Bridges serve a practical purpose, providing passage over rivers, valleys, roads, railroad tracks, and other obstacles to transportation. But many bridges are also works of art. This splendid archive by an expert on the history of bridges and civil engineering amply illustrates the art of good bridge design, as exemplified by ancient and modern constructions. Wilbur J. Watson's study ranges far and wide, and his text — accompanied by 200 rare photographs and illustrations — contains vivid descriptions of many of the Old and New World's finest bridges, as well as historical data, and considerable literary and legendary lore.Bridges of all purposes and sizes are considered—from stone viaducts in Roman Iberia and Chinese masonry arches of the Han dynasty to the pontoon spans of Asia Minor and the modern steel and concrete suspension bridges in Geneva, Switzerland, and in New York. Here also are views of the Old London Bridge (1209), the Karlsbrücke in Prague, the imposing 14th-century Valentré bridge in Cahors, France, and scores more.A fact-filled pictorial guide, this volume will be welcomed by students of engineering and architecture, and anyone who has ever marveled at the size and grandeur of a well-built bridge.
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