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

Osman “Ozzie” G (4 months ago)
I was fortunate to experience the mesmerizing atmosphere of this 12th-century chapel in Bruges, Belgium. It's said to house a vial containing fabric stained with Christ's blood, attracting the faithful, skeptics, and the curious alike. The chapel's historical significance and magnetic relic leave an indelible mark on all who step inside.
Kuba Szafran (4 months ago)
Entry to the Basilica is free of charge and there's no waiting. Between 12 and 16, you can view the relics of the Most Holy Blood of Christ. You might need to wait in a queue (I waited 20 minutes). You can make a voluntary donation and spend a moment in prayer before the Relics.
RvH Ronald (4 months ago)
Beautiful basilica situated in Bruges and which is divided in a upper one, where the Holy Blood Relic between 14.00 and 16.00hrs. is offered to visitors for veneration, and a lower basilica which is smaller. Both are beautiful but the upper basilica has still my preference ?
M Bodily (5 months ago)
What it lacks in size it makes up for in awesomeness! My kids loved seeing the relic. It was an experience I think they will always remember!
D Kovacova (6 months ago)
A stunning basilica amazingly hidden in plain sight. Thank you so much for your hospitality and for an unforgettable experience. - the tourist couple from Thursday night
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