Military Review

Military crossings: from Darius and Caesar to the present day

23

Pointing a pontoon-bridge crossing for transporting military equipment on Lake Komsomolskoye.


As you know, the main purpose of temporary bridges, erected in wartime, is to ensure that the troops overcome rivers, lakes and other obstacles on the way of their movement, maneuver, and evacuation.

In ancient times


One of the first such bridges in the world was described by the great historian Herodotus in his famous “Stories". Herodotus told the world how a temporary bridge was built across the Bosphorus. The Greek engineer Mandrocles, a native of the island of Samos, built a floating pontoon bridge on behalf of the Persian king Darius the First (552–485 BC). It connected the two shores of the Bosphorus at the narrowest point, where the width of the Bosphorus did not exceed 660 meters. Having crossed this bridge, the troops of Darius the First invaded Europe, pursuing the retreating Scythians.

Throwing a bridge across the multi-fish Bosporus, I dedicated
Hera picture this in memory of the bridge, Mandrocles.
The Samians gained fame, but only an honorable crown for myself,
Having accomplished the royal will, I pleased Darius.

- the inscription in the temple of Hera on Samos dedicated to those events.

The successor of Darius the First, Xerxes, having started a war against the Greek poleis, decided to organize the most ambitious temporary crossing of the Dardanelles at that time. The Persians were going to dock their ships fleet in such a way that a large army could cross them from one side of the strait to the other. However, nature intervened: the storm disrupted the plans of the all-powerful Achaemenid. Why Xerxes ordered to carve the sea, and the troops were forced to cross the strait in ships in the usual way.

The next impressive chapter in the history of military bridge building was opened by Gaius Julius Caesar. In 55 BC. e. Caesar, who was fighting the Gallic War at that time, ordered the construction of a wooden bridge over the Rhine River. Historians consider the most likely place for its construction to be a site 11 km below Bonn, where the river reaches 6 meters deep and 400 meters wide. The 400-meter wooden bridge across the Rhine was erected by Caesar's legionnaires in just ten days.

In the Middle Ages, the art of building military bridges in Europe fell into decay: fortress ditches were considered a very reliable obstacle for enemy troops, what can we say about wide and stormy rivers? Nevertheless, in modern times, the Dutch and the British began to actively master the practice of bridge building, and in the Peter's era, advanced technologies came to the Russian Empire.

In Russia


In Russia, the art of bridge building has reached unprecedented heights. The advantages of domestic bridge building were most clearly manifested during the years of the Great Patriotic War, when Soviet troops had to build temporary bridges and crossings over rivers and even straits in the shortest possible time in order to facilitate the tasks of moving troops.

In addition, as a result of hostilities, thousands of old road and railway bridges were destroyed, which required the Soviet leadership and the armed forces to quickly restore them. In total, during the years of the Great Patriotic War, only on the railways of the USSR and Eastern Europe, 2 large and medium bridges were restored, as well as 756 small bridges, and 13 large and medium bridges were built.

In 1943, German troops built a cable car across the Kerch Strait, through which up to a thousand tons of cargo per day was passed. When the Red Army liberated the Kerch Peninsula, the road began to be used in the interests of the Soviet troops, and then in 1944 the Soviet military built a temporary railway bridge across the Kerch Strait, its total length was more than 4,4 km. It was one of the most outstanding examples of Soviet bridge construction during the Great Patriotic War. Unfortunately, the bridge was destroyed in an accident with an icebreaker crashing into its supports.

Despite the development of air transport, the armed forces of Russia and other countries of the world today devote much attention to the operational construction of bridges. As soon as civilian bridges are destroyed, the military comes to the rescue: it is enough to recall the recent construction by the military of a temporary bridge near the village of Novolitovsk in Primorye. It was built by the efforts of the servicemen of the bridge battalion of the logistics brigade of the Eastern Military District.
Author:
Photos used:
Twitter / Russian Ministry of Defense
23 comments
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  1. SaLaR
    SaLaR 10 December 2020 18: 07
    +2
    Ferry crossing ... Left bank, right bank ........ drinks
    1. Machito
      Machito 10 December 2020 19: 22
      +4
      Rough ice, ice edge. To whom the memory, to whom the Glory, to whom the dark water
      .
  2. Proton
    Proton 10 December 2020 18: 09
    +9
    And it's all?
    I would like to read more serious articles.
    1. t-12
      t-12 10 December 2020 19: 50
      +3
      The Chinese are more serious. Here is the crossing over the Yangtze.


      However, ours also know how. Although the rivulet is too small.


      And here's the story. Americans, 1918.
      1. kamakama
        kamakama 10 December 2020 22: 25
        +3
        And what about the Chinese? MLZH-VT and NZHM-56 are for ZHDV ogogo. Nominally 400 meters wide, construction time is XNUMX hours
        1. t-12
          t-12 10 December 2020 22: 57
          +3
          There was a day, and the Chinese assembled the bridge in 26 minutes.
          1. kamakama
            kamakama 11 December 2020 10: 39
            +4
            26 minutes for what? for the docking of pontoons? - I believe it is quite possible. Or for the preparation of assembly sites, delivery and unloading, assembly of pontoons and their convergence on the axis of the bridge. According to the standards of the Railway Department of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, a day is counted from the moment the order was issued for the construction of the crossing. In half an hour, neither we, nor the Chinese, can even launch all the pontoons into the water.
            And this, according to our standards, it is also necessary to equip the coastline for year-round use, including a drop during floods, and this is piling and other fun and not fast work. The Chinese did not bother with this, in principle, a bridge for one day.
            https://youtu.be/q_Rl7wJVhEc - вот, отрывок из новостей про учения с МЛЖ-ВТ. Можно оценить различия. Кстати, визуально китайский мост - копия старого ПМП НЖМ-56, только без рельс
  3. polpot
    polpot 10 December 2020 18: 11
    +7
    It will not be enough, the topic is interesting.
  4. Blacksmith 55
    Blacksmith 55 10 December 2020 18: 22
    +4
    Memory, memory.
    Where was the bridge built under the river level during the Second World War?
    The Germans did not notice from the plane, at night the vehicles transported troops and weapons.
    The bridge deck was 20-30 cm below the water level.
    Refresh your memory who knows.
    1. Phil77
      Phil77 10 December 2020 18: 36
      +7
      Quote: Blacksmith 55
      Refresh your memory who knows.

      Good evening! Probably you mean this event?
      Not everything fits, but on my own I would add that at the end we are talking about the construction of false bridges as well.
      hi
      1. Blacksmith 55
        Blacksmith 55 10 December 2020 18: 47
        +4
        Thank you, that's what I wanted to say. Lately my memory is failing, I am probably getting old. ))))))
        The author could have given more material.
        One more note. The Romans built a bridge across the Rhine in 10 days, probably they already had experience in construction, because a bridge cannot be built from the bay - the rest of the bridge.
        And the topic is interesting, thank you.
        1. Pamir
          Pamir 10 December 2020 23: 06
          +2
          In Voronezh, across the Voronezh River, there is now a reservoir since 1972, two and a half kilometers wide. From the low left eastern bank to the high right western one, captured by the Wehrmacht. Now it is practically the center of the city, on it is the WWII memorial "Chizhevsky bridgehead". The battle for Voronezh remained in shadow of "Stalingrad", these battles were at the same time. The city was swept away by 90 percent. Near Voronezh, Hungary buried its second army.
      2. Catfish
        Catfish 10 December 2020 21: 25
        +2
        Hi, Seryozha. hi The Germans also crossed the rivers in every way.


    2. Aviator_
      Aviator_ 10 December 2020 21: 00
      +2
      Such bridges in the Second World War were built repeatedly, and by the Germans too. I read about the German bridge in the memoirs of an attack pilot.
    3. Pamir
      Pamir 10 December 2020 22: 58
      +2
      In Voronezh, across the Voronezh River, there is now a reservoir, two kilometers wide.
  5. tasha
    tasha 10 December 2020 19: 28
    +7
    It is sad that the whole history of military crossings from Darius and Caesar to the present day was kept in nine paragraphs ...
  6. aleks neym_2
    aleks neym_2 10 December 2020 19: 29
    +3
    If I am not mistaken, then in 1944 in Belarus they also flooded gats in swamps for camouflage purposes.
  7. Mik13
    Mik13 10 December 2020 22: 11
    +2
    In the Middle Ages, the art of building military bridges in Europe fell into decay: fortress ditches were considered a very reliable obstacle for enemy troops, what can we say about wide and stormy rivers?

    Well, actually, the moat is a difficult obstacle not in itself, but in conjunction with the inhabitants of the fortress, who from the wall very actively object to the appearance of architectural excesses.

    And the issue of the monstrous losses of the besiegers during the engineering preparation of the assault could be radically resolved only with the appearance of artillery, when the design of the defensive structures changed.
  8. kamakama
    kamakama 10 December 2020 22: 34
    +1
    http://saper.isnet.ru/index-texnica.html
    http://army.armor.kiev.ua/engenear/index.shtml
    http://army.armor.kiev.ua/engenear/nem-pontony.shtml
    http://army.armor.kiev.ua/engenear/nem-pontony-b.shtml
    Even here and then it is much clearer and clearer
  9. Amatar
    Amatar 11 December 2020 09: 55
    0
    It's cool that modern pontooners can direct such crossings that modern systems are in service, that military personnel are trained to use them.
    But then a stupid question arose in my head, can these trained pontoons build a ferry from "improvised materials"? Like their grandfathers - with an ax, a saw, a shovel?
    1. taseka
      taseka 13 December 2020 10: 29
      0
      Pontoons cannot, not their profile, but IW bridge-building subdivisions can, using PZMK (bridge construction point) with operation of LRV-2 (military sawmill frame, electric tool with ESD-16I (diesel power station, engineering) and l / s VIK (platoon for the procurement of engineering structures) for RSM (bridge construction area) using KMS-E (bridge construction kit, electrified) with a NDM (low-water wooden bridge) construction rate up to 18 r.m. per hour and a carrying capacity of up to 90 tons.
  10. KVU-NSVD
    KVU-NSVD 11 December 2020 09: 59
    0
    across the Bosphorus. The Greek engineer Mandrocles, a native of the island of Samos, on behalf of the Persian king Darius the First (552–485 BC) built a floating pontoon bridge. It connected the two shores of the Bosphorus at the narrowest point, where the width of the Bosphorus did not exceed 660 meters.
    That's all panhellenic patriotism. About the Greek hoplites - mercenaries and do not want to remember. They are probably proud of the Macedonian ones - of course, they fulfilled the Hellenes' dream of revenge. , but the Spartan Leonidas probably watered the Greek shepherds with ancient Greek obscenities, who, bypassing Fermompil, led Persian archers along goat paths ..
  11. taseka
    taseka 13 December 2020 10: 08
    0
    Caesar's bridge over the Rhine