The Danube’s banks in Bratislava were connected by bridges over the centuries. The first pontoon bridge was built around 1450 and lasted three centuries. One pendulum (compass-like) bridge was built for Bratislava in 1770 by inventor Wolfgang Kempelen. Bridges were built for coronational events. With the only bridge outlasting a coronation being the 1825 boat bridge located in today’s Ľudovít Štúr Square. It comprised 23 boats with a road surface of wide flat slabs. The boats could be disconnected to allow the passage of boats along the river, and were totally removed in winter to prevent ice damage.

This bridge was replaced by a railway bridge in 1890-1891 named after Austrian emperor. King Francis Joseph I of Hungary, who attended the ribbon cutting event. This first solid bridge had to last Petržalka exactly eighty years.

Original source in Slovak language:

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