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The Ross Fountain, Edinburgh

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The Ross Fountain stands below the castle at the west end of Princes Street Gardens. It was operational in 1872 and was a gift to the city from Daniel Ross, a local gun-maker. He bought it at the International Exhibition of 1862 in London. Made of cast-iron in Paris it was sculpted by Jean-Baptiste Klagmann.
At the top a figure holding a cornucopia, below that four figures depicting Art, Science, Poetry and Industry. On the bottom tier lion's head spouts and mermaids.
Not everybody was happy with it. Dean Ramsay, the incumbent for 40 years of St John's Episcopal church which looks down on the fountain, described it as 'Grossly indecent and disgusting; insulting and offensive to the moral feelings of the community and disgraceful to the City'. Other Edinburgh burghers may well have shared his feelings. He did not have to live with it for very long, he died in 1872 at the age of 79.


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The plaque by the fountain


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