Monday, May 21, 2012

Wallace Fountains of Paris


If you've traveled to Paris,
you'll recognize these fountains. 
Named the Wallace Fountains after the philanthropist 
and Englishman Richard Wallace (1818-1890) who,
after receiving a rather large inheritance,
decided Paris should benefit. 

They serve as drinking fountains found throughout the city
and these larger models (there are several kinds)
are decorated with caryatids and dolphins.
The caryatids (sculpted female figures serving as columns) represent
kindness, simplicity, charity and sobriety.



Designed by Wallace and Charles-Auguste Lebourg,
a sculptor from Nantes,
they were meant to help the city's inhabitants after the Paris Commune 
when many of the aqueducts had been destroyed and the price of water rose. 

While I have not drunk from them,
I have used them to spritz myself on hot summer days. 
They can be found in nearly every arrondissement 
and while reading about these beauties, 
I just learned there is more than one in our 15th arrondissement neighborhood
though I have yet to find them.

Always a treasure hunt in Paris! 

(Photographs copyright: Kirsten Steen)

2 comments:

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Ahhhhhh....for me, Paris is a PLEASURE HUNT. What beauty. Dearest, I so wish you would participate in the Paris link party; you would be PERFECT with all of your stunning photos and tales of the CITY OF LIGHTS!!!!!!! Anita

Relyn said...

How interesting. I do love public gifts. One of my favorite is at a state park on the Oregon coast. A parent gave an incredibly powerful telescope in memory of their lost son. It's trained on a huge rock that is home to thousands of sea birds. I love that spirit of giving. What a wonderful way to honor someone.