Living History: 5 Amazing European Statues and Fountains

Number 2 on my list, Pallas Athene Fountain, Parliament of Austria (Vienna)

Europe is packed with beauty – from natural landscape to old-style cities. Great architecture is seen all over the continent, it doesn’t really matter which country you’re in.  I find it interesting admiring water fountains and statues because most of them have an interesting background, teaching us with forms and shapes a lot about history, mythology, philosophy, sociology and even politics! Take a look at my selection of 5 gorgeous European water fountains and statues and see how women play an important role in history. Also, interact with me: feel free to send me a picture of your special statues and water fountains as well!

Bavaria

5. Bavaria (Munich)

The statue of Bavaria is huge and is located where Oktoberfest takes place, this green area near downtown. Bavaria is a 19th century female bronze sand-cast statue. It is a female personification of the Bavarian homeland, and by extension it represents Munich’s strength and glory. After all, it is 18.52 meters high. There’s an internal circular staircase that leads up to a platform in the head, where four openings in the helmet provide a view of the Theresienwiese and downtown Munich.

More info: http://www.muenchen.de/sehenswuerdigkeiten/orte/120453.html

Heroes

4. Heroes’ square / Hősök tere (Budapest)

This square is simply beautiful. It is surrounded by the Museum of Fine Arts and the Palace of Arts. The square is constituted by the Millennium Memorial, which gathers statues of important Hungarian figures. On the tall pedestal, there is an image of Archangel Gabriel who holds in his right hand the crown of St. Stephen, the first king of Hungary.

There are two colonnades in which lay 7 statues, for a total of 14 statues. According to Wikipedia: topping the outer edge of the left colonnade is a statue of a man with a scythe and a woman sowing seed, representing Labor and Wealth. At the inner top edge of the left colonnade is a male figure driving a chariot using a snake as a whip representing War. On the facing end of the right colonnade is a female figure in a chariot holding a palm frond representing Peace. In the corresponding position on the top of the right colonnade is a statue of a man holding a little golden statue and a woman with a palm frond representing Knowledge and Glory.

More info: http://www.budapestinfo.org/herossquare.html

Fontana

3. Fontana di Trevi (Rome)

This magical baroque fountain is located in the Trevi district of Rome. It is amazingly 26.3 meters high and 49.15 meters wide. When you’re there, you should throw a coin with your right hand over your left shoulder and make a wish! Sources say that the fountain earns about 3000 euros per day with the coin throwing! The money is well used because it is directed to people in need. When you get there, don’t just imagine yourself dancing in the fountain, like Anita Ekberg in Fellini’s “La Dolce Vita” did, throw a coin and make a wish and take loads of pictures!

More info: http://www.turismoroma.it/

Vienna

2. Pallas Athene Fountain, Parliament of Austria (Vienna)

I find this fountain awesome because this particular image is quite strong. Above it there is a statue of Athena, and lying at her foot there are four images representing Austria’s four main rivers: Danube, Inn, Elba and Vltava. The two images below Athena represent the Executive and Legislative Powers. This sort mythological creature is unfortunately fated to hold this heavy plate forever. There isn’t much about this particular statue’s story, but the shapes are so well made and perfect; they are just breathtaking.

More info: http://www.parlament.gv.at/

Manneken

1. Maneken Pis (Brussels)

By far this is the most iconic statue ever. It is my personal favorite because above all it is simply funny to see a little guy urinating in a fountain! The only downside of it is that it is a ‘petit’ statue, only 61 centimeters high. Apart from that, it is a must see! On commemorative dates, the government dresses him up with funny little clothes. Manneken Pis is located at the junction of Rue de l’Étuve/Stoofstraat and Rue du Chêne/Eikstraat. To find it, take the left lane next to the Brussels Town Hall from the famous Grand Place and walk a few hundred meters southwest via Rue Charles Buls/Karel Bulsstraat. Don’t forget to visit his sister, Jeanneke Pis, which is located on the east side of the Impasse de la Fidélité / Getrouwheidsgang (Fidelity Alley), a narrow cul-de-sac some 30 meters long leading northwards off the restaurant-packed Rue des Bouchers / Beenhouwersstraat.

More info: http://www.brussels.be/artdet.cfm/4328

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