Pont Neuf: A History


The Pont Neuf: Bridging the Gap Between Old and New

Standing next to the Quartier Latin and the Marrais, connecting the two over a river, is the Pont Neuf. No the word "neuf" in this sense does not mean nine, it means new. And it has a long history with the city of Paris, longer than any other bridge standing today. And with its bastions, it always for people to sit back and look out on the river. So here is a little history on the oldest bridge of Paris.

Replacement of the Pont Notre Dame

The Pont Notre Dame used to be the main bridge connecting the island to the rest of Paris. But it was too heavily trafficked and it wasn't going to hold much longer. So the king ordered a new bridge to be built, giving it the name the Pont Neuf, meaning the New Bridge. The first stone of the Pont Neuf was laid by Henri III, because by that time, Paris finally had enough money to fund the new bridge.

No Houses Here

Up until this point, houses were built along bridges, similar to the Ponte Vecchio in Florence, Italy. But this was the first bridge where no houses were built. It was finished in 1607, when Henri IV was king.

Statue of Henri IV

Mary de Medici

After the death of her husband, Mary de Medici went on a building spree. She built palaces and gardens in honor of her husband's memory. So after his death she had a statue of Henri IV built in the center of the Pont Neuf. During the French Revolution, it suffered some destruction, but it was fixed and still stands there today.

The Longest Bridge

The Pont Neuf is currently the oldest bridge of Paris. It is also the longest bridge in Paris because it connects two sections of the Seine to the Ile de la Cité.

You Might Also Like


Comments? Questions? Advice? Let me know: