By Alan Cooper
From the time of Alfred the nice till past the top of the center a long time, bridges have been very important to the rulers and folks of britain, yet they have been pricey and tough to keep up. Who then used to be answerable for their maintenance? the reply to this question alterations over the centuries, and how within which it adjustments unearths a lot approximately legislation and tool in medieval England. the advance of legislations about the upkeep of bridges didn't stick to a simple line: felony principles constructed via the Anglo-Saxons, which had made the 1st age of bridge development attainable, have been rejected by means of the Normans, and royal legal professionals of the 13th and fourteenth centuries needed to locate new ideas to the matter. The destiny of recognized bridges, specifically London Bridge, indicates the way the religious, ancient and entrepreneurial mind's eye used to be pressed into provider to discover strategies; the destiny of humbler bridges indicates the urgency with which this challenge was once debated around the kingdom. by way of targeting this element of sensible governance and tracing it during the process the center a long time, a lot is proven in regards to the boundaries of royal strength and the creativity of the medieval criminal brain. ALAN COOPER is Assistant Professor of historical past at Colgate collage.