A water folly stuck in the middle of Coimbra, it was always shown in School as one of the few examples of Renaissance Architecture in Portugal. Delicate and elegant, with plenty of whimsy and compositionally based on a Biblical allegory (the fountain of life) it contrasts to what is otherwise the normative heavy Mannerism of the later, Spanish-occupied years of the 16th. c. and beginning of the next.
The design is attributed to Jean de Rouen, a French stonecutter and sculptor from Normandy who came to Portugal at the request of king D. Manuel I. All the detailing is Classic, but the flying buttresses and narrow windows at the side turrets denounce influences from its Gothic context.
Jardim da Manga, Coimbra