Fuente de Neptuno

The magnificent Fuente de Neptuno depicts the sea-god Neptune in a conch-shell chariot pulled by sea-horses and surrounded by dolphins and seals. A legacy of the Bourbon dynasty of monarchs, it was part of the Salón del Prado project, commissioned by Charles III to provide a spacious avenue with gardens in the Paseo del Prado as a dignified meeting place for Madrid's wealthier classes. The intention was to border the area with two fountains, Neptune and Cibeles, but ultimately a third, Apollo, was added in the centre. The project was started by José de Hermosilla under the supervision of the Count of Aranda, but on Hermosilla's death in 1775, it was taken forward by Ventura Rodriguez.