The Ídolo Fountain (Portugese: Fonte do Ídolo), is an ancient Roman / Lusitanian fountain located in the city of Braga, Portugal. It is considered one of the most important archaeological sites in the region.
The Fonte do Ídolo is believed to have been built during the 1st century AD when Braga, known as Bracara Augusta, was an important Roman city. It is thought to have been part of a larger complex dedicated to water supply and possibly religious rituals.
The fountain is constructed from granite and features an intricate design. It consists of a rectangular basin with a carved façade depicting various elements. The central motif is a figure known as the “idol,” from which the fountain derives its name. The idol is believed to represent Nabia, a local deity or a personification of the source of water.
Carvings and Inscriptions
The façade of the fountain is adorned with several carvings and inscriptions. These include depictions of water nymphs, cupids, and other mythological figures. The inscriptions are written in Latin and provide information about the construction and dedication of the fountain.
Excavations carried out in the vicinity of the Fonte do Ídolo have revealed other remains, such as a Roman road, an aqueduct, and a large water tank. These discoveries suggest that the fountain was part of a broader water management system within the Roman city.
The Fonte do Ídolo is currently housed in a small museum building adjacent to the original site. The museum provides visitors with information about the fountain’s history, Roman culture in Braga, and the archaeological findings associated with the site.
The Fonte do Ídolo is an important historical and archaeological attraction in Braga, offering insights into the Roman presence in the region. Its unique design and ancient origins make it a fascinating destination for history enthusiasts and tourists alike.