Saturday, March 1, 2014

Haverwerf, Mechelen

Quirky Belgium

The Travelled Monkey - Haverwerf, Mechelen
Haverwerf, Mechelen  Photo by John Weaver

Mechelen was once a hub for the grain trade in Flanders. These three beautiful houses from the 1500’s and 1600’s sit on the Haverwerf (Oat Yard), where boats carrying grain on the Dijle river tied up when they arrived in Mechelen. 

About the houses...

The corner house on the right is called Het Paradijske, Little Paradise. The reliefs above the windows depict the scenes ‘Earthly paradise’ and ‘The tree of the knowledge of good and evil.’ 


The Travelled Monkey - Haverwerf, Mechelen

The Travelled Monkey - Haverwerf, Mechelen



In the middle with a wooden fa├žade is De Duiveltjes, The Little Devils, named after the little devils which act as pillars. 




The house on the left is called Sint-Jozef (Saint Joseph). In the middle is a relief of St Joseph with the Child Jesus.


The Travelled Monkey - Haverwerf, Mechelen


-----
"The cool thing about being famous is traveling. I have always wanted to travel across seas, like to Canada and stuff." 

- Britney Spears

5 comments:

  1. What happened to grain in flanders? Can you get to the sea from there?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi - yes, you can get to the sea from all over Flanders via the rivers and canals. Not sure how much grain was exported, but Mechelen had control of the grain produced in Flanders. On the city website it says: "Originally oats were unloaded and traded here. Oats used to be synonymous with grain and Mechelen had the exclusive staple rights to grain. Boats carrying grain had to tie up in Mechelen and offer the whole cargo for sale for three whole days. Only what the merchants did not sell in Mechelen could be loaded back onto the boats and taken elsewhere."

      Delete
  2. And do you have bike paths like in Antwerp?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Definitely - Mechelen's a very bike-friendly city. It's much smaller than Antwerp though. There's actually a "bike highway" between the two cities. You can check out the route here:
      http://www.provant.be/mobiliteit/fietsen/fietsostrades/antwerpen-mechelen/index.jsp

      Delete
  3. Lovely pictures John! I adore the Haverwerf and Vismarkt in Mechelen, especially on a warm summer day.

    ReplyDelete