medieval bridge

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Cultural heritage. Castles

medieval bridge

The Medieval Bridge was built on a bridge originally from Roman times on which was circulating a branch of the Roman Silver Road that linked Piedrahita with the capital of Salamanca. Some scholars claim it was known as the Bridge of Saint Jerome.

The appearance of the bridge over the river Tormes is due to the strategic position of Alba in the Late Middle Ages. Initially it was essential to consolidate the repopulation process of the lands south of the Douro.

Later, it became a crossroads of roads and cattle tracks where muleteers, porters and pastoralists circulated. In it the flocks of the Cordeles de Amatos, Arca de los Frailes, Ciudad Rodrigo and Torrejón, las Veredas de Ejeme, Pedrosillo and Salamanca converged.

In its left margin was the fielato, a small construction that was used as a control of passage; in the middle there is a ramp, called the "Quebrada" that served as a buttress and as access to wash clothes and water the cattle from the Alcazar Island, disappeared with the construction of the Azud de Villagonzalo.

The old bridge consisted of 26 arches, each different. Since its construction it has suffered the passage of the hectic history of Albense: in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries overflows occurred at different times caused by the abundant rains that forced its restoration.

In the War of Independence, the Bridge became a strategic location, both on 28 November 1809 at the Battle of Alba de Tormes and in the retreat of the French following the Battle of Arapiles in July 1812 or the withdrawal of the British on 14 November 1812 which ended with the blasting of a bow of this. 

Today, the majestic Medieval Bridge, with its 23 arches, continues to witness the history of the Ducal Village.

 

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