Lucerne – Chaff Bridge (Spreuerbrücke)

The town of Lucerne had three wooden covered bridges. While the Chapel Bridge (Kapellbrucke) takes all our attention, no one from the last two centuries has seen the third one: Hofbrücke Bridge, but there is still Spreuerbrücke Bridge. It is a little bit left out but it is the oldest covered bridge in Lucerne, nominated after the 1993 Chapel Bridge fire.

There were several mills in that part of town including one on the original bridge. Workers had to dispose of the grain residue and it was only from this bridge that the organic waste, the chaff, could be disposed, thus explaining its name.

Like the Chapel Bridge, this bridge is covered, does not have a direct trajectory, crosses the Reuss River from one bank to the other and has triangular images suspended throughout the transverse beams. Forty-five (45) paintings of the 17th century under the theme of «the macabre dance» (Totentanz) draw the attention of visitors. There were more in 1408 but the shortening of the bridge in 1785 reduced its number. There is no tower on this one but there is a tiny chapel.

The position of this bridge does not allow us to see both bridges at the same time except from the sky. The river meanders at a 90 degree shift that gives each of the bridges diverse views of the city.

For an overview of Lucerne click here.

For all posts on Lucerne click here.

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