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The Piazza di Spagna is public square in Rome that owes its name to the Spanish Embassy to the Holy See. Ironically triangular in shape, it became one of the most popular meeting places in the city and sits at the foot of the Spanish Steps.


In January 1500, the square hosted a gallows and was a site for the public executions of a Templar popularly known as Il Carnefice, whose home on the nearby Quirinal Hill granted view of the square. That month, Il Carnefice raped a woman named Liva, only to hang her afterwards at the Piazza di Spagna. Before retiring to his home, he threatened to kill her husband as well should he cut down her body for burial. It was while grieving at the gallows that the husband was met by the Assassin Ezio Auditore da Firenze who had just arrived in Rome. Ezio instructed him to feel free to retrieve his wife's body, assuring him that he would deal with Il Carnefice, whom he assassinated soon afterwards.[1]

Centuries later on 23 February 1821, the English Romanticist poet John Keats, dying from tuberculosis, spent his last hours at a flat overlooking the plaza.[1]