The first section, The Fountain of Valle Giulia at Dawn (La fontana di Valle Giulia all’Alba), shows this fountain at daybreak in a pastoral landscape which cattle pass through during the morning.
In the second section, The Triton Fountain in the Morning (La fontana del Tritone al mattino), depicts Naiads and Tritons dancing in the morning light, as figures of the Bernini fountain are seen nearby. Gods and goddesses using conch shells are portrayed by the French horn.
The third section, The Trevi Fountain at Noon (La fontana di Trevi al meriggio), is ushered in by a triumph giving news of a recent victory by the godNeptune.
The final section, The Villa Medici Fountain at Sunset (La fontana di Villa Medici al tramonto), portrays a much more melancholic atmosphere, as the brilliance of the sun fades.
The first movement, Circuses (Circenses), depicts the ancient contest in which gladiators battled to the death, with the sound of trumpet fanfares. Strings and woodwinds suggest the plainchant of the first Christianmartyrs which are heard against the snarls of the beasts against which they are pitted. The movement ends with violent orchestral chords, complete with organ pedal, as the martyrs succumb.
Next, the Jubilee (Giubileo), portrays the every-fiftieth-year festival in the Papal tradition (see Christian Jubilee). Pilgrims approaching Rome catch a breath-taking view from Mt. Mario, as church bells ring in the background.
The third movement, Harvest of October (L’Ottobrata), represents the harvest and hunt in Rome. The French horn solo celebrates the harvest as bells portray love serenades.
The final movement, Epiphany (La Befana), takes place in the Piazza Navona. Trumpets sound again and create a different clamour of Roman songs and dances, including a drunken reveler depicted by a solo tenor trombone.