INTRODUCTION     

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"The best professors are those which know how to transform themselves into bridges, and which invite their pupils to cross them..."     NIKOS KAZANTZAKIS.

In its first definition, a bridge is a structure intended to allow communication by connecting two points separated by an obstacle. From the first wooden or stone bridges and the primitive footbridges made of lianas, to the latest technological marvels of the end of the 20th century, a large variety of materials has been used in order to achieve solidity, efficacy, practicality, rapidity and cost efficiency. Stone, iron, steel and concrete have been used in increasingly sophisticated architectural structures. Built initially to satisfy commercial, strategic and economic needs, bridges have also been designed for tourist purposes and sometimes even for aestheticism. Often destroyed, rebuilt, re-destroyed, and rebuilt again... bridges have marked history and human relations, becoming a privileged subject for representation in the history of Art, providing themes for many stories, films, novels, and even songs. They have also been the centerpiece of many architectural competitions. It is as difficult to classify the representations of bridges in philately as it is to categorize the bridges themselves. Whether it be by their form, the nature of the materials used or even by their function, such as a highway-bridge, footbridge, viaduct, aqueduct… the exceptions are always numerous and make any attempt at classification even more difficult. HTML page-setting and the addition of links permit an instantaneous simplification of the tiresome references and endnotes in printed documents, although without ever completely replacing the latter. A bridge can be the only theme of a stamp - or a series of stamps - issued on a purely commemorative basis to highlight its technical and architectural qualities. It can also simply be an element of the landscape represented, urban or rural. In other cases, it plays the symbolic role that it fulfilled throughout the eventful history of mankind, a symbol associated with a city, an event, or even a character. More rarely, its aesthetic qualities or its use for artistic and expressive ends are highlighted. Following the completion of a European educational project carried out within the framework of my job –- I was a high school Art teacher near Orleans , now retired – I collected all the stamps and documents represented here. I then tried, by way of this website, which grows each week, to make a small anthology of these buildings through their representations in philately, a field symbolic of the cultural and universal "bridges" that try to connect and unite people. This site is not an exhaustive encyclopedia, but rather a bridge towards knowledge, curiosity and culture…

                                                               Michel Wagner  June 2004/2009

 

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Men are building too many walls, not enough bridges  ..." Isaac Newton.
 Postcard, photo : W. Cohnen. Editions Frazer SA- CH
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All the documents, stamps, photos and letters reproduced in these pages, when they are not in inverted commas( feature articles)... are from my personal collection; Any use or reproduction, even partial, requires my authorization ... Michel Wagner
All The documents, stamps, photos, letters reproduced in these pages, apart from those whose origin is mentioned ... are an integral part of my personal collection.
"All Rights Reserved for rights holders unidentified"

© 2004-2016 "Les ponts et leurs représentations en philatélie."