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Matthias Fountain

Matthias Fountain, in Buda Castle, is one of the most beautiful sculptures in Budapest. It is also contains a hidden love story.

Matthias Fountain
Mátyás kútja
Address: Buda Castle – Hunyadi Court – Budapest
GPS: 47.496137, 19039077

Matthias Fountain is one of the most beautiful sculptures and fountains in Budapest.

The Fountain created in 1904, is in the Buda Castle on the Hunyadi Court.It feature King Matthias on a royal hunt. But within the fountain there is also hidden love story.

The story of Matthias Fountain, this amazingly ornate, beautifully crafted sculpture, is a sad, poignant love story. The story here is a metaphor for the human heart’s never ending hunt for happiness. According to the legend, King Matthias Hunyadi, the fairest king of Hungary, went hunting in disguise. He was often disguised to see the true affairs of the Hungarian Kingdom.

During the hunting, he met a pretty peasant girl called Beautiful Little Helen (Szep Ilonka in Hungarian). They fell in love at first sight, but when she found out that he was the king of Hungary, she realized that their love could never come complete or consummated in a marriage, so she died from a broken heart.

The more you look at Matthias Fountain, the more details become apparent. In the Fountain, you can see Szep Ilonka – on the right side of the Fountain – gently caressing a fragile young deer, watching the hunters in awe. King Matthias is the top figure, the young ruler is triumphantly standing with his deadly bow and arrow on the huge rock by the spring where he shot the stag, looking over his kingdom in full victory. His three dogs came to quench their thirst with fresh spring water, but just like the dogs, his huntsmen aids are on the alert, one of them ready to blow his hunting horn.

The calm sitting figure on the left makes the Fountain symmetrical, he is Galeotto Marzio, the Italian court historian of King Matthias, free from fear, impartially writing the story of King Matthias.

The arrangement of the figures bears resemblance to the famous Trevi Fountain in Rome, therefore, supposedly, if anyone throws coins in the fountain will be back to Budapest.

Interestingly, the Fountain survived the destruction of the World War II with only minor damage (the dog in the middle was destroyed).

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