Mouth of Truth in the church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin

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The marble disk Mouth of Truth (Bocca della Verità) in the church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin in the center of Rome


Address: Piazza della Bocca della Verità, 18, 00186 Rome, Italy.
Nearby: Ripa district on the Tiber not far from the Circus Maximus

History: The church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin dates back to the 6th century and houses the famous Boca della Verita (Mouth of Truth), a marble disk with a face known for biting off the hands of liars.

Visit the Mouth of Truth:

Legend: According to legend, if you put your hand in your mouth and lie, you risk having your hand bitten off.

English: The Mouth of Truth   Italian: Bocca della Verità

Photo: Join the fun tradition of putting your hand in your mouth and taking a photo.

Queue: Often a queue forms in front of the Mouth of Truth as all tourists want to put their hand in their mouth, take photos, etc.

Great Youtube video

The Church of Santa Maria of Cosmedin:

Architecture: Admire the 12th century Romanesque façade and the 12th and 13th century bell tower.

Inside: Explore the interior with 9th-century Cosramarama cycle frescoes depicting celestial scenes, saints and angels.

Chapel of San Gregory Nazianzeno: Visit the chapel dedicated to Saint Gregory Nazianzen with 12th century frescoes.

Practical tips for tourists:

Opening times: Daily 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. as far as we know

Admission: Entry to the church is generally free.

Clothing: Please respect the religious environment by dressing appropriately during your visit.

Crowds: Crowds are to be expected, especially around the popular tourist attraction Bocca della Verità. That means lining up and waiting during the season.

Santa Maria in Cosmedin and The Mouth of Truth are a unique mix of history, art and legend. Enjoy your visit, take unforgettable photos with your hand in your mouth.

Important for travelers to Rome: We have only ever seen queues in Europe that are hundreds of meters long or several hours long in Rome. This is especially true for St. Peter’s Basilica, the Colosseum and the Vatican Museums. Be sure to buy skip-the-line tickets online beforehand and skip the queue!: There are such tickets on this link

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