History of Brussels

Brief history of Brussels summarized

A brief review of the summarized history of Brussels, the capital of Belgium.

The beginnings of Brussels

Brussels was a place of settlement since prehistory, but became a notable settlement after Saint Gery built a chapel on the banks of the River Senne in 695, now called Place Saint Gery.

The city of Brussels was officially founded in 979 by Charles, Duke of Lower Lotharingia, who established the first charter of the city of Brussels. Since then, Brussels has seen many rulers, renaissances and revolutions.

Middle Ages (979 – 1500)

After the beginning of his letter, Brussels quickly went from being a city to becoming a city. It was the center of trade between the cities of Bruges, Ghent and Cologne, where the Senne River intersected the economic route that stretched from east to west of the country.

The city’s first set of walls were completed in the 11th century and, with increased protection, precipitated its population growth. Shortly after, a second wall was built to protect the citizens and industry that spilled out of the walls.

Starting from the 12th century, Brussels became an important city under the administration of the Duke of Brabant. The Duke made Brussels the capital of the Duchy of Brabant for several centuries, the twelfth, thirteenth and fourteenth.

In the midst of economic development, Brussels exported luxury items such as fabrics and tapestries to Paris and Venice. It was the home of artists such as Rogier van der Weyden, whose paintings flourished and became the cartoon background for many tapestries woven from the finest silk and exported across Europe to decorate the homes of royalty and aristocrats.

The tapestries can still be seen in European museums such as the Louvre. The Town Hall and the King’s House rose above the Old City on the Grand-Place in the 15th century; these two opposing buildings still face each other in today’s Grand-Place.

Renaissance and Revolution (1500 – 1830)

The period after the fifteenth century was marked by rebellions and uprisings. At the end of the 15th century, Brussels temporarily fell out of favor and the title of capital after an uprising against Emperor Maximilian I. R

it regained its status after the reign of Charles V between 1519 and 1559. Governed by the Calvinists in the mid-16th century and then by Archduke Albert I (1598-1633), the city had grown to a population of 50,000 by the mid-16th century. century XVI.

In 1695, the bombardment of Brussels by King Louis XIV of France left the Grand-Place in ruins and thousands of buildings throughout the city were destroyed. The reconstruction of Brussels was carried out by various guilds of craftsmen, who left their historical mark with the construction of the town halls that gave the Grand-Place a closed rectangular shape.

For the rest of the 18th century, Brussels was likewise the center of economic development, occupation, and revolt. French troops took over again from 1746-48, the Brabant Revolt took place between 1788 and 1790 and Brussels was taken over again during the Napoleonic era.

The current capital of Brussels was established after the United Kingdom of the Netherlands (1815-1830) ended in 1830 with independence from Belgium.

Modern history (1830 – present)

Belgium’s last major revolt was in 1830, when it protested against King William of the Netherlands for independence. King Leopold I, Queen Victoria’s uncle, became the first King of the Kingdom of Belgium on July 21, 1831.

The city walls were torn down during this period (1810-1840) and replaced by a set of pentagon-shaped boulevards following the original layout of the Old Town of Brussels, called the Inner Ring Road.

The current circular metro line runs around this same ring road. Rapid population growth followed and by 1846 Brussels had 123,000 inhabitants.

The 20th century was a period of war and development. After World War I and World War II, Germany occupied Brussels both times, Brussels became part of the Brussels Pact (or Treaty of Brussels) in 1948, which led to the start of Western European defense cooperation.

At present, the European Union, an economic cooperation, continues to develop. In the sixties the first metro lines were built to relieve urban congestion; in the 1970s and 1980s, a new political reform created the Brussels Capital Region, expanding the city of Brussels into an urban agglomeration with a population of just over a million.

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