Pont sur la Laye

Pont sur la Laye

Pont sur la Laye
Coordinates 43°55′48″N 5°45′23″E / 43.93°N 5.756389°E / 43.93; 5.756389Coordinates: 43°55′48″N 5°45′23″E / 43.93°N 5.756389°E / 43.93; 5.756389
Locale Mane, Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, France
Design Segmental arch bridge
Material Stone
Total length 40 m
Width 3.2 m
Longest span 11.40 m
Number of spans 3
Construction end Roman or Romanesque period
Pont sur la Laye
Location in France

The Pont sur la Laye or Pont roman de Mane (English: Romanesque Bridge of Mane) is an old stone arch bridge across the stream Laye in the French Provence close to the town Mane.


The 40 m long and 3.2 m wide bridge features three segmental arches with a span to rise ratio of up to c. 3:1.[1] Its spans are 2.80 m, 7.90 m and 11.40;[2] the thickness of the two larger arch ribs is between one and two Roman feet,[3] making the structure one of the few Roman bridges whose ratio for rib thickness to span is lower than the commonly applied ancient standard of 1:20.[3]

The bridge was built of local limestone whose shape varies according to its function: the arches consist of voussoirs, the spandrel walls of irregular stonework.[4] The main pier is protected both upstream and downstream by large triangular cutwaters out of rectangular blocks of stone.[4] The paved roadway rises sharply from the left bank to the main arch, and then drops in a gentler gradient to the higher bank on the other side.[4] The parapet, which has been reported as partly removed by O’Connor in 1993, has been apparently repaired in the meantime.[2]


According to the Italian bridge builder Gazzola, the Pont sur la Laye dates from the end of the 1st or beginning of the 2nd century AD,[4] thus belonging to a round dozen known Roman segmental arch bridges.[1] Structurae, though, ascribes an early Romanesque origin to the structure (11th century).[2] Following the Mane homepage, the two side arches, along with their breakwaters, were added as late as the 17th century,[5] which means that the segmental arches are of a relatively late date.



See also

Media related to Pont sur la Laye at Wikimedia Commons

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