National Geographic : 1937 Oct
Photograph by W. Robert Moore THE MARCO POLO BRIDGE, FOR CENTURIES A VITAL HIGHWAY LINK, WAS THE SCENE OF RECENT FIGHTING First clashes between troops of China and Japan, early in July, took place nine miles southwest of Peiping, near this 11-arched bridge which foreigners named in honor of the Venetian adventurer. Returning to Europe after his long visit at the court of KublaiKhan, more than 600 years ago, Marco Polo described "a very fine stone bridge," which "ten mounted men can ride across . . . abreast." This structure over the silt-laden Hun Ho isguarded along its railings by a double line of stone lions, so numerous, according to tradition, that to count them drives men mad.