Medieval inhabited bridge (London Bridge, 16th century)

Medieval inhabited bridge (London Bridge, 16th century)

In the Tudor Era around 200 buildings were built on the bridge across the River Thames.

History

Keywords

inhabited bridge, Thames, dwelling, medieval, bridge, transportation, England, drawbridge, Great Britain, London, Middle Ages, House of Tudor, chapel, trade, watermill, water wheel, arch, shops, gatehouse, built-in, lifestyle, modern history, 16th century, history

Related items

Questions

  • In which century did the construction of the old London Bridge start?
  • In which century was the old London Bridge completed?
  • What was the width of the old bridge?
  • Across which river was London Bridge built?
  • When was the old London Bridge demolished?
  • How many arches was the bridge supported by?
  • What kind of industrial facility was built on the old London Bridge?
  • What building was in the middle of the bridge?
  • Which of these facilities was not present on the bridge?
  • How many gatehouses were on the bridge at the beginning of the 16th century?
  • What was NOT built on the bridge?
  • Is it true that there was access to the chapel from the river too?
  • What was the width of the roadway on the bridge?
  • Who was the chapel on the bridge dedicated to?
  • Is it true that the arches of the bridge were irregular?
  • Why did it take long to cross the bridge?
  • Is it true that above the bridge there was also a drawbridge?
  • How long was the old bridge?
  • How many buildings stood on the bridge in the Tudor period?
  • What was the orientation of the bridge?
  • Which of these items was not sold on the old bridge?
  • What did workshops use to advertise their products?
  • What kind of mill operated on the bridge?
  • Whom could you certainly NOT have met on the bridge in the 15th century?
  • Whom could you certainly NOT have met on the bridge in the 15th century?
  • What was the biggest hazard threatening the bridge?
  • The bridge was "for wise men to pass over, and for fools to pass under." What does this saying refer to?
  • How many lanes was the roadway divided into?

Scenes

Inhabited bridge

Structure

  • arch
  • pillar
  • starling
  • houses
  • shops, workshops
  • merchants' tents
  • width of the bridge 8 m
  • width of the roadway 4 m

View from the Thames

Walk

Animation

Bird's eye view

  • north (left) bank
  • south (right) bank
  • bridgehead
  • River Thames
  • chapel - St Thomas Chapel The building was two storeys high and was accessible from both the bridge level and the river. In 1548, it was converted into a dwelling house, then later a warehouse.
  • gatehouses
  • drawbridge
  • Tower - By commissioning the construction of the White Tower, William the Conqueror founded the building complex of the Tower.

Watermill

Chapel

Gatehouse

Narration

The construction of London Bridge began in 1176, during the reign of Henry II. The construction works took a long time and the costs were extremely high. It was completed in 1209, during the reign of King John Lackland. The resulting bridge was a unique architectural masterpiece at that time. The bridge was densely inhabited, with over a hundred houses and shops built on it; it was a separate district in Medieval London.

The bridge measured about 8 m in width and 250-300 m in length. In the centre, there was a 2 m wide road, which connected to two banks of the Thames. The pillars of the bridge were linked by spectacular arches. The foundations of the bridge heads were not on the shore, but in the riverbed.

Gatehouses were built on the bridge heads and in the middle. On the two ends, there were wooden drawbridges. At the southern end of the bridge, the spiked heads of executed traitors offered an alarming sight. In the Tudor era, there were nearly 200 buildings on the bridge. Because of the increased traffic, the road was widened and divided into two lanes. Fire often hit the bridge, as the roofs were built of timber.

At the end of the 18th century, it became necessary to replace the almost 600-year-old bridge. The new, iron structure was opened in 1831. In the same year, the old bridge was demolished, today only a few of its elements are displayed in the parks of London.

Related items

Clothing (Western Europe, 10-12th century)

Clothing reflects the lifestyle and culture of the region's inhabitants.

Clothing (Western Europe, 13th century)

Clothing reflects the lifestyle and culture of the region's inhabitants.

Clothing (Western Europe, 14th century)

Clothing reflects the lifestyle and culture of the region's inhabitants.

Clothing (Western Europe, 15th century)

Clothing reflects the lifestyle and culture of the region's inhabitants.

Clothing (Western Europe, 5-10th century)

Clothing reflects the lifestyle and culture of the region's inhabitants.

Leonardo da Vinci’s workshop (Florence, 16th century)

Visit the workshop of the Renaissance polymath and his most influential inventions and works of art.

Medieval keep

Keeps were typical buildings in the Middle Ages, also built independently from castles.

Medieval town

Medieval townhouses were built from stone or brick and were several storeys high.

The Black Death (Europe, 1347–1353)

The bacterial disease known as the bubonic plague is one of the deadliest infectious diseases in the history of mankind.

Tower of London (16th century)

The intriguing history of this historic castle spans nearly a thousand years.

Types of bridges

Types of bridges include beam-, arch-, suspension-, cantilever and truss bridges.

Venice in the Middle Ages

Medieval Venice owed its wealth to its flourishing maritime trade.

Chain Bridge (Budapest)

The Széchényi Chain Bridge, named after István Széchenyi, was the first permanent bridge across the Danube between Pest and Buda.

Golden Gate Bridge (San Francisco, 1937)

The suspension bridge that stretches above the strait between San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean was opened in 1937.

Gutenberg's press (Mainz, 15th century)

Life magazine picked Gutenberg's invention of mechanical movable type printing as the most important event of the second millennium.

Medieval town in Central Europe

Narrow streets and colourful houses gave medieval towns a special atmosphere.

Persian pontoon bridge (5th century BC)

King Darius as well as Xerxes built pontoon bridges across the Bosphorus for the Persian army.

Thermal expansion of bridges

The length of the metal frameworks of bridges change when the temperature changes.

Cromwell´s Ironsides (17th century)

The Ironsides were members of the Parliamentarian cavalry formed by Oliver Cromwell during the English Civil War.

Globe Theatre (London, 17th century)

One of the directors of the circular, open-air Renaissance theatre in London was William Shakespeare.

Medieval smithy

The work of smiths – one of the first professions in history – became even more important in the Middle Ages.

Added to your cart.