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What figurative expression could I use to describe "an abundant source of"? The context is the following:

the Amazon is a true Free University of Sciences and Philosophy, and authentic ___________ of arts and crafts.

I've found "gold mine", but I believe it wouldn't fit here. Other expressions I considered using were: "cellar" and "granary", but I don't know how they sound for a native. Do they sound very far-fetched?

I don't want the sentence to sound too informal, so I guess I should avoid things like golden goose, cash cow, bonanza, El Dorado.

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    cornucopia synonyms – FumbleFingers May 22 '17 at 16:42
  • @FumbleFingers yeah that's the one I was trying to remember. – Andrew May 22 '17 at 16:43
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    You've limited the choice somewhat with the word authentic. BTW, you need an article, "and an authentic .... of arts and crafts" – Tᴚoɯɐuo May 22 '17 at 18:22
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    I would probably use "a veritable ____" or "a bona fide ____" instead of "an authentic ____" – sirjonsnow May 22 '17 at 20:12
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    Although not the sense you're looking for, but I think a good fit in your context might be sanctuary. – Lucian Sava May 22 '17 at 23:18
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You probably want the word "wellspring":

noun

1. the head or source of a spring, stream, river, etc.; fountainhead.

2. a source or supply of anything, especially when considered inexhaustible: a wellspring of affection.

http://www.dictionary.com/browse/wellspring

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Maybe words like "depository" or "storehouse" will do? A common informal noun is "well"

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    Yes -- well, or spring, or springhead. There's also another word that goes with "well" that's on the tip of my tongue. – Andrew May 22 '17 at 16:42
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    @Andrew Goldmine? Treasure house? Klondaik? – SovereignSun May 22 '17 at 16:45
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    I think it was "wellspring". But anyway OP says he doesn't like "gold mine", and "treasure house" is somewhat synonymous with that. Both fit, in my opinion. – Andrew May 22 '17 at 16:48
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    I guess wellspring and well are synonyns. – SovereignSun May 22 '17 at 16:56
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    Wellspring implies it's the source of the water but it's not as commonly used. "Fountainhead" is another similar watery metaphor. – Andrew May 22 '17 at 17:00
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"Fount" is possible, as in "he was a fount of wisdom".

"Cellar" and "granary" are not idiomatic, but "storehouse" is, with probably the same metaphorical usage.

Also "cornucopia" (as FumbleFingers mentions in his comment).

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