The Gevangenpoort (Prisoner's Gate) is a former gate and medieval prison on the Buitenhof. From 1420 until 1828, the prison was used for housing people who had committed serious crimes while they awaited sentencing.

Its most famous prisoner was Cornelis de Witt, who was held on the charge of plotting the murder of the stadtholder. He was lynched together with his brother Johan on 20 August 1672 on the square in front of the building.

In 1882, the Gevangenpoort became a prison museum. The 'gate' function was lost in 1923 when the houses adjoining the Hofvijver were taken down to build the street that now allows busy traffic to run by it.

Since 2010, museum visitors can view the restored art gallery that can be reached through a special staircase that connects the two buildings. The collection which hangs here is a modern reconstruction of the original 1774 art cabinet that was situated upstairs above the fencing school. The paintings are again upstairs, hanging crowded together on the walls in the style of the late 18th-century. In 1822 the collection was moved to the Mauritshuis which remains the formal owner of the paintings on display. During restoration activities, highlights of the permanent Mauritshuis collection have been temporarily displayed in the gallery.

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Address

Buitenhof 33, Hague, Netherlands
See all sites in Hague

Details

Founded: 1420
Category: Museums in Netherlands

Rating

4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Kees Weij (3 months ago)
Beautiful old building where until 1860 prisoners were kept and prosacuted. You can vist the old cell blocks and the more convenient ones for knights and women. They also have a lot of original torture instrument and other equipement that was used to interrogate prisoners. Also information concerning one of the most famous prisoner, Cornelis de Witt.
Anders Neldeberg Nielsen (13 months ago)
The museum is not very big and does not have a lot of interesting items to watch I have been to better criminal museums and was a bit disappointed about this museum. I was there for approx 30-45 min, which I think is too little for the entrance price
Tim Wichmann (14 months ago)
This is especially something you should visit with your kids starting at age of 8. You can literally feel the history.
Natália Leal (19 months ago)
Interesting; a former prison. They offer a regular guided tour in Dutch, or you can use a free audio guide for other languages. Dutch Museum Card accepted.
Caley Stothers (2 years ago)
Best value for Dutch speakers. Self-guided portion is small (one-room) and takes 10 minutes. Guided tour is the highlight. Spaces are interesting and preserved well, but the tours are only in Dutch. We had an English audio device, but our devices were done 1/4-1/3 of the way through the guide’s animated Dutch explanations of the rooms, so we were left standing around for what felt like most of the tour.
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