Severan Bridge

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Severan Bridge
Ponte romano.jpg
Severan Bridge with the columns of Roman Emperor Lucius Septimius Severus and his second wife Julia Domna seen from the south.
Official name Cendere Köprüsü
Carries Road traffic and pedestrians
Crosses Chabinas Creek (Cendere Çayı)
Locale Between Kahta and Sincik in Adıyaman Province, Turkey
Design Simple, unadorned, single majestic arch
Total length 120 m (390 ft)
Width 7 m (23 ft)
Longest span 34.2 m (112 ft)
Construction end Early 3rd century
Coordinates 37°55′56.64″N 38°36′29.52″E / 37.9324000°N 38.6082000°E / 37.9324000; 38.6082000Coordinates: 37°55′56.64″N 38°36′29.52″E / 37.9324000°N 38.6082000°E / 37.9324000; 38.6082000
Severan Bridge is located in Turkey
Severan Bridge
Severan Bridge
Location of Severan Bridge in Turkey

The Severan Bridge (Chabinas Bridge or Cendere Bridge, Turkish: Cendere Köprüsü), located near the ancient city Arsameia (today Eskikale), 55 km (34 mi) north east of Adıyaman in southeastern Turkey, is a Roman bridge. It spans Cendere Çayı (Chabinas Creek), a tributary of Kâhta Creek on the provincial road 02-03 from Kâhta to Sincik in Adıyaman Province.

The bridge is constructed of 92 stones, each weighing about 10 tons as a simple, unadorned, single majestic arch on two rocks at the narrowest point of the creek. At 34.2 m (112 ft) clear span, the structure is quite possibly the second largest extant arch bridge by the Romans. It is 120 m (390 ft) long and 7 m (23 ft) wide.

Roadway flanked by ancient columns

The bridge was built by four Commagenean cities in honor of the Roman Emperor Lucius Septimius Severus (193–211), his second wife Julia Domna and their sons Lucius Septimius Bassianus Caracalla and Publius Septimius Antoninius Geta as emanating from an inscription in Latin on the bridge. The Legio XVI Gallica, garrisoned in the ancient city of Samosata (today Samsat) to begin a war with Parthia constructed the bridge. There were originally four Corinthian columns on the bridge, two columns on the Kâhta side dedicated to Septimius Severus himself and his wife, and two another columns on the Sincik side dedicated to Caracalla and Geta, all in 9–10 m in height. But the column of Geta was removed following his assassination by Caracalla, who damned his memory and ordered his name to be removed from all inscriptions.

The Severan Bridge is situated within one of the most important national parks in Turkey, which contains Nemrut Dağı with the famous remains of Commagene civilization on top, declared as World Cultural Heritage site by UNESCO. In 1997, the bridge was restored. Vehicles up to 5 tons only were allowed to pass over the bridge. The bridge is now closed to vehicles, and a new road bridge has been built 500 m (550 yd) east of the old bridge.

Further reading[edit]

  • O’Connor, Colin (1993), Roman Bridges, Cambridge University Press, pp. 127–129 (E36), ISBN 0-521-39326-4 
  • Galliazzo, Vittorio (1994), I ponti romani. Catalogo generale, Vol. 2, Treviso: Edizioni Canova, pp. 390–394 (No. 824), ISBN 88-85066-66-6 

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

Media related to Severan Bridge at Wikimedia Commons