The Mercury Fountain on the Moritzplatz in Augsburg
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Mercury Fountain

The bronze sculptures of the fountain were designed by Adriaen de Vries and cast in 1599. A cupid at his feet unties Mercury’s sandal to keep the god of trade in the city and to thereby secure its wealth.

Building history and description

  • Monumental fountain in the style of late Mannerism, marble pillars, bronze figures, orientation to Giambologna, originally public drinking and running well, since the establishment of the well grid (about 1713) showpiece
  • Augsburg, city center, Moritzplatz
  • Origin 1596-1599, pillar renewed in 1752, to commemorate it two Rocaille cartridges at the fountain pier, renovation of the bronzes 1996-1997, original bronzes in the Maximilian Museum since 2001
  • Sculptor Adriaen de Vries, foundry Wolfgang Neidhardt
  • 2.69 m high, all-seeing bronze figurines of the Mercury and the Armor
  • at the fountain pier two Medusen heads, dog heads and lion masks (supplement) and four eagle heads as a gargoyle
  • all-seeing sculpture, dynamic movement, upward posture, contrapost, figura serpentinata (winding "snake line" of the figure)
  • Inscriptions on the north side (caretaker Johann Welser and Octavian Sekundus Fugger ordered 1596 well construction), south side (caretaker Oktavian Sekundus Fugger and Quirin Rehlinger accepted well 1599) as well as subsequently on all four sides (renovations)
Mercury
Fountain figur at Mercury Fountain
Mercury Fountain
Fountain figur at Mercury Fountain
Mercury Fountain in front of the Weber House

Use and purpose

  • Roman god of commerce reminiscent of ancient heritage of the city and tradition as a trading metropolis, placement on Moritzplatz (central marketplace of the imperial city of Augsburg) at Weberhaus (important guild)
  • sprezzatura (nonchalance and lightness, which characterizes an ideal courtier), Mercury as a typical representation in lordly contexts (for example, in princely courtyards), thus courtly language of form, choice of subject as a public monument of a imperial city singular
  • Mercury as a messenger of the gods with heraldic staff also as a symbol of civilization and peace, Christian virtue and economic wealth achieved through harmony
  • Amor (little boy at Mercury's feet) ties sandals to keep God's prosperous blessing in the city

 

Authenticity and unique features

  • Fountain bronzes in their best condition, original bronzes due to environmental threats and vandalism today museum exhibits (but this does not contradict the UNESCO requirement of authenticity)
  • Regular care by the city of Augsburg
  • winter protection cover
  • Manneristic artwork of European renown, Triassic splendor fountain in this form unique in the world
  • Glorification of the water through very expensive material Bronze illustrates the significance of the water system for Augsburg

Information and location

General Information:

Opening hours:

24 hours in summer

 

covered in winter with wooden panels

 

The original fountain figures can be visited Tuesday to Sunday from 10-17 clock in the Maximilian Museum.

Contact:

Tourist-Information
Rathausplatz 1, Augsburg
+49(0)821 50207-0
tourismus@regio-augsburg.de

 

Maximilianmuseum Augsburg
Fuggerplatz 1, Augsburg
+49(0)821 324-4112
besucherservice-kusa@augsburg.de

Guided Tours:

Guided tours to "Water in Augsburg" can be booked at the tourist information office on Rathausplatz
 
 
Guided tours of the Maximilian Museum can be booked directly at the visitor service of the art collections and museums

Directions:

With public transportation:  the tram line 1 (towards Lechhausen/Neuer Ostfriedhof) and line 2 (towards Augsburg West P+R) as well as the bus line 32 (towards  Zoo/Botanischer Garten) and 22 (towards Firnhaberau) stop directly at Moritzplatz.  There is absolutely no parking at this location.  We strongly recommend walking, biking or using public transport.

Location:

The Mercury fountain is located directly on Moritzplatz (Moritz square).

Map: