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"De Grote Markt & Brabo" Grote Markt Tip by yashiko

Grote Markt, Antwerp: 36 reviews and 74 photos

by yashiko
  • Brabo - Antwerp
    by yashiko
  • The guildhouses - Antwerp
      The guildhouses
    by yashiko
  • Detail of the Brabostatue - Antwerp
      Detail of the Brabostatue
    by yashiko
  • Cityhall - Antwerp
    by yashiko
  • Close-up of the guildhouses - Antwerp
      Close-up of the guildhouses
    by yashiko

The 'Grote markt' is still the heart of the old city. It is beautifully surrounded by the Town Hall and the so-called houses of the Guilds or corporations. In the background the tower of Our Lady's Cathedral completes the magnificent view.
The houses of the Guilds are unfortunately not the original ones. A large part of the Grote Markt burned down in 1576. Most of the houses were rebuilt afterwards in Flemish Renaissance style. In the 19th century the houses were again renovated. The house number 7 is one of the most beautiful. It was the house of the guild of Archers and is crowned by the statue of St. George.

In the middle of the 'Grote Markt' stands the Brabo fountain. The statue was made by sculptor Jef Lambeaux in 1887. According to a legend, a terrible giant, called Druoon Antigoon, lived on the banks of the river Scheldt in ancient times. Whenever sailors on the Scheldt river refused to pay toll to the giant, he punished them by cutting off their hand. A Roman soldier, Silvius Brabo, managed to kill the giant. Brabo cut off the hand of the giant and threw the hand away in the river.
Hence the name of the city : hand ( Engl.: hand) -werpen (Engl.: to throw). A nice legend, but untrue. Nevertheless, the 'hand' is the symbol of Antwerp.There are hands in the town flag. Also there are several sweets in the form of a hand (cookies, chocolates). In any case, without the Brabo fountain, the Grote Markt would not be complete.

Address: Grote Markt
Directions: It's the center of town not to far away from the river Schelde.
Phone: +32 3 232.01.03

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated May 11, 2006
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