Church of Our Lady (Kortrijk)

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Church of Our Lady
Church of Our Lady
Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekerk
ID59447-Kortrijk Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekerk-PM 21760.jpg
Location Kortrijk (Courtrai)
Country Belgium
Denomination Roman Catholic Church
History
Founded 1199
Architecture
Heritage designation Monument
Style Roman architecture

The Church of Our Lady in Kortrijk was built in 1199 established by count Baldwin I of Constantinople. The church is situated in the historic city centre of Kortrijk.

History[edit]

a Gargoyle on the outside

This church has a long construction history that began in the 13th century. The church played a mayor role in the history of the County of Flanders. The church was situated within the domain of the Counts of Flanders which was, except the part along the River Lys, fully walled. The church was part of the first castle of Kortrijk.

After the Battle of the Golden Spurs in 1302, which took place nearby on the Groeningekouter, the Flemish people hung 500 Golden Spurs of killed French knights on the ceiling of the church. Mercenaries took them away, in 1382 after the Battle of Roosebeke. They were replaced by replicas which can still be seen in the church.

In 1370, Count Louis II of Flanders had the Count’s chapel built to be a mausoleum for he himself and to honour the holy Catharina. The Chapel contains paintings of all the rulers of Flanders.

During the 15th century, the church was renovated. The castle wasn't restored and the domain was parcelled out (O.L.V.-straat, Konventstraat, Guido Gezellestraat, Kapittelstraat and Pieter de Cockelaerestraat). Only the church, the Broeltowers and the Artillery tower are the remains of the medieval castle.

painting by Anthony van Dyck

In 1797, French troops invaded the church and together with 12 convents, chapels and churches, the church was sold. Thanks to the concordate between Napoleon Bonaparte and Pope Pius VII, the church became the parish church of the parish of Our Lady.

Guido Gezelle was priest of this parish between 1872 and 1889.

Treasures[edit]

  • The interior of the church is in rich, Baroque style from the 17th century.
  • The church also contains other important treasures such as Anthony van Dyck’s Raising of the Cross.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 50°49′45″N 3°16′2″E / 50.82917°N 3.26722°E / 50.82917; 3.26722