Saint Waltrude Collegiate Church

Mons, Belgium

Saint Waltrude Collegiate Church dates back to 1450, and the origin of the famous chapter of noble canonesses that seated for centuries inside this church. The chapter played an important part in the local history, all of the Canonesse were familymembers of important noble houses. Antoine-Joseph Fetis, titular organist, taught his eldest son François-Joseph the first steps of the practice of organ music.

Inside the church important graves can be found amongst them Antoine de Carondelet and Alice of Namur.

The exterior of the church is a fine example of Brabant Gothic architecture, parts are built by Matheus de Layens. However in the 17th century the works stopped and the building was never completely finished. The interior contains important artworks, including sculptures by Jacques du Broeucq and paintings by Peter Paul Rubens, Floris de Vriendt, Theodoor van Thulden, Otto Venius and Michiel Coxie.

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Address

Rue Samson 27, Mons, Belgium
See all sites in Mons

Details

Founded: 1450
Category: Religious sites in Belgium

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

Rating

4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Gerard Seghers (8 months ago)
Magnificent gothique church with excellent audio guide in English you can download on your phone...
Harry G.C (11 months ago)
Dear Bryony, I once again write to you on this platform. Did you find your own way here this time? I hope so. We have plans of visiting Belgium someday, and though Brugge is far north of here, I thought you might appreciate the patron of this beautiful church. She is known for freeing captives by paying their ransom out of her own pocket. I know you sometimes worry you'll have to do the same for me. Let's hope not. But if you do, we can expect a church to be erected* off the Kingsland road in your name. I did some Digging and found that a northern renaissance painter called Jan Provoost was born Upon this town. I liked these painting (attached) because Of their striking divergence from what we saw in Florence. Or Maybe they're not all that different and I've forgotten the Orwellian eyes and underworld serpents. I wonder, is it a little suffocating that I'm showing this kind Of interest in your interests? I'd understand if it is. I might be in Paris by the time you read this, in which case I am definitely missing you. Right now you are at a secret live show or back at home in bed. I am chipping away at my paper on sentimentality, thinking of you. I love you dearly. Harry xx P.S. To any passer-by, I hope this old postcard of the church interior will serve as an apology for using this space.
Jens Van Loon (12 months ago)
Beautiful church, early mediaeval/Roman style. Good preserved. No entree fee.
Sébastien Cerles (14 months ago)
From the inside, it is wonderfully pure and slendered. Furthermore, parts of an ancient jubé have been included in the different chapels, which are often magnificent. Note that the visit is free.
Susan Boyd (18 months ago)
I have a love of ancient architecture and this cathedral did not disappoint. The detail in the gargoyles and grotesques are beautiful. Inside in each nave is a painting or fresco, some dating back to the 1300s. The stained glass has not only stations of the cross, but also represents each state/province of the area as well with crests of each in one large window group. It is absolutely beautiful. This is an active church, however, so I would caution non religious visitors to use respect when there. People will be there in prayer or confession, so please keep quiet while here.
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Veste Coburg

The Veste Coburg is one of Germany's largest castles. The hill on which the fortress stands was inhabited from the Neolithic to the early Middle Ages according to the results of excavations. The first documentary mention of Coburg occurs in 1056, in a gift by Richeza of Lotharingia. Richeza gave her properties to Anno II, Archbishop of Cologne, to allow the creation of Saalfeld Abbey in 1071. In 1075, a chapel dedicated to Saint Peter and Saint Paul is mentioned on the fortified Coberg. This document also refers to a Vogt named Gerhart, implying that the local possessions of the Saalfeld Benedictines were administered from the hill.

A document signed by Pope Honorius II in 1206 refers to a mons coburg, a hill settlement. In the 13th century, the hill overlooked the town of Trufalistat (Coburg's predecessor) and the important trade route from Nuremberg via Erfurt to Leipzig. A document dated from 1225 uses the term schloss (palace) for the first time. At the time, the town was controlled by the Dukes of Merania. They were followed in 1248 by the Counts of Henneberg who ruled Coburg until 1353, save for a period from 1292-1312, when the House of Ascania was in charge.

In 1353, Coburg fell to Friedrich, Markgraf von Meißen of the House of Wettin. His successor, Friedrich der Streitbare was awarded the status of Elector of Saxony in 1423. As a result of the Hussite Wars the fortifications of the Veste were expanded in 1430.

Early modern times through Thirty Years' War

In 1485, in the Partition of Leipzig, Veste Coburg fell to the Ernestine branch of the family. A year later, Elector Friedrich der Weise and Johann der Beständige took over the rule of Coburg. Johann used the Veste as a residence from 1499. In 1506/07, Lucas Cranach the Elder lived and worked in the Veste. From April to October 1530, during the Diet of Augsburg, Martin Luther sought protection at the Veste, as he was under an Imperial ban at the time. Whilst he stayed at the fortress, Luther continued with his work translating the Bible into German. In 1547, Johann Ernst moved the residence of the ducal family to a more convenient and fashionable location, Ehrenburg Palace in the town centre of Coburg. The Veste now only served as a fortification.

In the further splitting of the Ernestine line, Coburg became the seat of the Herzogtum von Sachsen-Coburg, the Duchy of Saxe-Coburg. The first duke was Johann Casimir (1564-1633), who modernized the fortifications. In 1632, the fortress was unsuccessfully besieged by Imperial and Bavarian forces commanded by Albrecht von Wallenstein for seven days during the Thirty Years' War. Its defence was commanded by Georg Christoph von Taupadel. On 17 March 1635, after a renewed siege of five months' duration, the Veste was handed over to the Imperials under Guillaume de Lamboy.

17th through 19th centuries

From 1638-72, Coburg and the Veste were part of the Duchy of Saxe-Altenburg. In 1672, they passed to the Dukes of Saxe-Gotha and in 1735 it was joined to the Duchy of Saxe-Saalfeld. Following the introduction of Primogeniture by Duke Franz Josias (1697-1764), Coburg went by way of Ernst Friedrich (1724-1800) to Franz (1750-1806), noted art collector, and to Duke Ernst III (1784-1844), who remodeled the castle.

In 1826, the Duchy of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha was created and Ernst now styled himself 'Ernst I'. Military use of the Veste had ceased by 1700 and outer fortifications had been demolished in 1803-38. From 1838-60, Ernst had the run-down fortress converted into a Gothic revival residence. In 1860, use of the Zeughaus as a prison (since 1782) was discontinued. Through a successful policy of political marriages, the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha established links with several of the major European dynasties, including that of the United Kingdom.

20th century

The dynasty ended with the reign of Herzog Carl Eduard (1884-1954), also known as Charles Edward, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, a grandson of Queen Victoria, who until 1919 also was the 2nd Duke of Albany in the United Kingdom. Under his rule, many changes made to the Veste in the 19th century were reversed under architect Bodo Ebhardt, with the aim of restoring a more authentic medieval look. Along with the other ruling princes of Germany, Carl Eduard was deposed in the revolution of 1918-1919. After Carl Eduard abdicated in late 1918, the Veste came into possession of the state of Bavaria, but the former duke was allowed to live there until his death. The works of art collected by the family were gifted to the Coburger Landesstiftung, a foundation, which today runs the museum.

In 1945, the Veste was seriously damaged by artillery fire in the final days of World War II. After 1946, renovation works were undertaken by the new owner, the Bayerische Verwaltung der staatlichen Schlösser, Gärten und Seen.

Today

The Veste is open to the public and today houses museums, including a collection art objects and paintings that belonged to the ducal family of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, a large collection of arms and armor, significant examples of early modern coaches and sleighs, and important collections of prints, drawings and coins.