Immortalised with running water, how to estabilish a public water fountain.
Of course the reader who originally asked about this subject wasn’t referring to elaborate Ottoman constructions in Istanbul. He had seen something similar to the one in the photo below:
Actually the one we photographed is also quite elaborate, incorporating marble stools so people can sit down to perform their ablutions prior to entering the mosque, which is next door to this particular public tap in Yanıklar village.
The word to look for in Turkish is ‘hayrına’ which means ‘in memory of’ and this structure was erected in memory of Ülkü Karabacak who died on the date shown in 2007. The family paid for the marble construction and they also pay the water bills as there is a water meter attached. Permission to erect something like this is given by the headman (muhtar) of the village and, as this is sited for use primarily by mosque attendees, the imam of the mosque also has to agree. If you wanted to build a tap on the street you would go and seek permission from your local muhtar.
Anyone travelling up and down to Üzümlü will have seen the three or so public taps at the roadside, where many residents of Fethiye go to fill drinking water containers. People out walking in the hills will also have come across taps literally in the middle of nowhere. Apparently these are also often erected in memory of someone, usually on land that the family already own, and take advantage of existing springs or water courses so there are no on-going bills to be met.
We await the first tap erected in memory of a resident foreigner.