La Bocca Della VeritaFree: All time

La Bocca della Verità (The Mouth of Truth) is an image, carved from Pavonazzo marble, of a man-like face, located in the portico of the church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin. The sculpture is thought to be part of a first-century ancient Roman fountain, or perhaps a manhole cover, portraying one of several possible pagan gods. The most famous characteristic of the Mouth, however, is its role as a lie detector. Starting from the Middle Ages, it was believed that if one told a lie with one’s hand in the mouth of the sculpture, it would be bitten off. The Mouth of Truth is known to English-speaking audiences mostly from its appearance in the 1953 film Roman Holiday. If you’re a movie and history buff, it’s probably worth the long wait to have your picture taken with the sculpture. If not, the long queue may deter you. Nevertheless, you can visit the church itself (small donation requested) while you’re there.

Address: Via della Greca, 4
Direction: Subway Line B to Circo Massimo; Bus No. 3, 60, 75, 81, 118, 160, 175, 271, 628.
Phone: +39 06 679 3609

Photo credit: Roman Holiday, KlausF, Roughneck