This Egyptian obelisk originated in the area of Aswan, which had no inscriptions, but was decorated after arrival in Rome. It is named after the stadium that originally occupied the area of Piazza Navona.
Written June 22, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Obelisco Agonale (Rome) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go

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