Ancient bridges in Ascoli Piceno: The Ponte di Cecco bridge
The Ponte di Cecco, set in an area just outside the historic center of Ascoli Piceno in the Porta Maggiore area, was built in the 1st century BC., where the banks of the Castellano river have firm and close buttresses.
It was the first brick bridge in the city that joined the ancient consular road “Salaria” to “Castrum Truentinum” on the Adriatic coast. The presence of an “arce” highlighted the bridge’s strategic importance.
According to a medieval legend, the bridge was made in one night by the poet and astrologer Cecco d’Ascoli.
In reality, the bridge is due to Mastro Cecco Aprutino, who in 1349 requalified and connected it to the Malatesta Fort and the “Citadel” that Galeotto Malatesta elected as his official residence.
Made of large ashlar blocks of travertine, the Ponte di Cecco is 43 meters long and 4.5 meters wide; it has two asymmetrical arches: the larger one is 14 and a half meters high, exactly double than the smaller one.
Today’s bridge look is the result of a philological rebuilding done in 1960 after the destruction suffered in 1944 by the Wehrmacht.
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AUTHOR: Prof. Giorgio Giorgi, art historian