Love Locks have begun showing up in many places around the world, including the Pont Des Arts in the heart of Paris. Lovers attach a lock with their names engraved or words of love scribbled, then toss the key into the Seine to symbolize their eternal love.
The origin of this phenomenon is a mystery. It is thought it may have been started by Italian tourists enacting the plot of a sentimental novel by Federico Moccia, in which the protagonists hung a lock inscribed with their names on a lamppost near Ponte Milvio in Rome, kissed and threw the key into the Tiber.
Others think the trend started in Moscow where railings on the Luzhkov Bridge are so crowded with “locks of love” that special metal poles have been added to cope with the collection.
Similar fads have been reported on bridges in Brussels, Kiev, Vilnius, the Ponte Vecchio in Florence, in Venice and naturally, the Ponte Pietra in Verona, Romeo and Juliet’s hometown.
Last year, City Hall declared them unsightly and they must be removed because they "raise problems for the preservation of our archeological heritage". It seemed a bit ironic coming from the Guardians of the City of Love...
Stumbling across the thousands of locks adorning the footbridge was a lovely surprise for me. I love spontaneous acts of love! I have a feeling that simply removing the locks will only encourage more couples to declare their love on this romantic footbridge in Paris... especially on Valentine's Day.