The Mouth of Truth of Rome and its legends

The Mouth of Truth is a huge marble mask that can be found at the entrance of the Church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin in the city of Rome.

The Mouth of Truth is associated with a well-known legend that said that whoever lies loses his hand when he puts it in his mouth.

The legend is explained very well in the famous movie “Roman Holiday” in an unforgettable scene starring Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn.

The tradition of putting your hand in your mouth

Rome - Mouth of TruthThe great popularity of the Mouth of Truth, acquired mainly as a result of the film, makes long queues form next to her to take the typical photo putting her hand in her mouth.

It must be said that many people are a bit disappointed because it is located next to the entrance of the church on a small wall.

The Mouth of Truth represents a bearded male face with a diameter of 1.75 meters and whose initial use is currently unknown.

It dates from the 1st century, although it has been in this place since 1632. Formerly, the legends that revolved around it were somewhat sexist, as it was said that it bit the hand of adulterous women (we do not know if it was also of men who committed adultery)..

Church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin

Rome - Santa Maria in CosmedinSuch is the popularity of the Mouth of Truth that we often forget that it is located outside a church and that it is also one of the oldest in Rome.

It is a medieval church, called Santa Maria in Cosmedin, built in the 6th century on the remains of the Temple of Hercules.

The Church currently does not have much decoration, despite the fact that in previous centuries it was very rich in it.

Now we can highlight the mosaics on the floor, the baldachin or the choir, as well as the glass reliquary where the skull of Saint Valentine is kept.

Of the church we must also highlight its high Romanesque bell tower, dating from the 12th century, as well as its portico under which is the Mouth of Truth. Its crypt is also very interesting where different relics are found.

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