First European truss cantilever bridge in the light of numismatics, iconography and written sources
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The paper describes a bridge over the Vistula River with two spans of 180 English feet (54.86 metres) in length, constructed in the middle of the 17th century in the city of Torun on the territory of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. A study on numismatic and iconographic sources as well as city plans and written sources is carried out in the article. The study shows that the Torun Bridge superstructure was made of wood and was based on a cantilever truss (Gerber carrier) solution which had never been applied in Europe before. The two large spans of Torun Bridge were in service between 1632 and 1657. Accord- ing to the author’s research on well-known bridge structures from Europe from the middle of the 17th century, the span of the Torun bridge appears to have been the larger than the other.