The Piazza Repubblica was part of the great redevelopment undertaken when Rome became part of a unified Italy. Under the sweeping 19th Century colonnades there were once elegant shops, but they have been ousted by banks, travel agencies and cafes. In the middle of the piazza stands the Fontana delle Naiadi. Mario Rutelli's four naked bronze nymphs caused something of a scandal when they were unveiled in 1901.
Each reclines on an aquatic creature symbolizing water in various forms: a sea horse for the oceans, a water snake for rivers, a swan for lakes, a swan for lakes, and a curious frilled lizard for subterranean streams. The figure in the middle added in 1911, is of the sea god Glacus, who represents man victorious over the hostile forces of nature. In the immediate vicinity of Piazza Repubblica you have Via Parigi home to the Italian Tourist Board (practically hidden and not advertised) plus the famous shopping of Via Nazionale.