Bridge of Partav

The bridge is situated over the old channel of the river Trtu (Tartar), in the neighbourhood of present-day Barda City, in the town site of Partav—once the capital of the historical region of Armenian Albania [a toponym used with reference to the historical districts of Artsakh and Utik of Metz Hayk (Armenia Maior), to differentiate them from Caucasian Albania proper, lying on the left bank of the river Kur]—at an altitude of 77 metres above sea level. Undoubtedly, the foundation of this bridge dates back to the period when Partav enjoyed prosperity, namely, to the 5th to 7th centuries (subsequently it repeatedly underwent renovation). __11. Karapetian, S. Armenian Cultural Monuments in the Region of Karabakh. Yerevan, 2001, pp. 204-205. In the late 1880s, a traveller wrote the following about the monument, that had been long lying in ruins: “…170 metres long, 5 metres wide and 16 spans, whose arches are already destroyed, with only the piers and walls preserved on both sides. All its cornerstones seem to have been finely-finished, the other stones being undressed. It is said to have had an Armenian inscription, but it can no longer be found now…” __22. Barkhutariants, M. Artsakh. Baku, 1895, pp. 31-32 (the original in Armenian).

The bridge of Partav represented a structure of 16 spans with 17 massive piers—2 terminal and 15 middle ones. According to the results of subsequent measurement conducted amidst the remnants of the bridge, it had a passage width of 4 metres and a general length of 120 metres—these figures are more reliable as compared to those adduced in the quotation above. __33. Useinov, M., Bretanitsski L., Salamzade A. History of the Architecture of Azerbaijan. Moscow, 1963, p. 40 (the original in Russian). The main building material used in the erection of the bridge comprises cobblestone with mortar.