A man threw a bucket of red paint or dye into Rome's Trevi Fountain on Friday, coloring the waters of the 18th century monument bright red in front of a crowd of astonished tourists and locals, witnesses said.
The man escaped, leaving the fountain, which normally runs on a closed cycle, spouting red water. Police arrived at the scene and technicians briefly shut off the water before restoring a clear flow.
The monument, designed by architect Nicola Salvi, has been a tourist hotspot since Federico Fellini's 1960 movie "La Dolce Vita," which featured actress Anita Ekberg seductively splashing in the fountain's waters. Many visitors flip a coin into the fountain, as tradition says that doing so promises a prompt return to the Eternal City.