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Bānūži Holy Spring (Bānūžu Svētavots)

Location
State:
Latvia
Region:
Vidzeme
County:
Vecpiebalga
Parish:
Taurene
Other references to the location
In the north-west end of the Bānūži Lake
Coordinates
lat=57.157204343419, lon=25.570962840632
57° 9' 25" N, 25° 34' 15" E
Description

Local archaeological heritage (State Inspection for Heritage Protection, No 582). From the Bānūži Hill Fort 12 springs flow out, out of which the post popular one is the Holy Spring (Svētavots) situated not far from the Bānūži–Skujene road in a low meadow. It is assumed that the name of the Bānūži Holy Spring originates from the times when nearby a wooden castle was standing on the Hill Fort of the Bānūži Lake. (Urtāns, 1993)

Narrative

In the written sources of the 19th century it was mentioned that near the Bānuži Hill Fort there used to be the Jānis' Hill with a large old oak, at which people used to sacrifice. The Holy Spring, Bānūži Hill Fort and

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the Jānis' Hill with the oak used to be, probably, parts of some unified sacred site complex. (Urtāns, 1993) A tale narrates that the spring can treat all diseases. It was blessed by an Orthodox Church priest (Cēsis Tourism Information Centre, 2012b). The water of the Bānūži Holy Spring was taken by people home in tubs since ancient times. In winter time those tubs were placed in the cold antechamber. The water taken from a well froze up, but the water taken from the spring did not freeze. The nearby area of the Bānūži Holy Spring was ameliorated in 1960s, thus the spring became weaker (Jansone, 2012). "In the meadows of the Bānūži manor house there is a spring named Holy Spring. Once a shepherd pastured cows in the meadow around the spring and noticed that a barrel with money appeared jingling from the spring. At that very moment wolves ran into the cattle and attacked a bull. The shepherd started to shout and baited the wolves with dogs. The wolves left the cattle. At that very moment the barrel rolled back into the spring. Since that time the spring has been called the Holy Spring.” (Latvian Folk Tales (Latviešu tautas teikas). 1991)

Attraction
It is a visually attractive, picturesque and spruced up object. Located in a nice birch-tree clump.
Availability
When driving from Krustkrogs, one has to drive a straight ahead a little bit passing by a turning to the Bānūži homestead. Opposite the road leading to the ditch, there is a house with two chimneys. About 1 km from the Bānūži Devil's Stone. There is the brown sign, one cannot see it from the road.
Infrastructure, management, facilities
The nearby surroundings have been facilitated, there is a staircase built of bricks leading to the spring, a groove for taking water fixed with stones. On the spring outlet there is a well, nearby - one more. All facilitation works have been accompli
Local info
There are indication signs, but no other information available. The local people do not know much ab
Capacity
41 and more
Publicity
Known
Legal Status
Municipal property
Comments
The proprietor of the homestead near the Bānūži Devil's Stone ("Mūrnieki” according to GPS, but according to balticmaps.eu — "Stūriņi”) gave directions to the location of the spring. She herself has never been to the spring, because they have a well of their own; the water is taken from the spring mostly by those people who have no wells of their own or people from Taurene, because in the spring situated at the former brewery on the bank of the Gauja River there used to be some chemical pollution. She also said that, probably, it would not be easy to reach it and find. She has not been there herself and thus does not know that in reality it is facilitated and access is very easy.

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