Page:The Present State of Peru.djvu/236

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gree of violence that causes it to diffuse itself copiously in the air, in which it seems to dart on every side its liquid arrows. Now gracefully shooting, and taking a curve similar to that of a beautiful plume of feathers, it falls with a festive and harmonious sound; and, as if in raillery, dashes itself against the fluid particles that had been before dispersed, bathing at the same time with its dewy spray the most elevated basin of the fountain[1]. This basin empties itself, by ten pipes, into the second, in which the fluid becoming redundant, is driven, by eight other pipes, into the principal basin. Being there accumulated, it is distributed by a similar number of conductors and their corresponding flutes, which, acting as valves, confine it in certain depositories situated at the foot of the fountain. The compression to which it is there subje6led, occasions it to rise forcibly, and to make good its passage, as well by the pyramids placed at the four angles of the level surface of masonry, as by the eight lions, and the griffons recumbent at their feet, which, with great rapidity, return it to the basin whence it was derived. The abundance of the water which flows, by forty-six pipes [2], forming a kind of convex belt, is highly agreeable, and truly realizes all the embellishment that art and ingenuity could devise.

Our eyes, accustomed to view these surprizing efforts of the

  1. The water, flowing out of this basin, rises somewhat higher towards the cupola of the pharos; that is, it is elevated to the height of thirteeen yards and seven-twelfths, equal to the descent calculated from its primarv source.
  2. The most elevated basin empties itself by ten pipes; the middle one by eight; the lions and griffons by sixieen; and the pyramids by twelve; forming in the whole the above number.