Ponte Milvio Bridge in Rome


Along the Via Flaminia we are approaching the Milvio Bridge, on which the battle between Maxentius and Constantine took place. The wooden bridge was originally mentioned by Titus Livy in 207 BC. The stone bridge was built in 109 BC. censor Mark Emilius Scavre. This is the oldest bridge in Rome, more than 2000 years old.

The strategically important bridge has witnessed many historical events, the most famous of which is the battle between the usurper Maxentius and the challenger Constantine (Constantine I the Great) in 312 AD. Having defeated the enemy, Constantine with a fluttering standard with a cross solemnly headed for Rome on October 28, 312.

The location of the Milvian Bridge at the northern end of the Champ de Mars made it a place where Roman legionaries trained for centuries, where the generals gathered troops both for the defense of the city and in order to go on campaigns of conquest or punitive expeditions. On the other side of this bridge, those who came to conquer Rome made parking, so that the bridge often found itself in the center of the most dramatic events.

The Milvian Bridge retained its value as a military bridge even after the end of the ancient era, and by no means always did it to its advantage. In 538, during the battle between the Byzantine expeditionary force of Belisarius and the Goths, the bridge was significantly destroyed. In 1335, during the armed conflict between Orsini and Colonna, the bridge was damaged again. The last time the Milvio Bridge suffered at the hands of Garibaldi's soldiers. The bridge was restored only in 1870.

Many celebrities entered Rome through it as conquerors and triumphants. The most famous among them are Gaius Julius Caesar (after crossing the Rubicon) and Charlemagne, in 799, when he came to Rome in order to revive the empire.

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Until 1956, the Milvio Bridge was used by car traffic until it was added to the list of protected monuments in Italy. Now the Milvio Bridge can only be crossed on foot. Its length is 136 meters.

The Milvio Bridge today connects the historical part of Rome with the peripheral areas of the city. Today, the Milvio bridge is known for being visited by couples in love, in order to capture their feelings, they hang padlocks on the lampposts of the bridge, and throw the keys into the river (so that no one can break their love).

Several years ago, one of the lampposts of the bridge collapsed under the weight of the castles, and in 2007 the authorities decided to remove thousands of these symbols of the fortress of marriage from the bridge, but the public opposed this action, and bunches of locks remained in their places, adding new ones.