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Marmore Falls: Rome’s Beautiful Gift to the World

by Joe Dorish on 21/04/09 at 8:36 am

Marmore Falls are the largest man-made waterfalls in the world and were built by the Romans in 271 BC.

Marmore Falls are located about 5 miles from the city of Terni, which is a provincial capital in Umbria region of central Italy.

Image via Wikipedia

Image via Wikipedia (Umbria)

The falls are the tallest man-made waterfalls in the world and were created by the ancient Romans.

The total height of Marmore Falls is 541 feet but the falls are split into three sections. The top section has the highest total fall at 272 feet.


Marmore Falls were created when the Romans built a canal to divert the flow of the Velino River over the Marmore cliffs in 271 BC. The Romans did this because the Velino River fed swamp land which would become infested with mosquitoes and malaria. While the canal solved the malaria problem it also created another problem for the city of Terni. During the rainy season the diverted water threatened to flood Terni. The issue was such a problem that the Roman Senate debated it and Cicero represented Terni, though nothing was done to solve the issue.

Image via Wikipedia

In 1422, 1545 and 1787 the canal was either rebuilt or modified by order of the Pope. In 1929, a hydroelectric power plant was built above Marmore Falls and today most of the water that used to flow over the falls is diverted to the electric plant.

In order to accommodate tourists visiting the Marmore Falls today, water is allowed to flow over the falls at full force at set times each day.

Visitors can take a path that leads to the top of the falls, and along the path is a tunnel that leads to an observatory near the top where visitors will get absolutely soaked when the water flows at full force.

Liked it

Evelyn Moore

Apr 21st, 2009

Learnt something new here


Apr 21st, 2009

a very interesting article. thanks for the tour.

Kate Smedley

Apr 21st, 2009

You are taking me on a gradual tour of Europe! This is beautiful Joe, stunning pictures, thank you so much, look forward to the next one.

Jo Oliver

Apr 21st, 2009

Very interesting work. Never heard or seen this one before. enjoyed!

K Kristie

Apr 21st, 2009

Interesting read, beautiful falls.

Daisy Peasblossom

Apr 21st, 2009

Quite the engineers, those old Romans. Interesting read, beautiful pics.

R J Evans

Apr 22nd, 2009

Wow! I had never heard of this magnificent place!

I have blogged this – hope you don’t mind…


Bronwyn Van Der Merwe

Apr 22nd, 2009

This is a very interesting and captivating story. Those waterfalls are brilliant. I have definitely learnt something new and interesting today.Thanks for sharing.

Swayam Siddha

Apr 22nd, 2009

I really love this article. Short yet informative. Beautiful falls.Very interesting work.I sure learned something new here.
Thank you very much


Apr 22nd, 2009

Great informative article and pictures. This was one that i didn’t know about. Well done.


Apr 22nd, 2009

Informative as well as interesting and credit for wonderful picture too.

Used to be Shelly

Apr 22nd, 2009

Nice choice of topic the falls are gorgeous


Apr 22nd, 2009

Very well written article.

Agnes Chin

Apr 23rd, 2009

Magnificient. great photos!

j p gallagher

Apr 23rd, 2009

Just plain amazing, very cool.


May 4th, 2009

Nice work.. I like being soaked there.


May 25th, 2009

Beautiful country beautiful falls


Jul 14th, 2009

rome is the most beautiful city in the world despite people choose paris ,rio,venice.rome by far

Jimmy Shilaho

Apr 28th, 2010

An interesting post.

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