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The main market of Brussels has been used as a market, since its creation beginning 10th century.
Vegetables and poultry were sold, but also birds maintained into cages for their singing…
At the end of 17th century, King Louis the 14th of France willing to conquer the Low Countries (name of Belgium at that time), bombed in 1685 the center of the City and the market. Most of the houses were made out of wood and burned for more than a week. Only the Town Hall made out of stone remained. As most of the market-houses were the siege of the craft-corporations, these competed to have their house built up again as fast as could be.They managed to do so between 1690 and 1693. All the buiding craftmen rushed to Brussels all over from Germany and France. They built all the houses, we can admire now.
Most of the houses were café’s, where people could meet, talk, and bargain after the market. The upper levels were habitations. The French poet Victor Hugo lived there being a refugee in 1848 as he couldn’t bear Napoleon the III. Nowadays, they are very expensive flat appartments
The house where Victor Hugo (19th C.French writer and poet on exile) remained.
Victor Hugo lived as a refugee in 1848. He took the opportunity to visit the battlefield of the Battle of Waterloo (1815) and to write a well-known epopee
There was founded in 1895 the Workers’political party. Nextdoor on the left ,was and is still the main house of the brewers. he decoration of all the house in Barocco-style.
by : Claire
Manneken-Pis (a 100m. away from the Grand-Place)
This little 17th C. boy is supposed to be the oldest inhabitant of the city of Brussels. He is supposed to have gotten lost, and when found back, he was in this positon !
His family was so happy that they offered a water-fontain to the inhabitants of the neighborough. Although, it often rains in Belgium, people have to run far awy to fetch water. offering a fountain was thus a great gift !
When an important guest visits Brussels, he usually offers a costume to this little boy. He has nowaday a special museum with more than 600 costumes!
Whenever, someone comes back to Brussels, Manneken-Pis is dressed up . He is about 80cm high !
This square was built on the ruins of a previous royal palace, that burned out around 1715. Around 1780, huge works started in the “classical” style inspired by the castle of Versailles (France). It was supposed to be used for military parades,as the new palace was built “around the corner”
Archeological researches were made by Brussels University 10 years ago: the coronation room was found again as well a small street(for the level has been completely changed,because the huge quantity of the ruins). An underground museum was created.
Was erected in 1958 for the World Exhebition. It represents a molecule of cristal iron and symbolizes the 9 provinces of Belgium. Each sphere has a diameter of 18 m.
It is 102m. high and weighs 2400 tons. The designer was Ingenior André Waterkeyn.
For its 5Oth anniversary, it was completely restaured,with partly by private gifts, for the inhabtants of Brussels consider it as part of their city and their memory. The World Fair “Expo 58” was an exceptional happy period after the second world war Europeans were thinking Science would solve everything and that there would be no war anymore, that there would be work and food for everyone…
Like usual people discovered far away countries.Belgian Congo showed life unhabitants(like in a zoo!!!), but had to send them back after 2 days !
One year and a half later, Congo was asking Independance and got it in June 1960 !!!
by : Claire
Location :15 km. South of Brussels
Last battle of Emperor Napoleon on June 18,1815 against the “allied” forces of Europe: Austria, Great-Britain, Prussia,Netherland(all old reigning families, while Napoleon wasn’t a noble man(although very intelligent), he crowned himself Emperor !
He almost won the battle, BUT his observers hadn’t noticed, many Prussian soldiers were hidden in a small valley covered by trees and bushes (le vallon d’Ohain).
They encercled SOUTH the French army, which couldn’t escape,because the rest of the Allied troops were NORTH.
Napoleon was taken prisonner and sent by Britain to the remote island of St Helena,where he finally died in 1821 (?)
In order NEVER to be invaded anymore by France, the Allied nations got together at the Congress of Vienna(1815),and remodeled the political map of Europe :Small Belgium was given to Nederland.But Belgium got rid of Nederland in 1830(Belgian revolution), because this country didn’t respect the Belgian population….!
The huge monument “Lion of Waterloo” was erected there where the King of Nederland had fallen from his horse
Peasants still do find remains(bones or pieces of uniforms) from this battle