TOP - a recommended destination in České Budějovice
The famous symbol of České Budějovice – the Samson Fountain – is located in the middle of Přemysl Otakar II Square. This grandiose Baroque work was built as part of the city renovation after the Thirty Years’ War in 1720-1727 and was intended for the distribution of water to the city’s side streets. It consists of a stone reservoir, one of the largest in the country with a diameter of 17 meters. Projecting from its center is a rectangular pedestal with four gargoyles, on which stand four Atlases holding up a round shell with a sculpture of the biblical Samson taming a lion. Samson was known for his great strength, which helped him defeat the Philistines. However, he was betrayed by his girlfriend Delilah. She disclosed the fact that his strength consisted in his long hair. She cut it off and the Philistines then easily overpowered him.
Initially, the workers had difficulties transporting the giant shell to Budějovice from the quarry at Besednice near Trhové Sviny, where it was carved. The Vienna Gate had to be widened to make way for the shell heading for the town square. It was hauled by 62 horses. The unique structure was designed by Jesuit F. Baugaut of Jindřichův Hradec, and the sculptures were made by J. Dietrich.