Lots and lots of Locks.


The view from the Ponte Vecchio in Florence, Italy, is stunning in every direction. Yet despite all of the eye candy within site (the Arno river, two other breathtaking bridges, all in the shadow of Brunelleschi’s famous dome), the question going through my mind was, “what’s with all the locks?”

Cadeados do amor (3845547091) (2).jpg

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

I asked a local who explained the tradition. These are love locks, usually inscribed with a couple’s names, initials, or significant date, then locked to the bridge to symbolize that the two are locked together in love forever (“until they get divorced…then they come back cut the lock and toss it in the river” said the caption of the photo below from Wikimedia Commons).


Locks of love (94816437).jpg

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

In many places these love locks are frowned upon or even illegal, being considered anywhere from a nuisance to a form of vandalism. I’m told authorities come periodically and remove the locks.



Love locks such as these can be found in cities worldwide. While the history buff in me does not want to see these locks cause any damage, the romantic in me thinks they are very sweet. Che ne pensate? What do you guys think?



This post first appeared on Prayers and Piazzas in response to The Daily Post’s prompt: Locked. If this is your first time here, I invite you to sign my guestbook, or join me on Facebook where I share often about Italy.


6 Comments Add yours

  1. While it’s a romantic notion, the weight of these locks can cause serious damage to the gates or monuments they are applied to, so it is vandalism. Venezia had a campaign going a while back to stop them as they were causing damage to the bridges. I believe it’s now illegal and any locks are removed. As I once overheard ‘Basta con questi maledetti luchetti!’. Ciao, Cristina

    1. Ciao Cristina! I am in agreement with you and the other comments here. These locks cause too much distraction and destruction in places of historical and artistic beauty. Thank you for your thoughts, and for teaching me a new word! (luchetti) 🙂

  2. Debra Kolkka says:

    I hate them! I consider it vandalism. They are illegal on Ponte Vecchio, and I hope they do actually find people for doing it. Plant a rosebush or put a lock on your own fence.

    1. You make a good point, Debra, and you have changed my opinion.

  3. bonniegm says:

    Unfortunately it is a fad that has gotten completely out of hand. The lovely statue in the third photo down is artistically affected since the hundreds of locks are an incredible distraction to the eye. I have heard that in some places there are specifically designated/created spots for the “love locks” which would be a reasonable alternative. Yet when were the young and in love ever reasonable. 😉

    1. Very well said, Bonnie. 🙂 It really is such a distraction in places of historical value and beauty.

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