Basilica of the Holy Blood

Bruges, Belgium

The Basilica of the Holy Blood is a Roman Catholic minor basilica in Bruges. Originally built in the 12th century as the chapel of the residence of the Count of Flanders, the church houses a venerated relic of the Holy Blood allegedly collected by Joseph of Arimathea and brought from the Holy Land by Thierry of Alsace, Count of Flanders. Built between 1134 and 1157, it was promoted to minor basilica in 1923.

The 12th-century basilica is located in the Burg square and consists of a lower and upper chapel. The lower chapel dedicated to St. Basil the Great is a dark Romanesque structure that remains virtually unchanged. The venerated relic is in the upper chapel, which was rebuilt in the Gothic style during the 16th century and renovated multiple times during the 19th century in Gothic Revival style.

Legend has it that after the Crucifixion, Joseph of Arimathea wiped blood from the body of Christ and preserved the cloth. The relic remained in the Holy Land until the Second Crusade, when the King of Jerusalem Baldwin III gave it to his brother-in-law, Count of Flanders Diederik van de Elzas. The count arrived with it in Bruges on April 7, 1150 and placed it in a chapel he had built on Burg Square.



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Burg 13, Bruges, Belgium
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Founded: 1134-1157
Category: Religious sites in Belgium


4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Lisa Haqq (4 months ago)
Magnificent church housing a relic of a cloth that legend says was used to wash Jesus after he was crucified. It is brought out only at certain times of the day so check that first if you want to see it. The church itself is really beautiful with magnificent stained glass, paintings, artefacts, and architecture
1girl 1passport (4 months ago)
We came across the Basilica while exploring the town and being in the square. You can enter 2 out of 3 rooms for free. While worth a visit if you are in the square.
M. L. (12 months ago)
This is an amazing place that allegedly preserves the Holy Blood of our Lord Jesus. Came there multiple times and literally cried over the blood soaked stuff kept in what seemed like a tube. Hope it was real so I did not shed tears for something fake.
Bob Thu (13 months ago)
Great place to visit. The chariot ride through old Town cobble stone streets was very enjoyable.
nayyar armani (2 years ago)
Calm place of worship
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