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The Devil's Bridge

Borgo a Mozzano, Bagni di Lucca, Italy

The "Ponte della Maddalena" is commonly known as the “Devil’s Bridge“. Like many other structures that seemed impossible to construct at the time, its construction was attributed to the devil.

Legend has it that the head mason building the bridge was having trouble with building. His workers were delaying more and more until it was the day before the deadline, and it wasn't even half finished. So he called for the Devil and made a deal with him, which enabled him to complete the work in one night in exchange for the first soul that would cross the bridge when it opened the next day.

The head mason accepted and the bridge was completed. The head mason then realises what a terrible mistake he has made, and does not want anyone's soul to be taken. So he visits the village priest, who hears the confession and thinks of a way to trick the devil.

So the next day at the grand opening, the head mason forces a dog to cross the bridge. The Devil took the dog and, furious that he had been tricked, threw himself from the highest point of the bridge into the waters below. It is also said that the dog, a "Maremma" sheepdog, which is completely white, can sometimes be seen walking across the bridge in the last night of October (which represents the devil, who still seeks the soul of the mason).

However, the legend varies and some say that a wolf was pushed across, or maybe a pig or a sheep.

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