Bridges carrying the burden of love across Europe

Padlocks of various shapes and colors on Hohenzollern Bridge, Cologne.

IT’S a curious trend – the hanging of “love” locks on bridges.

The tradition started in Rome many years ago, when hundreds of romantic couples wrote their names and romantic wishes on padlocks, hung them on the Ponte Milivio Bridge, and threw the keys into Tiber River.

Since then people have hung all kinds of locks, from cheap with signatures etched in correction pen or a marker, to custom made locks with engraved messages on them, and attached them to these so-called “bridges of love”.

Whether it is an attempt to show the strength of your affection by declaring your love to the world, or simply to decorate the dull and gloomy architecture of bridges worldwide, but you can find these symbols of urban communal art in many European cities.

Dmitry Dmitriev of looks at this phenomenon and offers a list of bridges carrying the largest amount of love-laced metal.

Thousands of padlocks on Hohenzollern Bridge, Cologne.

Golden locks near the Flagey Square and the Ixelles Ponds, Brussels.

The Bridge of Love crossing the Seine, Paris.

In a variation on the theme, padlocks hang on artificial trees in Moscow.

The Bridge of Love in Mariinskiy Park, Kiev.

The Bridge of Love in Odessa: “Until rust parts us”.

Ironically, the Ponte Milivio Bridge that originated this tradition may be the first to have the padlocks removed from it, since Rome authorities have indicated an intention in that.

Maybe the increasing number of locks has triggered this decision, as throughout years the bridge has accumulated thousands of love padlocks on its handrails – completely obscuring the bridge structure itself.

The trend-setter: Ponte Milivio Bridge in Rome.

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