Its current placement, embedded in the rock of a little seaside cliff, makes it difficult to imagine there was ever a time when it provided fresh water to both local residents and the fishermen who plied the area.
The well did not always occupy this odd location; in fact, it was not even on the coastline but sat several metres back from it. But, at some point, the terrain that separated it from the sea broke off, sheering back the coastline and repositioning the well at the water’s edge. Originally, the well was also furnished with a drinking trough for animals and even had a second opening in the nearby forest from which water could be drawn.
The first mention we have of the well’s existence dates back to 1642, when it was referenced in a document under the name Pou d’en Lleó, that is “well of Lleó” the sobriquet then in use for all those whose surname was Torres. Like other wells on the island, it became a meeting place during summer festivals with local residents gathering here every 8th August to dance and celebrate the Saint Cyriacus festival.
According to island lore, a long, long time ago some farmers found a corked bottle next to the well. They opened it and out popped a fameliar. This imp, like all other fameliars, devoured any and all food in sight unless he was given work to do. The farmers tried, without success, to get rid of him by sending him off to wash black wool until it turned white, to count all the stars in the firmament, to count the hairs on a cat…all in vain until they came up with the idea of bidding the fameliar to fill up the well with saltwater and, when it was full, to change it back into fresh water… and then to change it back into saltwater again and so on and so forth for evermore. And that is how they finally rid themselves of the fameliar.