Campo de' Fiori (The Field of Flowers) is a square located near Piazza Navona in Rome. The name comes from a meadow which was situated in that place during the Middle ages, even though it had already been a market. Some try to connect the name with a mistress of Pompeius because he has founded a famous theatre next to the square. Nevertheless, there is no evidence to confirm that speculations.
In ancient Rome the area was not built-up, and it was located in between The Theatre of Pompey and the Tiber river. In the 13th century the Orsini family settled down in that place, but it still was more like a meadow than a square. At the turn of the 14th and the 15th centuries there was the Santa Brigida Church built and since then new buildings have started to emerge around the square. In the middle of the 15th century, the square was paved as a part of a plan of laying a sett in that neighbourhood. As a result, more dense buildings have appeared. The first newly built renaissance palace Palazzo della Cancelleria was created in that period.
Campo de' Fiori became a marketplace as well as an area with a strongly developing cultural activity. The names of the surrounding streets are connected with surnames of different merchants and craftsmen. During times when Sykstus IV was a pontiff, there was a road in the middle of the square leading from the Basilica of St. John Lateran to the Vatican. It caused a growth of an economic, religious and cultural meaning of the place. Many hotels and inns were built then, attracting merchants ant travellers coming to the greatest market and a horse trade.
In the square there is a monument of the philosopher Giordano Bruno who was executed during the inquisition for preaching his views. It was created by Ettore Ferrari in 1887 to commemorate this tragedy. The sculpture is faced towards the Vatican, what was interpreted as emphasizing the freedom of speech and the opposition to the Church.
Nowadays, the square is a famous place for evening meetings and is often visited by tourists wanting to feel the spirit of Italy.