Pont Neuf (“New Bridge”)

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1st arrondissement of Paris – Quai de la Mégisserie – Quai des Grands Augustins – 75001 Paris

  • Despite its name, the Pont Neuf (New Bridge) is the oldest standing stone bridge in Paris.
  • It consists of 2 spans, separated by solid ground and the equestrian statue of Henri IV.
  • This bridge had many innovations: stones instead of wood, no houses and there were sidewalks.
  • The first stone was laid by Henri III.
  • Due to religious and political unrests, the construction of the Bridge was suspended during 10 years.
  • The construction was resumed in 1599 under the reign of Henri IV.
  • The bridge was opened to traffic in 1604 and was inaugurated by Henri IV in 1607.
  • The equestrian statue of Henri IV, was the first effigy to be placed on a public thoroughfare.
  • Henri IV never had the chance to see his equestrian statue since it was erected 4 years after his assassination.
  • Henri IV built a hydraulic water pump located on the bridge to supply the Louvre with water, which got the name Samaritaine. The water pump does not longer exist.

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