Bishop's bridge

In the old part of Veliko Tarnovo, in Dolna mahala where Yantra passes between the hills Tsarevets and Trapezitsa the bishop’s bridge connects the two banks of the river, as in the old times, and unites the valuable cultural monuments in the region. It was built during 1856 in the place of an old medieval bridge from the time of the brothers Asen and Peter. The road from the main entrance of Tsarevets passed through it and proceeded to Asenova mahala and the other bank of Yantra to Trapezitsa and Arbanassi.
Nearby, in “St. Dimitar” church in 1185 was proclaimed the rebellion of the brothers Asen and Peter against the Byzantine oppressors. Using this bridge our rebellion ancestors entered Tirnovgrad  and proclaimed it a capital of the newly freed country. Many times the old bridge was shaken by the clatter of the handsome riders ready to reflect attacks from North.
During the Renaissance and the years after the Liberation, the bishop’s bridge was used as a connection between Tirnovo and the regions North from the Balkan mountain. Around the bridge many tanner’s workshops offered masterfully processed furs not only to the people of Tirnovo but to other towns near and far away in other countries.
By the two sides of the bridge there are many medieval cultural monuments, including objects from the time of the Second Bulgarian Kingdom and the early Renaissance. By it’s eastern side at the foot of Tsarevets are situated the church “Forty holly mortars” from 1230 , the church “St. St. Peter and Paul”, in which there are well preserved wall-paintings from 13 century, Shishmanovata banya and many  Renaissance houses. By the western side of the bridge are situated the churches “St. George” from 1616 and “St. Dimitar Solunski” from 1185 which was mentioned above. Near the western side is discovered the basement of a quadrangular fighting tower – confirmation for the role of the bishop’s bridge as an important transport and defensive equipment for the ancient Tirnovgrad.
As the oldest existing bridge in the region of Veliko Tirnovo, the bishop’s bridge is one of the greatest examples for the strength of our cultural background, the connection between us and our ancestors and also a wonderful place for pleasant and exciting walk.

Public Library “Petko Rachev Slaveikov”