Neo-Romanian street lamp pole

Late 1920s cast iron Neo-Romanian style street lighting pole, North Cismigiu area, Bucharest. (©Valentin Mandache)

I apologise to my readers for not posting my usual Romanian architectural history daily articles since last Sunday. That was due to unforeseen health problems of one of my close family members and only now I was able to immerse back again in this stimulating blogging routine.

The image above shows one of the very few remaining cast iron street lighting poles in Bucharest, dating from late 1920s, of a quaint design that incorporates the rope motif prevalent in the Neo-Romanian decorative and architectural style. It gives an indication of the wonderful urban landscape that distinguished the Romanian capital in the inter-war period, which is now fast disappearing at the hands of rapacious and mostly uncultured property developers and local officials, products of the low quality education system that characterises Romania of the communist and post-communist years.


I endeavor through this daily series of images and small articles to inspire appreciation of the historic houses of Romania, a virtually undiscovered, but fascinating chapter of European architectural history and heritage.


If you plan acquiring a historic property in Romania or start a renovation project, I would be delighted to advice you in sourcing the property, specialist research, planning permissions, restoration project management, etc. To discuss your particular plan please see my contact details in the Contactpage of this weblog.

2 thoughts on “Neo-Romanian street lamp pole

  • Hello Valentin

    One thing that comes across in your photographs of Bucharest – quite incidentally to the primary subject matter – is the astounding profusion of cables, wires and other ‘service’ paraphernalia (eg air conditioning units) that seem to have been installed with no regard to their negative aesthetic impact! These photographs of the cast-iron telegraph pole take the biscuit in this respect. What an incredible tangle!

    I suppose you become able to disregard them when you live with them on a daily basis. Or maybe not?

    Best Wishes,

    Chris Baker


    • Hello Chris,
      The wires dangling all over the places and the air conditioning units (an important status symbol for the locals, as the satellite dishes used to be) are unfortunately ubiquitous features of Bucharest. Those together with the chaotic traffic and lack of parking spaces make the city very unfriendly and incomprehensible to an outside visitor. I grew quite used with the unsightly implements and learned how to see through or under them when looking for architectural history details. The city authorities, an elite of typical Balkan mentality and traditions, are largely responsible for this mess through their lack of vision, terrible mismanagement of funds and deep corruption. Most of Bucharest’s population is at a stage cultural development akin to that of Victorian industrial revolution and there is going to be quite a while (in my opinion a generation) until the locals will again start to value their architectural heritage. Their inter-war counterparts were much more sophisticated and educated, but unfortunately a large proportion of them them were wiped out by the WWII and the communist regime repressions and thus unable to instil those values to the post-war generations.
      Best regards,



Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s