The famous Lions of Heraklion

The Venetians created them, the Turks distorted them and the Greeks restored them

The Morosini Fountain is located in Lions Square (officially: Eleftherios Venizelos Square), in the center of Heraklion and is considered as one of the most beautiful Venetian monuments in Crete. When it was built it offered a solution to the city’s water problem, with reports saying it was supplying citizens with 1,000 barrels of water per day.

lions of heraklion, The famous Lions of Heraklion


The project took 14 months to complete, with its opening on April 25, 1628. The project was inspired by the Venetian Franciscan Morosini, who gave the project his name.

lions of heraklion, The famous Lions of Heraklion

The themes of the reliefs in the lobes were taken from Greek mythology and mainly from the sea world.

In the beginning, a statue of Poseidon was placed above the fountain. This statue is not preserved today as it was destroyed by the Turks or by an earthquake.

In 1847 Turks added marble columns enclosed at the top with a marble strip on which they wrote in gilded letters “Fountain Abdul Mejit”. They also installed taps, destroying the bas-reliefs.

In 1900 the monument was restored to its original form.

Today it is one of the most famous monuments of Heraklion and the most famous meeting point for the citizens!

lions of heraklion, The famous Lions of Heraklion

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