Bollente Fountain

By dexpartacus | dexpartacus | 12 Oct 2019


In the last article I talked about the "Rotten water fountain" of Acqui terme, a city that hosted my very recent holidays, during which I mentioned "la bollente (the boiling), here we are to present it in all its beauty.

The square you see in the cover photo is called "Piazza della Bollente", which is located in the city downtown, just below the dome you see is the first pic there is the thermal spring that reaches a temperature of 74.5 ° Celsius. Many tourists and locals come to this place with curiosity about touching the boiling water, and then regret it soon after because of the high temperature level if you hold your hand for more than a few seconds, but also to fill bottles and tanks.


Next to the source there is a sign saying:

The octagonal Greek style temple was designed by the Architect Ceruti and constructed in 1870, requested by the mayor Giuseppe Saracco. It has become the symbol of Acqui Terme and its thermal heritage. The water that gushes out originates from a natural thermal spring and reaches the temperature of 74,5°C with a capacity of 560 litres per minute. It has a high mineral content and due to its chemical composition is defined sulphur-bromine-iodine thermal water. Today it is mainly used to treat rheumatologic, orthopaedic, otolaryngologic and gynaecological infections and also pulmonology and angiology related illnesses. Nevertheless, it is also used in dermatology and in gastroenterology other than for beauty treatments.


The city is very well maintained and clean, although unfortunately near the fountain some people leave plastic cups and garbage of various kinds which are promptly removed by local garbage sweeper. During the week spent in Acqui I went to Piazza della Bollente every day to inhale the water vapor and imitating the old local gentlemen by washing my face and massaging my neck with it. As you will have read on the writing of the sign that I mentioned the beneficial properties of this water seem to be a lot.


Before I even went to the source, I check on internet attracted by the pictures and intrigued by the fact that this water was actually hot and I found an article that explains how a decade ago there was an emergency about it that forbade to use the water due to the presence of slight foreign chemical presences, despite the bans some locals continued to drink it and use it to bathe and inhale.


A aged gentleman with whom I had a brief chat in front of the source told me that a curious anecdote that can be found also on Wikipedia: in the past, infants were taken to this source to immerse them for a few seconds and if they managed to get out healthy and safe they were nicknamed "sgaientò", a word that means "burn" in the local dialect. Now I don't know if this tradition is true or not but from my humble opinion it seems plausible, also because I tried to put my hand in the water for a couple of seconds and it is easily sustainable.


A really suggestive square especially at night, where the "small temple" is illuminated by LED headlights placed on the buildings in front of it making it even more characteristic. The source also has an exposed drainage channel, which you can find in the third photo of this article, all the manholes placed in a row in a straight line in front of the square emit steam, I met people who instead of filling their own cans directly from the source they made from the drain with large funnels for their big containers that they wanted to fill in a quickly.


Thanks for watching and reading, a big hug and see you soon! 

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