Thursday, 23 March 2023
A Historical Fountain in Meram, Konya with Sacred Significance

A Historical Fountain in Meram, Konya with Sacred Significance

Balıklı Fountain is located in the neighborhood of Ihtiyareddin (today known as Sükran) which is affiliated with Meram, on a street with the same name. The neighborhood, where Greeks lived until the Republic era, is an old settlement area dating back to the Roman period.

The facade of the fountain made of marble is defined by a curved arch supported by simple legs. There is a triangular pediment in the center of the three-tiered cornice and brackets at the corners. It was built in 1901.

While the architecture of the fountain resembles other fountains of the period, it features two fish figures in the middle with the word "apa" on its inscription. This name, pronounced as "apa" in Turkish, is commonly seen in many places in Konya, such as the Apa village, Apa dam, and Altınapa. The word "apa" also means water.

When examined closely, a dot can be seen above one of the legs of the letter "p" and below the other. It is understood that the word "apa" represents 1901 based on a similar chronological calculation as the one used by Greeks.

This date is also written numerically. According to study, a Seljuk manuscript with a fish figure dated M 1220 from the castle was once kept on this fountain before being transferred to a museum. This reveals that the fish figure was considered holy by both Muslims and Christians. Indeed, if one carefully looks at the top of the fountain, one word is seen written as "ICQUS." Prof. Dr. Thomas Drew Bear explains that the word, which means fish, forms a sacred sentence using its initial letters:

I Jesus

C Christ

Θ Theos (God)

Y Son

S Savior