THE FOUNTAIN OF VIA RE (RE’S STREET)
Just from this small fountain, until the early sixties of the twentieth century, was still clearly visible the Vaso Ré (the Rè Duct) made up of cement, that ran down up to the large square where today you still find the wash-house.
A low wall protected the passers-by and a little after the fountain there was a stone wash-house under the open sky, which served for the same reason of the one placed a bit further on.
From a photographic document of 1950, that portrayed a bridal procession, you can see well the cobbled paving street, the small wall with the wayside posts and at its back the Vaso Ré (the Rè Duct) in masonry and then the roofs of the forges with the “finestrai”.
Instead of the large square there were two forges placed one above the other, in fact, they had been built on the steep plot that sloped down to Via Glere (Glere’s Street) or until the Mill Museum.
It is probable that they must have been rebuilt after the terrible flood of 1634, which devastated completely the area creating also that big drop. Very little images document the presence of these productive buildings placed just in the heart of the old town centre; from the sights of the Dosso you can locate the continual roofs of the forges, on the contrary, today we can see the large square supported by high cement pillars.
The fountain of Via Re (Re’s Street) has a leaning half-goblet shape with a floor and it is one of the five fountains of the same type diffused in the old town centre of Bienno.
It was built in the half of the nineteenth century in marble of Botticino, on a semicircular basement with a moulded shaft from which develops the rounded basin with a curved edge.
From the floor with a curvilinear shape comes out the gargoyle and a volute hook in order to support the bucket.
This fountain reminds us as a witness of the presence of the Vaso Ré (the Rè Duct) that flows under the road and you can see it from the glass partition inserted in the pavement.
It is important to point out how the bottom of the duct still preserves the large stones smoothed down by the water.