When you visit the area of the Piazza della Signoria and Piazza della Republica in Florence, don't miss this interesting attraction. From Piazza della Signoria, walk towards Piazza della Republica, and on the left side, you'll see Piazza del Mercato Nuovo, which means New Market. It is an open building which houses stalls that sell all sorts of stuff from leathers to clothes, to souvenirs.
On one side of the building, you'll find the Fontana del Porcellino (Porcellino Fountain). Go there and rub the wild boar's nose for good luck. After that, put a coin on the tongue and let it fall with the water into the metal grate below it. It is believed that if your coin falls through below the grate, you will have good luck.
I was observing this group of American tourists trying out their luck here. After a few failed tries, one of the woman in the group made a comment about her friends being cheapskates as they have put only a penny. Apparently, the way the tongue is angled, is that only heavier coins fall through the grate. And truly enough, when the woman put in a quarter instead of a penny, it fell through :-)
It's one of those cheap thrills where you wish for good luck. Well, you never know! You might have the Porcellino luck :-)
Note: This highlight also appears in AFAR Website