pont ambrix

The Pont Ambreux, also known as the Ambrusam Bridge, was a major Roman bridge across the Vidaurelle river connecting the end of Villetel to Gallaghers-le-Monteux in modern-day Lunelle, France. The bridge was part of the Via Domitia, the first Roman road built in Gaul to connect Italy and Hispania via Gallia Narbonensis, in what is now southern France.

The Pont Embriques was built in the 1st century BC and originally consisted of 11 arches. The bridge carried traffic west of Nmes continuously for 13 centuries, until a violent flood put the bridge out of use. It was never repaired.

visual: Dominic Lenore / Flickr

The Vidourle River is prone to flooding, known locally as the Vidourleds, and the bridge with its tributary arches has been carried piece by piece over the centuries. A sketch of the bridge by Anne Rulman in 1620 shows four arches. A lithograph from 1839 and a painting by Gustave Courbet in 1857 show the two arches. The floods of 1933 confined the bridge to its final arch that we see today.

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visual: Steve Shupe / Flickr

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The Pont Embriques at Vidorle, drawn by Ann Rulman 1620.

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Pont Embriques on Vidorle, printed by Thierry Frres, 1839.

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“Le Pont d’Ambrussum” by Gustave Courbet, 1857.

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