Monday, March 28, 2011

Bridge of Sighs -- Cambridge

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

The Bridge of Sighs in Cambridge belongs to St. John's College, but is now a public thoroughfare. Designed by Henry Hutchison, it was built in 1831 as a second river crossing and to connect Third Court and New Court.

Beyond the fact that both are covered bridges, the style is completely different from the Italian original. Still, this bridge definitely evokes Venice, as students pole punts full of fellow-students or visitors at a leisurely pace along the River Cam. No doubt some romantic couples kiss beneath the bridge here too, for luck, just as they do in Venice.

The Grand Tour, which used to be a very important part of an upper class education, always included Italy. The cultures of Rome and later of Renaissance Italy have had profound impact on the culture of the UK, and in particular, on its two most venerable universities.

No comments:

Post a Comment