Acqua Vergine: The Answer to Rome's Water Problems

Prior to 273, when the 1st elevated aqueduct, Aqua Anio Vetus, was established in Roma, inhabitants who resided on hills had to go further down to collect their water from natural sources. When aqueducts or springs weren’t accessible, people dwelling at raised elevations turned to water removed from underground or rainwater, which was made available by wells and cisterns. To furnish water to Pincian Hill in the early sixteenth century, they employed the new strategy of redirecting the motion from the Acqua Vergine aqueduct’s underground channel. All through the length of the aqueduct’s network were pozzi, or manholes, that gave access. Although they were initially designed to make it possible to service the aqueduct, Cardinal Marcello Crescenzi began using the manholes to collect this link water from the channel, opening when he acquired the property in 1543. Reportedly, the rainwater cistern on his property wasn’t sufficient to satisfy his needs. Fortunately, the aqueduct sat under his property, and he had a shaft opened to give him accessibility.

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