Constantine's Bridge (Danube)

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Constantine's Bridge
Roman Gothic Walls Romania Plain.svg
Constantine's Bridge on the map
Coordinates43°45′49″N 24°27′25″E / 43.76361°N 24.45694°E / 43.76361; 24.45694
LocaleBetween Sucidava (present-day Corabia, Romania) and Oescus (modern Gigen, Bulgaria)
Total length2,437 m (7,995 ft)
Width5.7 m (19 ft)
Height10 m (33 ft)
Construction end0328
Opened5 July 328 AD[1]
Closedmid-4th century[2]

Constantine's Bridge (Bulgarian: Константинов мост, Konstantinov most; Romanian: Podul lui Constantin cel Mare) was a Roman bridge over the Danube used to reconquer Dacia. It was completed in 328 AD and remained in use for four decades.[3][4]

It was officially opened on 5 July 328 AD in the presence of emperor Constantine the Great.[1] With an overall length of 2,434 metres (7,986 ft), 1,137 metres (3,730 ft) of which spanned the Danube's riverbed,[5] Constantine's Bridge is considered the longest ancient river bridge and one of the longest of all time.[6]


It was a construction with masonry piers and wooden arch bridge and with wooden superstructure. It was constructed between Sucidava (present-day Corabia, Olt County, Romania) and Oescus (modern Gigen, Pleven Province, Bulgaria),[7][8] by Constantine the Great.[9] The bridge was apparently used until the mid-4th century,[2] the main reason for this assumption being that Valens had to cross the Danube using a bridge of boats at Constantiana Daphne during his campaign against the Goths in 367.[10]

While Luigi Ferdinando Marsigli attempted to locate the bridge in the 17th century and Alexandru Popovici [ro] and Cezar Bolliac continued this search in the 19th century, the first real scientific discoveries were performed by Grigore Tocilescu and Pamfil Polonic in 1902. In 1934 Dumitru Tudor published the first complete work regarding the bridge, and the last systematic approach on the north bank of the Danube was performed in 1968 by Octavian Toropu.[citation needed]

Technical data[edit]

The length of the bridge was 2,434 metres (7,986 ft) with a wooden deck with a width of 5.7 metres (19 ft) at 10 metres (33 ft) above the water.[4] The bridge had two abutment piers at each end, serving as gates for the bridge.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Madgearu 2013, p. 311.
  2. ^ a b "Corabia | County: Olt | Site: Sucidava - Celei | Excavation Year: 2003 - Archaeological Excavations in Romania". Retrieved 19 November 2016.
  3. ^ "NOTES". Retrieved 19 November 2016.
  4. ^ a b Gherghe, P.; Amon, L. (2007). Noi date în legătură cu podul lui Constantin cel Mare de la Sucidava [New data in connection with the bridge of Constantine the Great from Sucidava]. Pontica. Vol. 40. pp. 359–369.
  5. ^ Both figures from: Tudor 1974, p. 139; Galliazzo 1994, p. 319
  6. ^ Galliazzo 1994, p. 319
  7. ^ "CCA 2008".
  8. ^ "Pamfil Polonic' Manuscripts". (in Romanian). Retrieved 19 November 2016.
  9. ^ Janberg, Nicolas (ed.). "Constantine's Bridge at Celei (Celei/Ghigi, 328)". Structurae. Retrieved 19 November 2016.
  10. ^ Kulikowski, Michael (2007). Rome's Gothic Wars. Cambridge University Press. pp. 116–117. ISBN 978-0-521-84633-2.


  • Madgearu, Alexandru (2013). Operaţiuni militare la nord de Dunăre comandate de Constantin cel Mare, în Cruce şi misiune [Military operations north of the Danube ordered by Constantine the Great, cross and mission.] (in Romanian). Bucharest, Romania.
  • Galliazzo, Vittorio (1994), I ponti romani. Catalogo generale (in Italian), vol. 2, Treviso: Edizioni Canova, pp. 319f. (No. 645), ISBN 88-85066-66-6
  • Tudor, D. (1974), "Le pont de Constantin le Grand à Celei", Les ponts romains du Bas-Danube, Bibliotheca Historica Romaniae Études (in Romanian), vol. 51, Bucharest: Editura Academiei Republicii Socialiste România, pp. 135–166

External links[edit]