Man fined for acrobatic dives in Italian fountain

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Rome, Nov 17 (IANs/AKI) A homeless Romanian, dubbed ‘Attila the Hun’, was fined 160 euros by police after he staged a spectacular diving display in Rome’s famous 17th-century Trevi fountain.

The Romanian showed the agility of a gymnast, repeatedly climbing to the top of the fountain and performing a series of dives to the amusement of a crowd of tourists and onlookers, many of whom filmed his antics.

“I’ve got it in for the world,” the man told police who arrested him. Police had earlier fined the unnamed man for defacing a wall in a nearby street.

The display ended when police ordered the man clad only in dripping wet black jeans out of the fountain and arrested him.

Ever since Federico Fellini’s 1960 film “La Dolce Vita” when Anita Ekberg and Marcello Matroianni frollicked in the Trevi fountain, tourists have loved to recreate the iconic scene and take forbidden dips in the monument.

Visitors also toss coins into the fountain over their shoulders, which according to tradition means they will return to Rome.

In September 2009, police caught a Dutch tourist carving her name on the celebrated Baroque fountain.

She was charged with damaging monuments but was not arrested.

The Trevi fountain was designed by architect Nicola Salvi and completed by Giuseppe Pannini in 1762. It was originally commissioned from Gian Lorenzo Bernini by Pope Urban VIII.

Salvi used many of Bernini’s touches in the fountain’s design.


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