History of Brugge Belgium

City in northwestern Belgium, capital of West Flanders Province, about one half hour by train to the port of Oostende. The city is connected by canals to Oostende, Ghent, and the ocean port of Zeebrugge. In the past Brugge was a textile manufacturer specializing in Bobbin style fine lace, Considered one of the best preserved medieval city in Europe. Other industries are chemical manufacturing, brewing, and shipbuilding.

50 bridges that span the canals in the city and that can be opened to permit the passage of ships. There is a marketplace in the center, with a Belfry or Bell Tower 108 m (353 ft) high;

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Art treasures of the city are Virgin and Child (1501-1505), a marble sculpture attributed to Michelangelo, and the chief paintings of Hans Memling and home of their famous artist Jan Van Eyck.


9th Century
Flemish fortify the city.
From the 9th century to the 15 century Brugge Flourished. As a center of commerce, and a became a member of the  Hanseatic League about 1340. A group of merchants that worked to protect the trade routes, and systemize the process.

15th Century
The Zwyn river slowly closed around the end of the 15th century and the center of the commerce moved to Antwerp.

1795 to 1814
During the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars, the city was ruled by France.

1814 to 1830
It was a possession of the Netherlands from ,

Belgian independence from Netherlands.

20th Century
Construction of the canal between Brugge and Zeebrugge and ocean port.

1914-1918 German military forces occupied Brugge during World War I

1940 to 1944. German occupation during World War II

One of the biggest tourist attractions in Belgium, and is considered one of the best-preserved medieval cities in Europe.

Population (1991 estimate) 116,717.

The people of Brugge speak Dutch or Flemish. And although the language is Flemish the country shares many cultures. France is only a few hours to the south, Nederland a couple hours to the north, and Germany to the west. The architecture, and history is a combination of cultures, and at one time or another all 3 of those countries has occupied Brugge.

Brugge is often called the "Venice Of The North".


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Year 1240
Belfry or Bell Towers by Flemish

Year 1368

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Provincial Palace Gothic Style

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