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The origin of the Pont-au-Double

The bridge | Anecdotrip.com / CC-BY-NC-SA
Bridge Pont-au-Double

Near Notre-Dame, it used to be a hospital (Hôtel-Dieu), the first one in the city, founded in the 7th century. But soon, it was outflanked with ill people! They needed more space, more rooms...

In 1602, architect Gamard raised other buildings on the other side of the river Seine. In order to link them to the old hospital, he raised a bridge in 1626. On this bridge, a house for sick persons, Rosary room (salle du Rosaire in French). Everything was completed 5 years later...

But district inhabitants weren’t happy! They were not allowed to cross the bridge! In 1634, a toll was put in the bridge... Thanks to this toll, the hospital became richer... the construction of the bridge was completely repaid!

3 000 persons crossed the bridge every day, between 1744 and 1764... But our bridge was many times destroyed, and dirty wastes thrown by the hospital in the river began to raise a problem...

Finally, the last sick persons were expelled in 1835 and rooms closed little by little. The current bridge was raised in the axis of the rue d’Arcole, in 1882: it had a unique arch and iron replaced stone...

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Passionnée par les balades et par l'Histoire, grande ou petite... pleine de détails bien croustillants, si possible !