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Did you know? When it first entered English in the late 16th century, fountainhead was used only in a literal sense—to refer to the source of a stream. By the 17th century, however, it was already beginning to be used figuratively in reference to any original or primary source. In his 1854 work Walden, Henry David Thoreau used the word in its figurative sense, while paying full homage to its literal meaning as well: "Morning air!
1 a point or place at which something is invented or provided. historically, California has served as the fountainhead of that eclectic group of self-actualization movements known as the New Age. Synonyms for fountainhead. cradle, font, fountain, origin, root, seedbed,
foun·tain·head 1. A spring that is the source or head of a stream. 2. A chief and copious source; an originator: "the intellectual fountainhead of the black conservatives" (Jerrold K.
fountainhead noun (CAUSE) [ C usually singular ] formal. a thing, person, or place where something comes from or begins, or that is the cause of something: The weekly journal National Review is recognized as the intellectual fountainhead of modern conservatism.
noun. a fountain or spring from which a stream flows; the head or source of a stream. a chief source of anything: a fountainhead of information.