iPhoneOgraphy – 06 Dec 2016 (Day 341/366)
A love lock or love padlock is a padlock which sweethearts lock to a bridge, fence, gate, or similar public fixture to symbolize their love. Typically the sweethearts’ names or initials are inscribed on the padlock, and its key is thrown away to symbolize unbreakable love. Since the 2000s, love locks have proliferated at an increasing number of locations worldwide. They are now mostly treated by municipal authorities as litter or vandalism, and there is some cost to their removal. However, there are authorities who embrace them, and who use them as fundraising projects or tourism attractions.
The history of love padlocks dates back at least 100 years to a melancholic Serbian tale of World War I, with an attribution for the bridge Most Liubavi (lit. the Bridge of Love) in the spa town of Venjačka Banja. A local schoolmistress named Nada, who was from Vrnjačka Banja, fell in love with a Serbian officer named Relja. After they committed to each other Relja went to war in Greece where he fell in love with a local woman from Corfu. As a consequence, Relja and Nada broke off their engagement. Nada never recovered from that devastating blow, and after some time she died due to heartbreak from her unfortunate love. As young women from Vrnjačka Banja wanted to protect their own loves, they started writing down their names, with the names of their loved ones, on padlocks and affixing them to the railings of the bridge where Nada and Relja used to meet.
In the rest of Europe, love padlocks started appearing in the early 2000s. The reasons love padlocks started to appear vary between locations and in many instances are unclear. However, in Rome, the ritual of affixing love padlocks to the bridge Ponte Milvio can be attributed to the 2006 book I Want You by Italian author Federico Moccia, who made a film adaptation in 2007.
iPhoneOgraphy – 21 May 2016 (Day 142/366)
Padlocks are portable locks with a shackle that may be passed through an opening (such as a chain link, or hasp staple) to prevent use, theft, vandalism or harm.
There are padlocks dating to the Roman Era, 500 BC – 300 AD. They were known in early times by merchants traveling the ancient trade routes to Asia, including China.
Padlocks have been used in China since the late Eastern Han Dynasty (25–220 AD). According to Hong-Sen Yan, director of the National Science and Technology Museum, early Chinese padlocks were mainly “key-operated locks with splitting springs, and partially keyless letter combination locks”. Padlocks were made from bronze, brass, silver, and other materials. The use of bronze was more prevalent for the early Chinese padlocks.
Padlocks with spring tine mechanisms have been found in York, England, at the Jorvik Viking settlement, dated 850 AD. During this period between 850 AD and the early 1000 AD was when the name ‘padlock’ was coined. It was contrived during this period to initially hold livestock within its quarters of the paddock, whereby the word pad was derived and applied to form the current word.