When in Florence, everybody goes to see the famous Ponte Vecchio (the Old Bridge) on the River Arno, but not everyone knows about a statue of a wild boar, tenderly called Il Porcellino, which means “piggy”. The statue is in fact a small fountain and is situated quite close to the bridge, in Mercato Nuovo (the Straw Market).
As far as I know, it is a copy of a copy - Pietro Tacca made one in the 17th century, basing it on some Greek statue. Now, as many people touch it, a copy has been made to replace the original.
Why touch it? There is a superstition that if you touch Il Porcellino, you will come back to Florence. Another one says it brings good luck. People like stories like that. Well, see for yourselves how shiny the piggy’s snout is from rubbing it ;-)
There is also another way of bringing yourself good luck - you put a coin inside the Porcellino’s mouth and watch it drop. And here we have two possibilities - if the coin falls down into the grate that is at the foot of the fountain, it means good luck. If it doesn’t - try once again ;-)