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Function and Form

By budapestbill    
Because of Marrakechs' hot, semi-arid climate, water is a precious resource, and harnessing its refreshing, life-giving properties is an important part of Moroccan culture.

This is reflected in the architecture of Marrakech, with the hammams celebrating water and its interaction with the human body, and the centuries-old fountains of the Medina in Marrakech that, at the start of the 1900s, they were used for everything from supplying the public baths, to cooking, watering orchards and gardens, and giving water for animals to drink.

Each neighbourhood had its own fountain, and life structured itself around it.

Now that Marrakech homes and public spaces have plumbing, the fountains (of which there are about 80 in the Medina), serve as a gathering and gossip place.

Some of them operate and some do not, but at the fountains that still produce water, it is a good place to wash and cool one’s feet on a hot day.

Often made of intricate mosaic tiles and terracotta, these fountains are as photogenic as they are historic. Each fountain is a bit different, however, with some purely functional and others imbued with spiritual beauty.

Tags: Morocco Marrakech Medina Architecture Water fountains Mosaic tiles Hammams

Voters: estonian, BillRookery, bobpaige1 and 1 more


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