A fountain is a model which can eject water. They can be decorative, purely functional or both. Those that are solely for decoration are commonly used in outdoor spaces such as in gardens and ponds, contributing to beautiful and tranquil atmospheres.
Not only do they look graceful but the sound of water trickling from fountains can be extremely relaxing and, to some people, satisfying.
History of Fountains
Most of human life has, is and will revolve around water, the purest element. Humans are also made from around 60 percent water, so it is no surprise that this element is vital to human existence. Used for both drinking and travel, past civilisations would be built around sources of water, making rivers and springs integral assets to populations.
It is uncertain where the first fountains were created, but historians believe one of the first known sculptures was formed from stone, around 2000 BC. This fountain would predominantly have been for holding ceremonial (religious) water, as well as drinking water. Fountains have also been recorded in history to have been found in Mesopotamia around 3000 B.C, consisting of multiple basins and water was sourced from a natural spring.
Ancient Romans were credited as the pioneers, introducing water fountains using complex systems of aqueducts. This transported water from outside Rome into the city to supply decorative fountains as well as public and private baths. The transportation of water via aqueducts simply means it would flow by the laws of gravity. These flows would be induced by holes and pipes, as well as the position of the mountains which the water was sourced from.
Water Fountains Now
Water fountains have come a long way over the years, considering new technologies, materials and many more creative minds working on incredible projects across the world.
The Trevi Fountain in Rome is considered to be the most astonishing fountain in Rome, as well as being the oldest, dating back to 19 B.C. The height of this fountain is around 26 metres, and 20 metres wide. There are many myths about the Trevi Fountain, based on the tossing of three coins.
Throwing ‘one coin is said to mean the person will return to Rome, two coins means you will fall in love with an attractive Italian and the third is that you will marry the person you met’.
One of the tallest water fountains in the world is located in Dubai, opening its incredible display to the residents and tourists in 2009. This famous attraction features 6,600 lights and water is able to shoot up to around 500 feet high - amazingly the same height as a 50-storey building.
Back in the UK, there are some outstanding historic fountains; the Grand Cascade at Chatsworth House is based in Derbyshire and is an open space that people can visit for a day out. The fountain consists of many tiered steps, with water tumbling down. It is 300 years old and is fed by water from 4 different lakes. The Stanway fountain is also featured in the same place - this is the world’s tallest gravity-fed fountain and reaches over 300 feet tall.
Water Fountains at 1st Option
Knutsford is based in Cheshire East and also offers a traditional decorative fountain, maintaining its original centre but updated with modern materials on its outer. This brings it back to life with exposed red brick, pebble landscaping and green plants.
For something more homely and peaceful, check out the beautiful Garnon in Essex. This fountain is surrounded by a serene pond and willow trees which create a wonderful and calm atmosphere for this brilliant outdoor space.