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The Grim History of the Bridge of Sighs in Venice

Who would have thought that this iconic Venetian bridge had such a rich, yet tragic history?

The Bridge of Sighs is known to some as the Ponte sei Sospiri, and it’s one of the most famous bridges in Venice. The beautiful bridge sits atop the Rio di Palazzo canal in Venice, and is made with intricately carved white limestone with tiny latticed windows.

It was built in 1600 to connect the Doge’s Palace to the newly established prison at the time called the Prigioni Nuove.

The Bridge of Sighs is a famous landmark in Venice…

But its history is not as pleasant.

You might be wondering why this famous bridge is called the Bridge of Sighs, and the reason behind that is actually quite tragic. The bridge was used to lead prisoners from the interrogations rooms located at the Doge’s Palace to their cells in the Prigioni Nuove.

Back in the 1600s when the bridge was built, it’s said that convicted prisoners would walk across the bridge to catch a brief glimpse of the outside world through the tiny windows before they served their sentences or await their execution.

Hence, the bridge is called the “Bridge of Sighs”.

However, this may just be a romanticized version of the story, as most of the prisoners house in the Prigione Nuove by the time the bridge was build were actually just small-time criminals waiting to serve shorter sentences. In addition, it may have been quite hard to look out from the bridge onto the outside world as the tiny windows would have been hard to see out of. Quite a sad sight to be their last of the outside world.

This would be a prisoner's view from inside the bridge.

Here's what the view would be like from atop the bridge.

Source: Geoff/Flickr

Today, the Bridge of Sighs is associated with a different, more uplifting legend. Since Venice is a romantic city, a new legend formed around the bridge. It is said that if lovers kiss on a gondola at sunset while passing beneath the Bridge of Sighs, they will be blessed with eternal love.

Legend says, lovers who kiss on a gondola under the bridge are granted eternal love.

And since Venice is known as one of the world’s most romantic cities, it’s a lot nicer to associate a kiss of eternal love with one of its most famous sights.

Travel

Unsuspecting Tourists Flock to Rosignano Solvay’s Magnificent White Toxic Waste Beaches

Beach-goers become victims to tumors and high mortality rates because of this dark secret.

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Rosignano Solvay is a tourist haven. This southern Tuscany area boasts of brilliant white sand beaches that attract thousands of visitors every year. Little do they know the glorious white sand they frolic on is solely composed of toxic waste.

Not what it seems.

Source: Ylv/Flickr

This picturesque Italian town’s main tourist attraction is its seemingly beautiful coastline of sparkling sand locals call Spiagge Bianche.

However, the stunning stretch of beach isn’t a wonder of nature at all.

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History

B****d in Sands: The Ancient Roman City of Timgad Reveals Remarkable Modern Grid Design

This city ruins is one of the best surviving examples of the grid plan used by the ancient Roman city planners.

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In 1765, when Scottish explorer James Bruce discovered an ancient city partly buried in the sands of the Algerian desert. He did not realize that he was actually standing above the ruins of the largest Roman Empire settlement ever built in North Africa — the ancient city of Thamugadi, now called Timgad.

The ruins of Timgad offer us a glimpse of ancient Roman urban planning at its height with its precise design and modern grid plan. Located on the slopes of Aures Massif in what is now known as Algeria, it was built nearly 2,000 years ago by the Roman Emperor Trajan.

The city was originally designed as a perfect square, 355 meters long on each side. The angled design was highlighted by the decumanus maximus (east-west oriented street) and the cardo (north-south-oriented street) lined by a Corinthian colonnade.

The city’s original design was a perfect square, 355 meters long on each side.

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Travel

Live Like a Royal Everyday, These Castles are For Sale

Whoever said you can’t be royalty was dead wrong. Just buy any of these castles and be king everyday.

Unless you happen to be one of the chosen few to be dating royalty, chances are, you happen to be just like everyone else – a commoner. But just because you’re not married to the next heir to the throne doesn’t mean that you no longer have the chance to live like one. Of course you still can!

It’s actually easier and hassle-free than getting hitched. The shortcut? Purchase any of the castles below and viola! You can now experience the same luxury living kings, queens, princes and princesses do.

1. Dracula’s Castle, Transylvania

Bran Castle, more popularly known as Dracula’s Castle, in Romania is up for grabs. This is the castle that helped inspire Bram Stoker’s best-selling novel, Dracula. In case you wanna know, Prince Vlad the Impaler did live here for a time. ...

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