Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Bridges of Esfahan

I’ve already shown you a photo of one of the 17th century Safavid Dynasty bridges in Esfahan in the very first post about the elderly gentlemen gathering at Khaju Bridge. Here is another view of it. You'll remember that during our visit there was no water in the river because of irrigation needs on the outskirts.

Now here is something interesting in connection to the Houses of Strength. There are two statues of a lion with a man's head in his mouth at each end of Khaju Bridge. The man is clearly alive and is peering out of the mouth. The lions are decorated with some of the exercise equipment the athletes use in the zurkhaneh: the clubs are on the lions' front legs, and the bow and the piece of wood representing a door are on the side.  I wish I could remember the whole story---I'll see if I can find out and report. Riding the lion is a favorite thing to do with kids of all ages.

Here are a couple of additional bridges:

Si-o-Seh Bridge or Bridge of 33 Arches from the Safavid Dynasty.
Shahrestan Bridge is the oldest bridge in town, dating from the 12th century though its underpinnings are from the Sassanian Dynasty in the 3rd century.

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