Category Archives: Belgium

LoTR, Sect 2: Chap 17, Pt C (4/11) – “Trolls et Legendes” Festival – Concerts & the Sacred Key


Chapter 17: Part C

Saturday, 11 April 2009
Mons, Belgium

Realizing the key has been discovered, Sir Thomas Leaf sat to ponder the new revelation that the key was not an ancient rusting artifact, but rather a gift of spirit, warmth, youth, Faerie energy, and a re-awakening that the Irish and English faeries he met unlocked just by being in their presence. Their passion for life and frolick re-awakened that which he had lost over the last few years and once himself very famous for – healing the recent disconnection from his inner child, wild self, spirituality, artistic essence, and the traveller he is – bringing it back, and entering a new spiritual outlook. It has dawned that this year will bring new beginnings and new thoughts for him. He felt as if he was brought back to the land of Fae, to be lost in Faerieland once again as his epic mythos that his life is styled upon, that of the tale of “Oisin”, but more being the older Oisin after his wanderings with Saint Patrick who was separated and lost from Faerieland and his queen when he fell off his horse to assist the mortals in lifting the henge stone. His faerie queen is near. Life is to be lived, not to be withered away – to ward off that stagnation in the muck that humanity has created with materialism, politics, drama, compliance, and boring routines. The lock to his soul has been opened to kindle the inner child again, become bathed in the fountain of youth, and to be the wandering gypsy artist and adventurer that is the root of his soul. To be at one with his art / oracles / and visions. To write. To Dream. To Experience. Blessed by the Fae, Sir Thomas Leaf began the evening with music, dance, and revelry – dancing till his daughter Princess Brea dragged him home; knowing the quest of the sacred key had been complete. In celebration with some amazing new family, friends, kin, and connections enchanted beyond belief by one of his favorite bands – Qntal. Amazing. Blessed. Re-vived. New journeys and adventures to be summoned forth in the very near future … embracing the misty lands of Ireland, England, and Scotland … as well as the tropical molten lava lands of Hawaii … and down the road – Australia and Thailand. :: Fin ::

Continue reading LoTR, Sect 2: Chap 17, Pt C (4/11) – “Trolls et Legendes” Festival – Concerts & the Sacred Key

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Trolls et Legendes: Day 2 – Concerts – 4/11/09

Trolls et Legendes Festival 2009 – Day 2 – Concerts
Lotto Mons Expo * Avenue Thomas Edison – 7000 Mons – Belgium *

http://www.trolls-et-legendes.be/2009/index-en.htm

Knowing its a shame that I could only attend 2 of the 3 nights of concerts, I was in extreme excitement about tonight’s line-up with the chance to see my second favorite band next to Faun – which is Qntal. In total excitement. Amazing group of performers on the middle concert night of Trolls et Legendes – Opening with a fabulous show by Ceili Moss, followed by the spectacular Louisa John-Krol, with the enchanting Daemonia Nymphe, and a mind-shattering awesome finale by Qntal. Trolls et Legendes outdid themselves with this lineup, placing myself in utter ecstasy with ritualized musical bliss and theatrical display. I was saddened to know I would be missing sunday night’s lineup of Nehl Aelin, Cecile Corbel, Woodland, and Omnia. On a mythic quest during this trip for my own self, the line-up tonight pushed it to epic proportions in the re-vitalization of my soul that occured during these performances. Thank you especially Daemonia Nymphe and Qntal for the magic you caused. Outright Amazing. Thank you. Rating: 5 stars out of 5.

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Louisa John-Krol (Trolls et Legendes, Mons, Belgium) 2009

Louisa John-Krol (from Australia)
* Live Saturday, April 11th, 2009 – Trolls et Legendes Festival – Mons, Belgium *
www.louisajohnkrol.com – Myspace: www.myspace.com/louisajohnkrol

Faerie tales and mythic stories in poetic song in a faerie folk-Celtic influence and style in her presentation. Louisa John-Krol, came to Trolls et Legendes festival on the 11th of April from Australia, mesmerizing an audience with eager ears for her bardic flair. She is the main artist of the Prikosnovnie label in France, she is often described as a “musician fairy” to which I can only agree. She is influenced by Kate Bush, Dead Can Dance and Loreena McKennitt. Her performance this evening was spectacular and enchanting. Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5.

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Daemonia Nymphe at Trolls et Legends 2009

Daemonia Nymphe (from Greece)
* Live Saturday, April 11th, 2009 – Trolls et Legendes Festival – Mons, Belgium *
www.myspace.com/daemonianymphe
Mystical and Mythic masterpiece of Greek theater and music, this spectacular band brings one back to the times of Greece and deep ritual. Masked and ritualistic, the audience was noticeably transformed by these artists during the Trolls et Legendes festival in Mons Belgium on April 11th. Performing on period instruments, Daemonia Nymphe brings the unusual to the front. Spectacular and mesmerizing. Thank you. Rating: 5 stars out of 5.

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Qntal at Trolls et Legends (Mons, Belgium) 2009

Qntal (from Germany)
* Live Saturday, April 11th, 2009 – Trolls et Legendes Festival – Mons, Belgium *
www.qntal.dewww.qntal.fr
– Myspace: www.myspace.com/qntal
My second favorite band of all time, these pioneers of medieval merged with electronic music places me in another world everytime i have the pleasure to hear them. Their music take you back to the XII-XIIIth centuries. In fact, they use traditional instruments and female voices singing texts of those particular centuries. Qntal was founded in 1991 and have taken the world into awe and bliss. Their performance at Trolls et Legendes in Mons, Belgium was mind-shattering. Thank you. Rating: 5 stars out of 5.

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Woodland

Woodland
Performing unplugged at Trolls et Legendes Festival in Mons, Belgium: 4/11/09
Eugene, Oregon
http://www.woodlandmusic.net/
Having already booked my trip to Europe without knowing about the Trolls et Legendes festival, I was pretty distraught that I would be missing the performance of Woodland on sunday since I had to leave the festival the night prior to their scheduled magic. But I was blessed with an unplugged performance of this amazing group as they played in the marketplace at Trolls et Legendes in Belgium on Saturday afternoon. While the festival didn’t equipt the band with sound equipment, and it was a bit hard to hear them over the festival noises, chatter, and clatter … standing closer to the stage, their magic overwhelmingly drowned out the distracting noises. Having been privileged to see Woodland on many other occasions at their home festival of Faerieworlds in Eugene, Oregon – I know the enchantment they weave. To experience them even with this unplanned jam in the city of Mons, Belgium was awe-inspiring to say the least. Woodland is a enchanting faerie band rooted from the heartland of Oregon in the United States bringing forth folklore, mythology, and Celtic rhythms in a magical spell. Their performances are like a magical ritual, bringing together childhood folk stories with the epic myth of the woodlands. Weaved together with the poetic harmonies of Emilio and Kelly Miller-Lopez, Kimmy Smith, Donald Brodsky, and Jarrod Kaplan – the mystical presence of the group not only mesmerizes their fans with music, poetry, and the inspiring art of Brian Froud, video, and Festivity – but also key organizing of fabulous and enchanting festivals like Faerieworlds, Faeriecon, and the Faerie Balls. Blessed with the harp, flutes, percussion, song, harmony, guitar, the fiddle, electric instruments, bass, didgeridoo, and theatrics – this band is phenomenal. Always a pleasure to be in their presence. Thank you for all that you do! Rating: 5 stars out of 5.

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Lady of the Rhine, Sect 2: Chapter 17, Part B (4/11) – “Trolls et Legendes” Festival – Market, Woodland, Faeries


Chapter 17: Part B

Saturday, 11 April 2009
Mons, Belgium

“Closer to the key, I can feel it …” Sir Thomas Leaf pondered. “It is the day for the revelations to be revealed.” Difficulties making conversation or getting around without knowing French was pretty prevelant for the duo, and it frustrated Princess Brea. Sir Thomas Leaf made poor half-ass attempts at utilizing his 6 years of schooling in French to get around, but failed horribly. The dialects were quite different than the French he had learned in school. Some intriguing films drew Leaf into the theater – but not being Faerie or “fantasy” at all, but rather, macabre sick-n-twisted flicks in French. That was entertaining but not what he had expected. The vendors and crafts-beings were amazing and lured the already-broke Leaf into purchasing some art for his collection at home. Fantastical creatures, wizards, faeries, monsters, trolls, orcs, centaurs, and lizard people crept, crawled, hymned, hawed, and enchanted those around them as they weaved around the crowds. Crepes, festival food, and Belgium beer greeted many in the dining hall. A stunning Irish Faerie captivated the curiousity of Sir Thomas Leaf – alluring him to the British “Fae” magazine booth. (He’s always wanted to check out this magazine, but had not seen it in physical form, as well as the American “Faeries” magazine as well, which future investment shall be made into when the time is right. The Fae magazine he had always wanted to get and delve into, and a charming Faerie Moe to promote the already sold zine, he excitingly purchased the full set of 6 issues. As he became friends with the mesmerizing Irish charm, he returned later to the booth to meet a familiar kindred spirit – a captivating British Faerie named Zoe, who recognized him from being an online friend. Instant deep connections were created as Sir Thomas Leaf realized these kindred spirits were faerie family, and were soon to be the ones to reveal the sacred key of which this quest was set out to discover. From the mystical lands of Britain and Ireland, the mythos is near realization. A bounce around, Sir Thomas Leaf was also pleased that his beloved Faerie band “Woodland” from Oregon, that he had come to love from seeing them at “Faerieworlds” was doing an un-expected un-plugged jam session performance so that he was blessed with the ability to see them on this trip, making the day ever more so magical as he was prior disappointed he’d be missing them since the adventurers had to leave that night after Qnthal. Alas, Woodland was scheduled for a sunday performance. But he did not have to miss their charm. Magic in the song, inspiration from the tunes. The European quest coming to fruition. [to be continued …]


Photo by Zoe Nicholls

Continue reading Lady of the Rhine, Sect 2: Chapter 17, Part B (4/11) – “Trolls et Legendes” Festival – Market, Woodland, Faeries

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Trolls et Legendes: Day 2 – The Fair


Trolls et Legendes vendors
photo by Zoe Nicholls

Trolls et Legendes Festival 2009 – Day 2 – the Market
Lotto Mons Expo * Avenue Thomas Edison – 7000 Mons – Belgium * http://www.trolls-et-legendes.be/2009/index-en.htm
Wandering around the vendor side of the the Festival, I was amazed by the incredible and amazing array of artwork presented. Paintings, books, crafts, homemade goodies, costumes, elven ears, masks, jewelry, leather works, figurines, statues, archery, games, and comics. Pretty fantastic fair. I think Trolls et Legendes did a fabulous job with their vendor market. There was also a gaming and role-playing game section, which since it’s not all my thing, didn’t wander through that area much – but it seemed well done as well. Costumed fantastical creatures, wizards, warriors, orcs, elves, and faeries wandered around the market with song, dance, smirks, quirks, and playfulness. My favorites was the didgeridoo playing creature on a leash, the centaur, the Troll or Orc, the elven bard, and some of the faeries in the mix. Top job with the theatrical! After not being impressed with the first night, the fact that programmes were not easily available, and some dynamics of the festival that were poorly organized – this part of the festival brought hope and fulfillment for me during the day. I was quite pleased. The food services, still not the top of my list with their silly little token plastic coins you had to use to purchase those items with were ridiculous, but I thought the crepes were good. Some of the artists and writers were amazing. I found meeting them and being enlightened by their art was very worthwhile. The S.C.A.-like camp in the back, outdoors was very intriguing, but not very welcoming. It had its own charm. However, I’m guessing I’m not much of a fan of Faerie or fantasy festivals to take place in convention centers. The writers and illustrators were also signing books and displaying their literature/art with a full list found at http://www.trolls-et-legendes.be/2009/litterature-en.htm. Market: Rating 4 stars out of 5.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_9brQBcGvc

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Lady of the Rhine, Sect 2: Chapter 17, Part A (4/11) – Legos, “Trolls et Legendes” festival … Day 2: The Fair, Artists

Part A


figures by Brian & Wendy Froud

Saturday, 11 April 2009
Mons, Belgium

Today is the revelation of the key. Such as sacred day indeed. The adventurers awoke at the hostel, packed up their gear, and headed down for a decent breakfast. It was quite obvious many other Trolls-et-Legendes Festival-goers were there, as one could tell from their dress. Checking out and off to the rental carriage for a shuttle over to the Lotto Mons Expo center. With time to spare as the duo arrived early, getting a close parking space, they wandered over to the Grand Place Mall, awaiting stores to open, as they gazed upon the Lego exhibits. Pretty cool stuff. They wandered into a French version of a Target for Belgium chocolates, french comics, books, and souvenirs. Then over to the festival center to await in line for the doors to open to “Trolls et Legendes”. The festival end was much more exciting, with vendors galore, art, crafts, costumes, books, and writers … faeries, monsters, elves, and orcs, wandering about in curious twitches and stances. Meeting Brian and Wendy Froud again (originally met at Faerieworlds) – with much admiration of their artwork. Galleries showcased some incredible faerie art.

Continue reading Lady of the Rhine, Sect 2: Chapter 17, Part A (4/11) – Legos, “Trolls et Legendes” festival … Day 2: The Fair, Artists

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Trolls et Legendes Festival 2009 – Day 2 – Art Galleries

Trolls et Legendes Festival 2009 – Day 2 – Art Galleries
Lotto Mons Expo * Avenue Thomas Edison – 7000 Mons – Belgium * http://www.trolls-et-legendes.be/2009/index-en.htm
Day two of the infamous Trolls et Legendes festival at the Mons Expo center … opening up to some incredible art galleries by world reknown faerie artists like Brian and Wendy Froud as well as lesser known local artists. The artwork was phenomenal and awe inspiring creations that made me want to rush home to paint. The visionaries who created these masterpieces were extroadinary as was well defined in their artwork. Magical. Exotic. Fantastical. Some of the incorporation of natural objects with painting or photography was innovative. Presented was a gallery of choice pieces from Wendy and Brian Froud, Sabine Adlade, Laura David, Epie, Martine Fassier, Valrie Frances, Vronik Gendarme, Sandrine Gestin, Lady Ghostington, Joot, Ccile Lensen, Laurence Peguy, and others. Galleries: Rating 5 stars out of 5.
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Lego Expo 30 ans – Mons/Grand Pres

Lego Expo 30 ans – Mons/Grand Pres
Place des Grandes Pres * 1 – Mons – Belgique – + 32(0) 65 31 27 18 * http://www.lesgrandspres.be/
Hosted in a large shopping mall just off from the historic town center was the Lego Expo within the wings of the mall. Some enormous lego statues and fabulous artistic exhibits were presented. Very creative. Intriguing and inspiring. Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5. Continue reading Lego Expo 30 ans – Mons/Grand Pres

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Auberge du Beffroi Hostelling International Hostel (Mons, Belgium)

Mons – Auberge du Beffroi Hostelling International Hostel
Rampe du Chteau 2 * 7000 Mons * Belgium *
Tel. +32-65-875570 * Fax. +32-65-875571 * mons@laj.be

http://www.hihostels.com/dba/hostel007010.en.htm?linkid=985020
A fabulous hostel hidden away by the historic cathedral, nestled within its own castle-like structure. In the heart of the historic centre of the capital of the province of Hainaut, at the foot of the belfry and just down from Grand-Place. Several stories of rooms, spacious, with own showers and toilettes. The hostel partners with quite a few concerts and the traditional “Doudou” festival housing many young guests from the venues. The staff is friendly and the complimentary breakfast is quite satisfactory. Rating: 5 stars out of 5.

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Lady of the Rhine, Sect 2: Chapter 16, Part B (4/10) – “Trolls et Legendes” festival … Day 1

Part B


Trolls et Legendes

Friday, 10 April 2009
Mons, Belgium

Heading down to the Central Station, and getting a little turned around doing it, the adventurers finally found the info booth, and in half-english, half-french was directed round-a-bout to where they needed to find the C bus. Of course, none of the signs listed a “C” bus so they were quite confused as where to go. Just as frustration began to set in, a pan-like spirit came tromping through the square – harem pants and all – and obviously enroute to the Trolls et Legendes festival. He spoke some decent English and guided us to follow him. Sir Thomas Leaf, while his french is poor, could make out most conversations even though he lacked the confidence in his own usage of the language. He made out that some woman was making fun of the pan-like spirit’s harem pants saying they’d look better on her – Leaf doubted that much. Once at the Lotto Mons Expo center. Picking up tickets from the booth, they got into the lineup in the nick of time as it began to wrap around the block. Once in they stood in numerous lines to get the tickets, to get in, to get their troll coins, to get their drinks, and to get some food. Some fabulous bands went on with some cute Lord of the Ring parodie flicks (all in French). After a few shows, the fatigued travellers sought to find their way back to the hostel. At the bus stop they met some fellow travellers, originally from Russia, who spoke good English and was able to help guide them back to the Central Station. As the four of them realized that they missed the last bus, they all went for a hike roughly two miles away to get back to the station. Good times …. Turning in pretty much as they returned, the adventurers rested up for a long day tomorrow.

Continue reading Lady of the Rhine, Sect 2: Chapter 16, Part B (4/10) – “Trolls et Legendes” festival … Day 1

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Naheulbeuk Night: Trolls et Legendes Festival in Mons, Belgium 4/10/09

Naheulbeuk Night
Trolls et Legendes Festival, Night 1, 4/10/2009 – Lotto Mons Expo Center, Mons, Belgium
Le Donjon de Naheulbeuk (France) presented the night with a role-playing parody that began originally as an audio saga. Apparently the group became immensely popular and diversified into a band, a series of comic books, novels, and soon a TV series. The first night of Trolls et Legendes presented concerts of Naheulbeuk and two side projects, Belyscendre and Maigh Tuireadh, as well as the screening of previously never released episodes of the TV series by the Mortal Fight Circus. All of the screenings and the musical talents were spectacular and thoroughly enjoyed. Humorous, full of frolick and joy, and at points mesmerizing … the stage captivated the audiences and sent them into fellowship, song, and dance. You can view the comics, animations, novels, TV clips, and musical talents at the following sites: http://www.penofchaos.com/warham/donjon-groupe.htm, http://www.myspace.com/maightuireadh, http://www.belyscendre.com/. The performances were very well done. Rating: 4 stars out of 5.

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Trolls et Legendes Festival – Day 1 – 4/10/09 (Mons, Belgium) – Naheulbeuk


Trolls et Legendes – Day 1

Trolls et Legendes Festival 2009 – Day 1
Lotto Mons Expo * Avenue Thomas Edison – 7000 Mons – Belgium * http://www.trolls-et-legendes.be/2009/index-en.htm
Day one of the infamous Trolls et Legendes festival at the Mons Expo center … evening only as they were to present some films and concerts from 6 pm until midnight. The bulk of the festival as we could peak through the black papered covered glass doors looked like the market and fairgrounds in the exposition center were nicely done. The theme of the evening however was “standing in lines”. We stood in line for the tickets, then we stood in lines to get in the doors, we stood in lines to use the toilette – which had a troll attached to it as do many toilettes in Europe where you had to pay .20 Euro to use it, then had to stand in line to convert our Euros over to these silly little plastic coins for which you could use to buy Troll Beer, Wine, drinks, and food. (CDs, t-shirts, and vendor stuff you used Euros). Then after getting the coins, you had to stand in line for beverages. If you wanted food, you had to stand in a separate line for that. So that was a downer for the festival’s opening night, plus the concert space was poorly organized other than a nice stage for the kids to stand and sit on so they could see. Once the performances came on however, much of these silly distractions didn’t seem to matter as some humorous parody films were presented and some good acts. The doors opened at 6:00 with projections beginning at 6:30, and at 7:00 the Maigh Tuireadh played. Another series of projections followed each act, at 8:15 – Belyscendre came on and Naheulbeuk ending the night. Group dances, festive frolick, and the wave were done by the audiences. The musical talents definitely got a 4 star, the projections a 3 star mainly because the screens were way too small, and the festival organization itself for the first night was a meager 2 star because of the lack of organization, the numerous lines, the silly coins, and the fact they didn’t hand out any programmes. We had to ask for them through the middle of the evening just so we could figure on who was going on next. Statistics stated over 4,000 attendees the first night. Overall first night 4/10/09: 2.5 stars out of 5. Continue reading Trolls et Legendes Festival – Day 1 – 4/10/09 (Mons, Belgium) – Naheulbeuk

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Lady of the Rhine, Sect 2: Chapter 16, Part A (4/10) -Leaving Amsterdam for Mons, Belgium to the “Trolls et Legendes” festival …

Part A


Hunting for the hostel in Mons

Friday, 10 April 2009
Amsterdam, The Netherlands – Mons, Belgium

The adventurers had a pretty interesting night partying in Amsterdam with the pub crawl. Awaking early with a hangover was not the best start to the day that Sir Thomas Leaf could have. Onwards to check out from the Zeesburg hostel after a good night rest. Princess Breanna took advantage of the free breakfast and chatting with friends before their departure, Sir Thomas Leaf was certainly too groggy and needed to catch up on winks. A short bus ride from the hostel to the Zeesburg park-n-ride, the party was soon into their rental auto-carriage and off on the road to Belgium – the land of chocolate and fries. The roads getting out of Amsterdam were pretty congested and a headache, but once into Belgium, the traffic alleviated somewhat. It was afterall Easter weekend and since European’s are big on travel and vacations, one would be sure to run into crowds hitting the roads for their Easter vacation plans. The party drove through Brussels, but didn’t stop, as they wanted to get to Mons to find their hostel and the festival center so they could see the opening acts at http://www.trolls-et-legendes.be/. Sir Thomas Leaf has 6 years of French under his belt so was quite excited to try it out – unfortunately he sucks at comprehension and pronunciation, so it was no better that he knew French as he was still stuck with English. It however was much easier for him to manage in Belgium than Germany and other countries he felt. The roads in the historic section of Mons were an absolute nightmare. Cobbled roads all one way, roads the GPS was saying existed either didn’t or were blocked off, the frustrated duo, arguing over directions, finally two hours of driving around in circles parked and hoofed it on foot dragging their luggage. They weren’t too far off as the looming castle of a hostel was right in front of them the whole time, it was just shut off from driving to it because of road constructions and restorations. Checking in, they were blessed with their own private room, as the apparently “full” hostel on the web, wasn’t so full in person. One could spot a few of the festival goers in their outfits that were staying at the hostel as well. Unfortunately, the duo really struggled getting around because no one knew English and with Sir Thomas Leaf’s poor french, it was a struggle finding out where to go. The woman at the hostel desk knew decent English so was able to guide them to the Central station so they could catch a bus to the festival center.

Continue reading Lady of the Rhine, Sect 2: Chapter 16, Part A (4/10) -Leaving Amsterdam for Mons, Belgium to the “Trolls et Legendes” festival …

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Mons, Belgium

Mons, Belgium
Population [2006] is 91,221 (47.78% male / 52.22% female)
Mons is a city and municipality located in the Belgian province of Hainaut and is considered a Walloon city (French). At Spiennes some of the best flint tools in Europe were found dating from the Neolithic period and were the first signs of activity in the region. 1st century BC, Julius Caesar entered the region and settled by the the Nervii the settlement of Castrilocus consisting of a castrum where the name was derived. The name was later changed into Montes for the hills upon which the castrum was built. 7th century – Saint Ghislain and his two disciples built an oratory/chapel dedicated to Saints Peter and paul near the Mons hill. 12th century, Baldwin IV, the Count of Hainaut fortified the city – causing the population to grow fast, trade to flourish, and several commercial buildings, town halls, and churches constructed near the Grand’Place. 13th century saw a population of 4,700; by end of the 15th century grew to 8,900. 1515 Charles V took an oath here as Count of Hainaut. Beginning in 1572 various occupations began – Protestant takeover by Louis of Nassau, the St. Bartholomew’s Day massacre murder of de Coligny, the Duke of Alba took control in that September for the Catholics. The city was laid to ruin and many of its inhabitants were arrested. 1580-1584 Mons was the capital of the Southern Netherlands. Continue reading Mons, Belgium

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Belgium

Belgium
2008 estimated population: 10,666,866. with a area of roughly 11,787 square miles (30,528 km2)
The Kingdom of Belgium is the founding member of the European Union and the host of its headquarters, and is a small northwestern European country that straddles the cultural boundary between Germanic and Latin Europe. “Belgium” is derived from “Gallia Belgica” – a Roman province in northwestern Gaul that was inhabited by the Belgae, a blend of Celtic and Germanic peoples. Belgium hosts two main linguistic groups, the Flemings and the French, with a very minute group of German speakers. It is also the host country to many major international organizations including NATO and the OECD. The two largest regions are the Dutch-speaking region of Flanders in the north that hosts 59% of the population, and the French speaking southern region of Wallonia which is populated by 31%. The Capital region is Brussels, though bilingual, is mostly French speaking. Belgium’s linguistic diversity and related political/cultural conflicts are reflected in their complex system of government. Belgium, Netherlands, and Luxembourg were all known as the Low Countries that were once a larger landmass than the current Benelux (Be=Belgium, NE=Netherlands, LUX=Luxembourg) group of states. Belgium prospered greatly from the end of the Middle Ages to the 17th century with commerce and culture. Continue reading Belgium

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