Gaasbeek Castle, today a national museum, was erected around 1240 to defend the Duchy of Brabant against the County of Flanders. The castle was destroyed however by Brussels city troops in revenge for the assassination of Everard t'Serclaes, which was commanded by the Lord of Gaasbeek.
At the beginning of the 16th century the Horne family constructed a brick castle on the ruins of the medieval fortress. In 1565 Lamoral, Count of Egmont, acquired the castle and its domain, including feudal rights in 17 surrounding villages. Accused of high treason by Philip II of Spain, the Count of Egmont was beheaded three years later.
In the following centuries the castle was inhabited by several noble families. It obtained its pseudo-medieval appearance as the result of a renovation during the years 1887-1898. The works were executed by the architect Charles Albert and ordered by the Marquis d'Arconati Visconti who owned the castle at that time. His widow Marie Peyrat (d. 1922) donated the castle to the Belgian state, including the art collection and the grounds.
Since 1980 the castle has been owned by the Flemish Community. The castle contains impressive art collections displayed in lavishly decorated historical rooms. A remarkable collection piece is the authentic testament of the famous painter Peter Paul Rubens The castle and its grounds (a park of 50 hectares or 124 acres) are open to the public.References:
The historic city of Trogir is situated on a small island between the Croatian mainland and the island of Čiovo. Since 1997, it has been included in the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites for its Venetian architecture.
Trogir has 2300 years of continuous urban tradition. Its culture was created under the influence of the ancient Greeks, and then the Romans, and Venetians. Trogir has a high concentration of palaces, churches, and towers, as well as a fortress on a small island. The orthogonal street plan of this island settlement dates back to the Hellenistic period and it was embellished by successive rulers with many fine public and domestic buildings and fortifications. Its beautiful Romanesque churches are complemented by the outstanding Renaissance and Baroque buildings from the Venetian period.
Trogir is the best-preserved Romanesque-Gothic complex not only in the Adriatic, but in all of Central Europe. Trogir's medieval core, surrounded by walls, comprises a preserved castle and tower and a series of dwellings and palaces from the Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque periods. Trogir's grandest building is the church of St. Lawrence, whose main west portal is a masterpiece by Radovan, and the most significant work of the Romanesque-Gothic style in Croatia.