The Pont du Gard is a three-level stone aqueduct crossing the Gardon river valley, about 25 km west of Avignon. A road bridge was added to the structure in and used until The site is now well maintained and a very popular tourist attraction.
The water conduit or specus, which is about 1. The upper levels of the bridge are slightly curved in the upstream direction. It was long believed that the engineers had designed it this way deliberately to strengthen the bridge's structure against the flow of water, like a dam wall.
Over the centuries, this process has produced the current deformation.
The blocks were precisely cut to fit perfectly together by friction alone, eliminating the need for mortar. Many blocks were numbered and inscribed with the required locations, such as fronte dextra or fronte sinistra front right or front leftto guide the builders.
A surveyor or mensor planned the route using a groma for sighting, the chorobates for levelling, and a set of measuring poles five or ten Roman feet long. His figures and perhaps diagrams were recorded on wax tabletslater to be written up on scrolls. The builders may have used templates to guide them with tasks that required a high degree of precision, such as carving the standardised blocks from which the water conduit was constructed.
Much of the work could have been done using simple sheers operated by a windlass. For the largest blocks, a massive human-powered treadmill would have been used; such machines were still being used in the quarries of Provence until as late as the start of the 20th century.
Large blocks were left protruding from the bridge to support the frames and scaffolds used during construction. Note the missing stonework atop the aqueduct. The road bridge adjacent to the aqueduct. Pedestrians are shown for scale. The round holes were where the city's water supply pipes connected to the tank.
Pont du Gard seen from the river Gard Although the exterior of the Pont du Gard is rough and relatively unfinished, the builders took care to ensure that the interior of the water conduit was as smooth as possible so that the flow of water would not be obstructed. The walls of the conduit were constructed from dressed masonry and the floor from concrete.
Both were covered with a stucco incorporating minute shards of pottery and tile. It was painted with olive oil and covered with maltha, a mixture of slaked limepork grease and the viscous juice of unripe figs.
This produced a surface that was both smooth and durable. Later aqueducts had a more sophisticated design, making greater use of concrete to reduce their volume and cost of construction.
The Aqueduct bridge of Segovia and the Pont de les Ferreres are of roughly similar length but use far fewer arches. Roman architects were eventually able to do away with "stacking" altogether. At the time, he was serving as aedilethe senior magistrate responsible for managing the water supply of Rome and its colonies.
On this basis, a team led by Guilhem Fabre has argued that the aqueduct must have been completed around the middle of the 1st century AD.
Its survival was due to its use as a toll bridge across the valley. In return, they were responsible for maintaining the bridge in good repair.
To make space for his artillery to cross the bridge, the duke had one side of the second row of arches cut away to a depth of about one-third of their original thickness.
This left a gap on the lowest deck wide enough to accommodate carts and cannons, but severely weakened the bridge in the process. A new bridge was built by the engineer Henri Pitot in —47 next to the arches of the lower level, so that the road traffic could cross on a purpose-built bridge.
The work involved substantial renovations that included replacing the eroded stone, infilling some of the piers with concrete to aid stability and improving drainage by separating the bridge from the aqueduct.
|Experience||You can unsubscribe at any time. For more information, read our privacy statement.|
Stairs were installed at one end and the conduit walls were repaired, allowing visitors to walk along the conduit itself in reasonable safety. It has survived three serious floods over the last century; in the whole of the lower tier was submerged by a giant flood that washed away other bridges, and in another major flood affected the area.
A further flood struck inbadly damaging nearby installations. The outstanding quality of the bridge's masonry led to it becoming an obligatory stop for French journeymen masons on their traditional tour around the country see Compagnons du Tour de Francemany of whom have left their names on the stonework.
From the 18th century onwards, particularly after the construction of the new road bridge, it became a famous staging-post for travellers on the Grand Tour and became increasingly renowned as an object of historical importance and French national pride.
Twelve young girls dressed as nymphs came out of a cave by the riverside near the aqueduct and presented the king with pastry and preserved fruits.
The commission was meant to reassert the ties between the French monarchy and the imperial past. As the architect Jean-Paul Viguier put it, the "appetite for gain" had transformed the Pont du Gard into "a fairground attraction".The Pont du Gard is near Nîmes, Uzés and Avignon, in the heart of a region with a rich historical heritage..
The most visited ancient monument in France, listed a world heritage site by Unesco, the Pont du Gard aqueduct remains one of humankind's great masterpieces.
Pont du Gard Tours and Trips / Find the right tour for you through Pont du Gard. We’ve got 34 tours going to Pont du Gard, starting from just 4 days in length, and the longest tour is 23 days. Get the Vers-Pont-du-Gard weather forecast.
Access hourly, 10 day and 15 day forecasts along with up to the minute reports and videos for Vers-Pont-du-Gard, France from yunusemremert.com The Pont du Gard, registered as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in , is a wonderful historical engineering marvel located in the middle of a naturally beautiful landscape.
We were accompanied by Lysianne Boissy d’ Anglas of the Gard Tourisme Office and it couldn’t have been a better experience. Pour visiter le site du pont du Gard, deux solutions: soit garer sa voiture dans l’un des parcs de stationnement et payer le droit d’entrée dans le Site (8,5 euros par personne en ), soit laisser son véhicule en dehors du périmètre du site, de préférence dans un endroit autorisé et marcher.
Gard (French pronunciation: ; Occitan: Gard [gaɾ]) is a department in southern France in the Occitanie region.. The department is named after the River Gardon, and the Occitan name of the river has been replacing the French name of the department in recent decades, even among French speakers.