The house and the river: a dialogue that started many centuries ago


The Casa dei Turchi on the Forbato bridge has always intrigued the people of Rovereto and most likely those who travelled on the imperial road going south. The Forbato ?bridge has been for centuries the only bridge over the Leno accessible ?to vehicles on the left bank of the river Adige. And it is the only ?one that today connects the 17th c. Santa Maria quarter to? the 15th-16th c. Venetian quarter. 

?The above mentioned map from 1775 shows also the S. Tomaso? church, which is just beside the Forbato bridge. Also the small S. Barbara? church and cemetry is indicated and the "Panari" stream. The S. Osvaldo church is not ?indicated as it was built at a later date.

?It is likely the bridge was built already in the Roman time, and called "pons foris ab ante”- bridge of the front door, where "the front ?door" stands for the door of the city. This later became the Forbato ?bridge.? The most ancient documents that show the existence of a stone bridge ?over the river Leno are from the late Middle Ages. At that time, the bridge was called Forbato. At the beginning of the 1700s the bridge was extended ?with a new arch beside the already existing one. 

In 1840 this name was abandoned when the bridge was built in the shape and location of today. In fact, it has had many names including: New Bridge, City Bridge, ?Bridge over the Leno, S. Maria Bridge. In the nineteen hundreds the ?latter was the most used. The most documented event about the bridge ?is the flood which partially destroyed it in 1797. The importance of ?the bridge forced Rovereto's Council to immediately build a provisory ?wooden one. This is shown in the above mentioned drawing of 1836. The ?bridge was re-built in stone in 1840.?

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