Did the london bridge really fall down?
London bridge is falling down
London Bridge is Falling down
My fair lady
Historical facts would be helpful
- RichBLv 71 decade agoFavorite Answer
There have been many different London Bridges on the same site over the past 2,000 years, which have indeed been knocked down, or fallen down, or destroyed in various ways, and the nursery rhyme alludes to this.
The Romans built a few different bridges during their reign (including, ultimately, a stone bridge), but this fell into disrepair after the Romans left.
During much of the Saxon era there was no need for a bridge crossing at this point as the river formed a political boundary between two hostile kingdoms. By all accounts the bridge was not reconstructed until sometime around 1000 AD, and this one was destroyed by Olaf II of Norway. A later Norman bridge was destroyed in a tornado in 1091, and its successor was at least partially destroyed by fire in 1136; some rebuilding work was carried out after that.
The most famous and long-lived bridge on the site was the stone medieval bridge completed in 1209 during King John's reign. The King allowed shops and houses to be built on either side of the bridge, up to seven stories high, as a means of deriving revenue for the maintenance of the bridge. The bridge became very crowded due to this, and it meant that the bridge could take up to an hour to cross at busy times. Several disasters including fires and arch collapses befell the bridge, but it ultimately survived until 1831, when a new bridge designed by John Rennie opened alongside it and the old bridge was demolished.
In 1924 it was realised that the lifespan of the bridge was limited (it was sinking!) and it would eventually have to be replaced. In 1967 the City of London Council came up with the idea of putting the old bridge up for sale; the American entrepreneur Robert P. McCulloch bought it for $2,460,000 with the intention of reconstructing it in Arizona. The bridge that now spans the Bridgewater Channel canal at Lake Havasu is not entirely the original structure - it consists of a concrete frame with cladding stones taken from the original bridge. The remaining stones were stored in a quarry in Devon and some of these were auctioned online in 2003.
There is an urban legend that McCulloch actually thought he was buying the much grander Tower Bridge, which some people mistakenly think of as London Bridge, but he has denied this in interviews.
A new London Bridge opened in 1973, and this bridge still stands today, carrying commuters across the river in the same spot that the Romans built their first wooden bridge nearly 2,000 years ago.
- ManxbikerLv 71 decade ago
The meaning of the rhyme is not certain. Most likely, it relates to the many difficulties experienced in bridging the River Thames: London's earlier bridges did indeed "wash away" before a bridge built of "stone so strong" was constructed. A plausible reference of the fair lady was to Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine. However, the rhyme is not confined to the UK and variants exist in many other western and central European countries.
One theory of origin is that the rhyme relates to the destruction of London Bridge by Olaf II of Norway in 1014 (alternatively cited as 1009). Reportedly Olaf I of Norway also burned the bridge during raids in England during the 980s, the bridge was also destroyed by a tornado in 1091 and burned in 1136. The rhyme is said to derive from a Old Norse original by Óttarr svarti, quoted in Heimskringla. The Online Medieval & Classical Library gives this translation for the section 12. The Sixth Battle of Saga of Olaf Haraldson: Part I in Heimskringla:
London Bridge is broken down. —
Gold is won, and bright renown.
Hild is shouting in the din!
Mail-coats ringing —
Odin makes our Olaf win!
However, the original Norse text given on Wikisource is very different. It lists this section as section 13, not 12, titled Orusta hin sétta ('His sixth battle'), of Ólafs saga helga ('Saga of Saint Ólaf') in Heimskringla. It gives the equivalent passage of text as:
Enn braustu, éla kennir,
Yggs veðrþorinn, bryggjur,
linns hefir lönd að vinna,
Lundúna, þér snúnað.
Höfðu hart um krafðir,
hildr óx við það, skildir
gang, en gamlir sprungu,
- Anonymous5 years ago
complicated factor try searching on the search engines this can help
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- Vinegar TasterLv 71 decade ago
I think they moved it to Arizona...really.Look it up...
- Jack KerouacLv 61 decade ago
no but it is in arizona now