An aqueduct, and then some – Past Squares 13

More Roman stuff….Many years ago, well probably about 50, my father told me about this amazing bridge with no railings high above a valley. And being the adventurous child that I was, I wanted to go.

Fast forward to 1982, and I took a short break before my finals, and joined my parents in Provence where they were touring in a caravan. The first evening my father drove us along the banks of the Gard to Remoulins….and there it was, towering 200ft above the river….the Pont du Gard.

The jolly old PDG is not, of course, just a bridge but a Roman aqueduct, and quite some structure. It was built in the first century A.D. to carry water 30 miles from the Gard to the Roman colony of Nemausus (Nîmes).
When I was there a couple of times in the 1980s, you could drive across the bottom level, and also scramble about on the hillside around and actually access the top of the aqueduct and walk (or in my case crawl) across the top all those feet above the Gard below, a fabulous experience. You could even get into the water course below the top level of the aqueduct Sadly, none of this can now be experienced, as owing to the number of tourists a rather necessary restriction to protect such an old monument.

Making this into a square rather ruins the majesty of this edifice, so first of all we will have it in all its rectangular splendour:

And now you can have a square, and another image seen in the evening light 40 years ago – best time of day to see it:

Pont du Gard, evening light

Linked to PastSquares at Becky’s here

37 comments

  1. Nice to share a few memories, Sue. I’ve not seen this one in real life but aqueducts always amaze me.

  2. stunning captures, and so glad you went rectangular first. How amazing you could explore it properly at the time

  3. I loved going there and being in awe. Also found an old old Olive tree too. Thanks for bring a memory up Sue 🙂 🙂

  4. Who cannot be impressed by skill and creative imagination of the Romans…… have we really progressed 🙂

  5. One more destination for my bucket list, thanks for the history lesson and tip about the best time to get the shot

  6. I have always been in awe of aqueducts and their builders but I’ve never seen this one. You were lucky to be able to get so close to it in ’82. So pleased you showed the rectangular version, squares are OK but only if they can encompass the whole vista.

    • Sue

      I was certainly very fortunate back in the ‘80s- fabulous experiences. As to photo formats, there ar only some compositions that work well as squares. 😊

  7. Oh, *sigh*, you’re really dragging me down memory lane!

    • Sue

      When did you see it?

      • In the 1970s. My hometown’s twinned town is in the Provence and I spent every summer vacation from age 13 to 18 there. And the family I was staying with had a fixed programme every summer: Roussillon, Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, Avignon Palais des papes, Gordes, Isles-sur-la-Sorgue, and Pont du Gard, a programme dictated by what they considered must-see and visiting relations.

      • Sue

        Oh, fantastic! And I have visited all those places you mention, and plenty more…thanks for jolting my memory!

      • And I need to add Fontaine-de-Vaucluse, for the list to be complete.

      • Sue

        Aaaah, Fontaine de Vaucluse! I have a very vivid memory of the road in

  8. I saw this in the mid-seventies and remember being so impressed. Thanks for the memory.

  9. I only ever saw this from a distance, in a moving vehicle. It wasn’t my car, and I didn’t like to ask them to stop. I am sure we were on the way to Avignon, but I was only 16, and don’t remember the journey that well. I didn’t have a camera at the time, so would have had no record of it anyway.
    Best wishes, Pete.

  10. Somewhere I’ve always wanted to see – so impressive!

    • Sue

      Well worth a visit. When I went, you could roam around the place, but now there is a visitor centre, I don’t know how much you can see

      • Sounds like Stonehenge. When I was a kid you could wander among the stones at will but now you have to look from the Visitor Centre, unless you pay a large premium for a ‘special experience’ 😦

      • Sue

        Yep, I remember seeing and touching Stonehenge when I was about 7

  11. That’s a very nice memory, Sue, and yes, it does “read” better as a rectangle. 😉

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