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Rialto Bridge

The Rialto Bridge is one of the architectural icons of Venice and the oldest of the four bridges that cross the Gran Canal.

It was built between 1588 and 1591 with a design by the architect Antonio da Ponte made in stone to replace one that previously existed in wood that was destroyed in a fire.

The main feature of this bridge is that it seems to break from the architectural tradition of building Roman-style bridges based on medium-height arches towards a new type of lower arch constructions.

However, its five hundred years of history are taking their toll and, like so many other monuments in Venice, it is suffering from serious degradation – especially on its columns.

Numerous little shops and market stalls can be found near the bridge.

Picture: Rüdiger Wölk

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