The Emerald Tablets are one of the greatest enigmas of archaeology. The Castle of the Counts also hosts all kinds of cultural activities, events and … At present Gravensteen Castle can be visited for a fee. Recommended! There’s plenty to enjoy even today! The historic region of Flanders in Belgium is famous for its many medieval monuments and buildings. Inspect the iron collars, neck restraints and thumbscrews of the museum’s fascinating but grisly collection. We’re the only Pop Archaeology site combining scientific research with out-of-the-box perspectives. It is open daily except on December 24, 25, 31 and January 1. In the 9 th century AD, Baldwin II built a wooden fortress on the site of the current castle, constructed to defend the area from the Vikings. When the Counts moved to a new residence in the late 14 th century, the castle remained an important military site and was also used as a prison by the Council of Flanders. At Ancient Origins, we believe that one of the most important fields of knowledge we can pursue as human beings is our beginnings. Mysterious Cocaine Mummies: Do They Prove Ancient Voyages Between Egypt and Americas? Some were stretched on the rack and had water poured down their throats via a funnel until they swelled. Water and rack in the torture museum in the Castle of the Counts, Ghent, Belgium ( CC by SA 2.0 ). Prisoners were interrogated in the fortress and many of them were tortured. Mr. Vervoordt used to open his castle to the public two times a year. Gravensteen © Simon Montgomery As the seat of the Council of Flanders the castle was used as a courthouse and a prison from the fourteenth to the eighteenth centuries, and the accused were held in the dungeons there before or during their trials. Do you think that today’s mad-dash grab for the hottest toys is just a phenomenon of modern times? Also known as the Castle of the Counts, today this historical building is a tourist attraction, wedding venue and location for a variety of cultural activities. Today, there is a weapon museum here, and the castle is one of the most popular tourist attractions The former courtroom features the collection of judicial objects. Thoth’s Enigmatic Emerald Tablets May Provide the Answer, White Skin Developed in Europe Only As Recently as 8,000 Years Ago Say Anthropologists, Nilometers: Ancient Egypt’s Ingenious Invention Used Until Modern Times, The Pyramid Complex and the Hopi: Creation Myth Sheds Light on Building Plan. The name means "castle of the count" in Dutch. Oxford University Press, Available at: https://books.google.ie/books?hl=en&lr=&id=QvSovOY_VV0C&oi=fnd&pg=PR5&dq=gravensteen+castle++history+of+flanders&ots=UHcq40cGir&sig=kruo9u0GowLwYk9gLNbEImF2RtM&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=gravensteen%20castle%20%20history%20of%20flanders&f=false>, Laleman, M. C. (2013). The Gravensteen is a castle in Ghent originating from the Middle Ages. Later the defensive wall and the wall tower were rebuilt in stone and a stone gate tower was added. The Council had its seat in the castle until 1778, when it was sold to civilians. Raised Celtic Settlement May Be Aftermath of Boudica’s Rebellion, Egyptian Hippos: Ancient Symbol of Protection, Rebirth And Hunting, Revealing The Hellenistic Origins Of Jaffa, The Holiest Port, Grasshopper Diet Caused Lethal Constipation 1,000 Years Ago, Surprise Discovery of a Headless 'Buddha' Statue Beneath Chinese Apartments, 7.2 million-Year-Old Pre-Human Fossil Suggests Mankind Arose in Europe NOT Africa, Sky Burial: Tibet’s Ancient Tradition for Honoring the Dead, Ancient Anomalous Human Skeletons: Humanity Could be Much Older Than We Think, Where are Ashkenazi Jews from? Top image: Gravensteen Castle in Ghent, Belgium           Source: Kurt De Bruyn / Adobe Stock, De Vries, A. Philip of Alsace built today’s castle from 1180 to 1200. Flanders: a cultural history . This, in turn, was used to predict the fortunes of the annual harvest, the taxes to be imposed (which determined the revenues of the state), as well as the prices of foodstuffs. The Gravensteen Castle was first built by Count Philip of Alsace in 1180, long before Belgium was a country. In recent decades it was again restored twice. The former chapel in Castle Gravensteen ( bbsferrari / Adobe Stock). Today, this stone monolith features plenty of space to walk around, with a fascinating torture museum revealing terrifying devices actually used, including a guillotine. Castles and fortified cities of Medieval Europe: an illustrated history . When I visited I was stunned by the beautiful interiors in the castle, really a must-see. The Gravensteen functioned as the center of the Count's power during the early Middle-Ages. In the past as in the present, where we find children, we find toys, as shown by the fascinating examples of ancient toys that still charm our kids today, A new analysis of two 7.2 million-year-old fossils belonging to a hominin species nicknamed “El Graeco” from Mediterranean Europe, suggests that mankind emerged in Europe and not in Africa. Gravensteen’s historical highlight is its dungeon and torture chamber. During the early 19 th century, the castle was turned into a cotton mill, but by the late 19 th century, Gravensteen was dilapidated and scheduled for demolition. Only the old entrance gate served as a reminder of its medieval past. When the city of Ghent took over Gravensteen it initially became the municipal mint. Medieval and Modern Matters, 4, 109-118, Available at:   https://www.brepolsonline.net/doi/abs/10.1484/J.MMM.5.109772, Lepage, J. D. G. (2010). In 1949 the castle was shortly occupied by protesting local students. This massive rectangular structure was once the private residence of the Count of Flanders. Source In the early 19th century, the castle was used as a prison, a courthouse, and, at … At present this castle residence can not be visited. The Gravensteen Castle was built during the period of Crusades to serve as a look out for the entire city and was also the seat of power from where the Count used to rule. The castle is located in the heart of Ghent. The castle stayed the administrative center of the county. Ghent (East Flanders, Belgium) in the Discussion about Early Towns and Artisan Production . Gravensteen Katie McKeown on Flickr (Creative Commons) Constructed over the site of a much weaker looking wooden castle by a pompous count, the … The castle served as the seat of the Counts of Flanders until they abandoned it in the 14th century. Paleo rock art from around the world ranges in style, method, and age, and includes cave paintings, petroglyphs, pictographs, polished and engraved stones such as effigies, stone sculptures, and portable ceremonial objects. Gravensteen Castle is located on the edge of Ghent’s Old City, about 30 miles west of Brussels. To satisfy those with a more gory turn-of-mind, but also to give voice to the castle’s violent history, Gravensteen houses a collection of torture instruments actually used through the ages. Between the 14th and 18th centuries, the castle grounds were used for the torture, judgment and execution of prisoners. The Gravensteen is a castle in Ghent originating from the Middle Ages. It is his castle that we see today. When the Counts moved to a new residence in the late 14 th century, the castle remained an important military site and was also used as a prison by the Council of Flanders. The Counts of Flanders dominated the region for most of the Middle Ages . Info page teasers. As a result, since 1807, the main tower of the castle was used as a … It was restored over 1893–1903 and is now a museum and a major landmark in the city. The Man Who Stopped a Desert Using Ancient Farming, Han Purple: A 2,800-year-old artificial pigment that quantum physicists are trying to understand. 3 Problems to Remember When Trying to Find Atlantis, Modern Comfort and Traditional Opulence, The Perfect Combination in Peleș Castle, Medieval Torture: The Terrifying Threat of Twisting off Limbs and Burning Flesh, Skeletons in the Closet: Walls of Bones Discovered Beneath Cathedral, https://www.youtube.com/embed/T0XTpK33i_s", https://books.google.ie/books?hl=en&lr=&id=QvSovOY_VV0C&oi=fnd&pg=PR5&dq=gravensteen+castle++history+of+flanders&ots=UHcq40cGir&sig=kruo9u0GowLwYk9gLNbEImF2RtM&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=gravensteen%20castle%20%20history%20of%20flanders&f=false, https://www.brepolsonline.net/doi/abs/10.1484/J.MMM.5.109772, https://books.google.ie/books?hl=en&lr=&id=CXCeCQAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PP1&dq=gravensteen+castle++history+of+flanders&ots=sNXSl1ZaXg&sig=dYkMcOaj2zPZ7ihdp85eLOrsGB0&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=gravensteen%20castle%20%20history%20of%20flanders&f=false. In c. 1180, the castle burned down, presumably by accident. By bringing together top experts and authors, this archaeology website explores lost civilizations, examines sacred writings, tours ancient places, investigates ancient discoveries and questions mysterious happenings. A great castle in a great city. Gravensteen Castle was a terrific place to visit. Thankfully the local municipality chose to restore the medieval fortress authentically under the direction of the architect Joseph de Waele. All areas are accessible and the views from the walls are not to be missed. The mighty Gravensteen Castle in the center of Ghent is one of the largest moated castles in Europe. In later centuries parts of the moat silted up and houses were built against the outer castle walls, hiding the castle from view until around 1900. Arnulf I (918–965), Count of Flanders, was the first to fortify this place, building a medieval bastion on this high sand dune, naturally protected by the river Leie and its marshy banks. These relics date back to an era when the region was a major economic and political center under the Counts of Flanders. Their Origins May Surprise You, The origins of human beings according to ancient Sumerian texts, Petroglyphic Features of Portable Rock Art, The Northern Mysteries Current: Futhark and Mystery Schools of the Viking Age, Floki and the Viking Discovery of Iceland. The gatehouse is beautifully preserved, as are the walls’ ramparts which are up to 60 feet high (20 m) with many oval battlements and towers. McFarland, Available at: https://books.google.ie/books?hl=en&lr=&id=CXCeCQAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PP1&dq=gravensteen+castle++history+of+flanders&ots=sNXSl1ZaXg&sig=dYkMcOaj2zPZ7ihdp85eLOrsGB0&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=gravensteen%20castle%20%20history%20of%20flanders&f=false, My name is Edward Whelan and I am from Limerick in the Republic of Ireland. An administrator was put into place to take care of the daily routines. Messiah on Temple Mount: Are We Nearing the End of Time? He built the almost 30 meters high keep, the barbican in front of the gate tower and the defensive wall with its 24 protruding turrets. In 1949 students stormed the castle and pelted the authorities with rotten fruit in protest of a new tax on beer. The Knights of Blanik Mountain Are Ready to Face the Darkest Hour, The Powerful Symbol of the Swastika and its 12,000 Year History, The notorious and much feared ancient order of Hashshashins. The survivor of destruction today recalls the significance that Ghent had for centuries. Who Really Built the Pyramids of Giza? At the heart of the fortress is the keep with its gruesome donjon. Is this a 300 million-year-old screw or just a fossilized sea creature? . The name means 'castle of the counts' in Dutch. In 1353, the castle was used as the Ghent mint. The Gravensteen is the Dutch name for the 'castle of the count'. Used for centuries as a residence for the Counts of Flanders, the castle was later used as a prison (complete with torture chambers), a courthouse, and a … The most popular part of the castle is the Torture Museum , where small children and those with a weak stomach are not encouraged to visit. In 1180, Count Philip I had the castle again completely rebuilt. The current castle was built in 1180 and throughout the centuries served many purposes such as a court, a prison, a home for royalty and even as a cotton factory. A fee is charged to enter the castle where there are a great many exhibitions and several fun things to do. Since 1407, in the castle were located County Superior Court, the Council of Flanders, as well as a prison. Houses were built against the walls and even on the courtyard and the stones of the walls were used to erect other buildings. Dinner Invitations for Famous People from the Past, Harvard Scientists Say That There May Be An Ancient Earth Inside Earth, New Tech Reveals Origin Of Egyptian Mummies’ Skin Color. (2007). One of the more majestic castles in Belgium is The Gravensteen (which in Dutch means the “Castle of the Counts”). Gravensteen is a Castle in Ghent, Belgium. Around 879 AD it was apparently taken by the Vikings as they used it as a base for their raids in the area. Today, this restored fortress is one of the most famous historic sites in all the region. 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