St. John's Church (Sint-Janskerk), named after St.John the Baptist, was originally built as a baptistery for the St. Servatius Chapter of Maastricht. In 1633, after a period in which it functioned as an autonomous parish church, it came into the possession of the Dutch Reformed Church, established in 1632. This as a result of the capture of Maastricht from the Spanish army in 1632 by the troops of the Seven United Provinces of the Netherlands under the command of Prince Frederik Hendrik of Orange. After the establishment of a state-church, i.e. the Dutch Reformed Church, all catholic churches had become protestant in the regions already conquered.

The Prince Bishop of Liège, the Duke of Brabant and Prince Frederik Hendrik agreed that in Maastricht in principle only smaller chapels should be handed over to the protestants. The bigger churches remained catholic, which was exceptional from a national point of view. However, already in 1633 the protestant chapels proved to be too small and after new discussions two churches, one of which was St.John's, came into the possession of the protestants. The first service of the Dutch Reformed Church took place on the 1st of January, 1634.

Since 1987 the church has been in the use of the 'Protestantse Gemeente St. Jan', a federation of two different reformed communities.

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Details

Founded: 14th century
Category: Religious sites in Netherlands

More Information

www.sintjanmaastricht.nl

Rating

4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Barbara Dzino (3 months ago)
Very good viewpoint of the city. Worth the steps
çağdaş beşoğul (5 months ago)
A church with a red colored belfry, located in the heart of the city, so one way or another you would highly likely see it and also see the extraordinary sculptures in the vicinity of this church
Sam Sam (11 months ago)
Free nice
Robin Irwin (2 years ago)
In the Middle Ages, St. John's Church was one of Maastricht's four parish churches. The church takes its name from John the Baptist and was founded around 1200 by the chapter of Saint Servatius to function as a baptismal and parish church for the Saint Servatius parish. St. John's Church was first mentioned in 1218. The current church dates from the 14th and early 15th centuries. The Gothic baptistery was added in 1414. The original tower collapsed on June 8, 1366 after a violent storm. The current tower was completed in the second half of the fifteenth century after a long restoration. The tower had not always had the striking red color; the colors yellow (early 18th century) and white (early 19th century) are mentioned in writings. During this last restoration, the tower was repainted red in 1983.
Sheila García (2 years ago)
A truly unique point of interest if the city which provides its personality.
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Lorca Castle

Castle of Lorca (Castillo de Lorca) is a fortress of medieval origin constructed between the 9th and 15th centuries. It consists of a series of defensive structures that, during the Middle Ages, made the town and the fortress an impregnable point in the southeast part of the Iberian Peninsula. Lorca Castle was a key strategic point of contention between Christians and Muslims during the Reconquista.

Archaeological excavations have revealed that the site of the castle has been inhabited since Neolithic times.

Muslim Era

It has not been determined exactly when a castle or fortress was first built on the hill. The first written documentation referring to a castle at Lorca is of Muslim origin, which in the 9th century, indicates that the city of Lurqa was an important town in the area ruled by Theudimer (Tudmir). During Muslim rule, Lorca Castle was an impregnable fortress and its interior was divided into two sections by the Espaldón Wall. In the western part, there was an area used to protect livestock and grain in times of danger. The eastern part had a neighbourhood called the barrio de Alcalá.

After Reconquista

Lorca was conquered by the Castilian Infante Don Alfonso, the future Alfonso X, in 1244, and the fortress became a key defensive point against the Kingdom of Granada. For 250 years, Lorca Castle was a watchpoint on the border between the Christian kingdom of Murcia and the Muslim state of Granada.

Alfonso X ordered the construction of the towers known as the Alfonsina and Espolón Towers, and strengthened and fixed the walls. Hardly a trace of the Muslim fortress remained due to this reconstruction. Muslim traces remain in the foundation stones and the wall known as the muro del Espaldón.

The Jewish Quarter was found within the alcazaba, the Moorish fortification, separated from the rest of the city by its walls. The physical separation had the purpose of protecting the Jewish people in the town from harm, but also had the result of keeping Christians and Jews separate, with the Christians inhabiting the lower part of town.

The remains of the Jewish Quarter extended over an area of 5,700 square m, and 12 homes and a synagogue have been found; the synagogue dates from the 14th century and is the only one found in the Murcia. The streets of the town had an irregular layout, adapted to the landscape, and is divided into four terraces. The synagogue was in the central location, and around it were the homes. The homes were of rectangular shape, with various compartmentalized rooms. The living quarters were elevated and a common feature was benches attached to the walls, kitchens, stand for earthenware jars, or cupboards.

Modern history

With the disappearance of the frontier after the conquest of Granada in 1492, Lorca Castle no longer became as important as before. With the expulsion of the Jews by order of Ferdinand and Isabella, Lorca Castle was also depopulated as a result. The castle was abandoned completely, and was almost a complete ruin by the 18th century. In the 19th century, the castle was refurbished due to the War of Spanish Independence. The walls and structures were repaired or modified and its medieval look changed. A battery of cannons was installed, for example, during this time. In 1931 Lorca Castle was declared a National Historic Monument.

Currently, a parador (luxury hotel) has been built within the castle. As a result, archaeological discoveries have been found, including the Jewish Quarter.