Siosepol or Siose Bridge (which means 33 Bridge or the Bridge of 33 Arches), also called the Allah-Verdi Khan Bridge, is one of the eleven bridges of Isfahan, Iran.
This is probably the most famous of Isfahan's bridges.The bridge connects central Chahar Bagh to the lower part of Chahar Bagh Avenue.
It is made up of a series of 33 arches and Commissioned in 1602 by Shah Abbas I from his chancellor Allahverdi Khan Undiladze, an Iranian ethnic Georgian, it consists of two rows of 33 arches.The name - Si-o-Seh Pol is derived from the Farsi for 33 (Si-o-Seh).
There is a larger base plank at the start of the bridge where the Zayandeh River flows under it, supporting a tea house. It is highly ranked as being one of the most famous examples of Safavid bridge design. The bridge is built on a series of pontoons of great width and there is a famous tea-house amongst them which is accessible from the southern bank.
The bridge was originally known as the Bridge of Allahverdi Khan who was the general responsible for its construction. The lower level of 33 arches is surmounted by a second layer, with one arch above each of the pontoons and two arches above the lower single arch, giving it its
name and rhythmic appearance. The road along the top is sandwiched between high walls which give some shelter from the wind as well as protection for travellers who can walk along the footpaths on either side to avoid the crush of the traffic. Originally there were frescoes on the walls which Sir William Ousely, who saw them in 1823, felt to be dangerous for the morals of passers by!
The bridge itself is 295m long and 13.75m wide. The thirty four piers on which it is constructed are 3.49m thick and the arches are 5.57m wide. The southern side of the bridge, where the waters of the Zayandeh run more swiftly has supplementary arches, and it is this that makles them suitable as a tea house. The bridge acted as a springboard for the development of the Khajou Bridge some 50 years later.
Allah Verdi Khan’s life is very interesting. He was born as a Christian in Georgia and he was sold as a Christian slave. He was sent to Iran. His life was painful and miserable. He was lucky enough to be sold as a slave to Shah Tahmasb Safavid court. He was a competent man who promoted fast. At the time of Shah Abbas the great he was appointed as the governor of Fars district which covered most of southern provinces Shah Abbas the great fully trusted him and was highly promoted as commander in chief. Therefore this important bridge was named after Allah Verdi Khan. He was given a Moslem Turkish name Allah “God” Verdi “given”. The builder of this strong fantastic bridge was Ostad Hossein Banna.
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