Il Porcellino in Italian means piglet, although this bronze statue located in Piazza del Mercato Nuovo is actually a wild boar. It is one of the most famous attractions of the marketplace because people believe that touching the nose of the statue, as well as placing a coin in its mouth, will bring good luck. Under the blazing heat of the sun, the statue stands strong and proud. Fortunately, no one was around the statue at the time the photograph was taken, and so Sakata is able to showcase its full beauty and splendor.
The original sculpture was made around the early 1600s by the baroque artist Pietro Tacca, but the statue in the Piazza is only a replica. The location of the fountain statue is perfect because the Piazza was a trading center for the finest merchants, and so many merchants would use the fountain to wash their hands and drink. The statue has gained worldwide recognition, and copies of it can be seen in various countries throughout the world. Some of these countries include France, Belgium, Germany, and even Japan.
Taken by George Sakata. George was a member of the infamous 100th Division 442nd Nisei Regimental Combat Team in WWII. This was the only Japanese American unit in WWII and was nicknamed the "Go For Broke" unit. The 442nd had a casualty rate of 93% and was awarded 21 Medal of Honors. Click here for more information on the 442nd RCB unit.
This photograph is a great representation of Italian culture, history, and art. Discover more of the heritage of Italy through the following photographs and links as well: Charming Stone Wall and Hedges along Village Street, Gated Clothing Stores and Women Walking along a Quaint Road, and Real Story about the Porcellino Statue.