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The Wallace Fountains

Have you been walking around the city and wondering about those nice fountains that look like the ones in the big cities as Paris? Then, you have to read this post.

Maybe you don’t know them as Wallace Fountains, but we are pretty sure that sometime you have came across with some of them, because, even though the size is discreet, they are used to be placed in the most crowded areas.

They are fountains of wrought iron with four female caryatids supporting a dome with four fishes. The figures are representing the virtues of Kindness, Simplicity, Charity and Sobriety, which also represent the four seasons: spring, summer, autumn and winter.

The fountains were designed in 1872 by the French sculptor Charles A. Lebourg, commissioned by the English philanthropist Sir Richard Wallace, who wanted a fountain figure that could symbolize the universal brotherhood of mankind. Wallace commissioned hundreds of copies, which afterwards gave to major cities as Paris and Barcelona.

Sir Richard Wallace

During the Universal Exhibition of 1888, Barcelona was awarded with twelve of them, as a present from Sir Wallace to Mr. Rius i Taulet, at that time, mayor of Barcelona.

Nowadays, we can find two original fountains in visible location of the city: One of them next to our Hotel, Arc La Rambla, and closer to the Wax Museum in the same Rambla. The other one we can find it in the street Gran Via de las Corts Catalanes, in the junction with the famous Passeig de Gràcia.

Anyways, you will see lots of them around the city (Ciutadella’s Park, Monumental arena, Diagonal avenue…). In this case they are Neo-Wallace Fountains, meaning that even though the same molds where used to build them, they are not native of the time.

We invite you to check them out, and see the differences between the originals and the copies, if you can… 😉

Do not hesitate to share your pictures with us!