For those who have seen Roman Holiday, you might recall the scene with Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck where they make their way down to the church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin. There, Peck tells Hepburn of the ancient Roman legend, one that says whoever places their hand inside “La Bocca della Verita” (The Mouth of Truth), if they are believed to be lying, they will lose their hand. Hesitant, Hepburn is too afraid to test the ancient myth.
My sister at The Mouth of Truth
The Mouth of Truth lives in Rome and many who visit often wonder if the legend holds true. When my sister and I visited Rome, we were among many tourists, who visited the large, concrete mask. Believed to represent a river God, its mouth and eyes are open, waiting for the next liar to insert their precious hand.
Me braving the mighty Mouth
If you will notice in the photos, neither my sister nor I were willing to stick our whole hand into its mouth, hoping that if the legend still existed, we may just lose a few fingers. All joking aside, these concrete masks can be found in various parts of Europe. While visiting Venice, we spotted a much smaller version with a much different design and face.
Mouth of Truth in Venice, Italy
Happy to report that my hands are both still fully functional and intact, one cannot help but feel like Audrey Hepburn when approaching the Mouth of Truth. Let’s just say I’m glad I hadn’t told a lie before sticking my hand in its mouth.
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