Forest Abbey

Brussels, Belgium

Forest Abbey is a Benedictine Abbey founded in 1105, beside a creek, a tributary of the Zenne, southwest of the city of Brussels. The abbots of Affligem, which had been the ecclesiastical owners of the parish since the bishop of Cambrai ceded it to them in 1105, decided to build a priory for women in Forest, Forest Abbey. The first abbess of the Forest priory was named in 1239. Also in the 13th century, the Romanesque church of Saint Denis was rebuilt in the newer Gothic style. The neighbouring abbatial church was rebuilt in the 15th century.

Relics of Saint Alena, whose cult was popular in the region, were formerly kept both in the parish church and in the abbey church, but since 1796 only in the parish church.

Much of the abbey was destroyed by fire on 26 March 1764. The abbey was suppressed on 8 October 1796 and sold the following year. The buildings that survived the dismantling are now a cultural center for seminars, banquets and exhibitions, owned by the Brussels municipality of Forest.

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Founded: 1105
Category: Religious sites in Belgium

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