Florida | Fountain of Youth

Once upon a time, in a place far away, there was a spring as rare as it was coveted, from which water gushed forth that had the power to make people young and vital again. They called it the fountain of youth. Everyone has talked about it: books, ancient literature and films, the fountain of youth has inspired artists from all over the world, as well as explorers who have travelled the length and breadth of the globe in search of this elixir of eternal life. But does the mythological spring really exist or is it just legend? In medieval and renaissance popular literature a recurring element that is strongly poetic and evocative is the water of life, the mystical fountain of youth. The theme, however, is certainly much more ancient, in fact water has always been a cosmogonic element par excellence that creates, heals, regenerates and purifies. However, it seems that over the years this magical place has found its place in Florida, exactly in St. Augustine. Apparently it was discovered by the Spanish explorer Ponce de Leon, now the place where the spring existed is the Archaeological Park of the Fountain of Youth, a real tourist attraction that attracts thousands of visitors every year. If you want to know if when the Spanish explorer arrived in Florida he made sure of the miraculousness of the spring water, the answer is no. That’s why this version never really convinced everyone. In fact, many people claim that the true source of youth is in Ethiopia and that its origins are very ancient. In order to find confirmation we have to leaf through some texts of ancient Greek literature and in particular Herodotus. It was he who wrote about a water with very special properties that guaranteed longevity to those who drank it. The spring where the magic water flowed was in Ethiopia. Even the tales of Alexander the Great reveal that the Macedonian King left in search of a spring of water in the land of darkness, which could have been Ethiopia. Yet Florida has several arguments to support the presence of the legendary source in its territories. In particular, the existence of white sand in the country seems to offer some interesting insights. It has been said many times that Florida’s beaches, particularly the areas of Clearwater and Sarasota, are places with an important concentration of energy that can heal both the body and the mind. Many people support the therapeutic effects of the quartz sand that has characterized the white beach of the tropical island since time immemorial. What if the water is really just a metaphor for Florida beaches? Maybe that would solve the mystery of the spring of youth forever.

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