Photographer's Note

The Mathematical Bridge is the popular name of a wooden footbridge in the southwest of central Cambridge, United Kingdom. This is due to it's sophisticated design

It bridges the River Cam about one hundred feet northwest of Silver Street Bridge and connects two parts of Queens' College. Its official name is simply the Wooden Bridge

The bridge was designed in 1748 by William Etheridge (1709–76), and was built in 1749 by James Essex the Younger (1722–84). It has subsequently been repaired in 1866 and rebuilt to the same design in 1905.

The red-brick building seen on the right is the President’s Lodge (ca. 1460), the oldest building on the river at Cambridge.

For those who have fallen prey to the baseless stories told by unscrupulous guides to gullible tourists, one should point out that Isaac Newton died in 1727, and therefore was unlikely to have had anything to do with this bridge.

Other baseless stories are that Etheridge had been a student or a Fellow, and/or had visited China, or that the bridge is of chinese design. Anyone who believes that students or Fellows could have dismantled the bridge (and then failed to re-assemble it, as the myth runs) cannot have a serious grasp on reality, given the size and weight of the wooden members of the bridge. The joints of the present bridge are fastened by coach-bolts and nuts.

Earlier versions of the bridge used iron pins or coach-screws at the joints, driven in from the outer elevation. Only a pedant could claim that the bridge was originally built without nails.

The bridge is 50 feet 8 inches (15·44 metres) long. The angle between two adjacent radials (except the ones on the abutments) is one 32nd of a revolution. The arch is composed of tangents to a circle of radius 32 feet

Well, this is the upright version of a bridge not tilted ^_^


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Additional Photos by Ralf Lai (kim_gwan) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 99 W: 0 N: 368] (1142)
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