This is one of the symbols of Rome that you can't miss when visiting.
La Bocca della Verità (the Mouth of Truth) is an image of stone, of a man-like face, located by the church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin in Rome and it portrays one of several pagan gods, probably Oceanus.
What many probably don't know is that at the ancient roman time, it was a drain cover.
During the Middle Ages a new legend was created; Virgilio Grammatico, a wizard, would have build it to uncover husbands and wifes' adultery; once introducing an hand in the mouth, it would have been bitten off if the person was an adulterer.
This legends still exists and there is no Italian kid who is not afraid to accomplish such act of courage; nevertheless during the XV century the legend lost part of his power; at that time a woman, accused of adultery, was brought in front of the mouth but she was able to escape the punishment; in fact, that day the woman's lover went to the square too and, pretending to be crazy, he hug the woman. When she introduced her hand in the mouth she could swear that in her whole life nobody except from her husband and that crazy man had ever hug her, and this saved her hand.
Are you ready for the truth? Don't miss it when you visit Rome!
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