Grote of Sint-Jacobskerk (The Hague)

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Grote of Sint-Jacobuskerk
Grote of Sint-Jacobuskerk
Coordinates: 52°04′38″N 4°18′26″E / 52.07722°N 4.30722°E / 52.07722; 4.30722
Location The Hague, South Holland
Country Netherlands
Status Church
Architectural type Church
Style Gothic
Completed 15th & 16th century
Spire height 93 m (305 ft 1 in)
Materials Brick

Grote of Sint-Jacobskerk (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈɣroːtə ɔf sɪntˈjaːkɔpsˌkɛrk], Great, or St. James Church) is a landmark Protestant church in The Hague, Netherlands. The building is located on the Torenstraat, named for its high tower. Together with the Binnenhof, it is one of the oldest buildings in The Hague. Members of the House of Orange-Nassau have been baptised there. The latest are Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands and his daughter Catharina-Amalia, Princess of Orange.


Stained glass window to commemorate the martyr Jan de Bakker, designed by Max Nauta (nl), executed by glaziers 'Schrier en De Ru' in Haarlem, 1930

The Groote Kerk of St James (15th and 16th centuries) has a fine vaulted interior, and contains some old stained glass, a carved wooden pulpit (1550), a large organ and interesting sepulchral monuments, and some escutcheons of the knights of the Golden Fleece, placed here after the chapter of 1456.[1]

It is remarkable for its fine tower and chime of bells, and contains the cenotaph monument of Jacob van Wassenaer Obdam, designed by Cornelis Moninckx and sculpted by Bartholomeus Eggers in 1667, and the renaissance tomb of Gerrit van Assendelft (1487 - 1558).

The church's six-sided tower is one of the tallest in the Netherlands. There are 34 panels with shields and names of knights of the golden fleece.[2] The richly carved wooden pulpit was made in 1550.[2] The mechanical clock has 15 bells by M. de Haze in 1686, one by Jasper and Jan Moer from 1541, one from H. Van Trier from 1570, one by Coenraat Wegewaert from 1647, and one from C. Fremy from 1692 and 31 modern bells.[2] In the church tower there is an automatic carillon by Libertus van den Burgh, from 1689.[2] In the tower the mechanical clock was installed in 1927.[2] The clock with drumm by Heynrick Vabrie that was used from 1541 to 1689 is kept in the museum 'Speelklok' in Utrecht.

The church endured a fire in 1539, and the stained glass windows were repaired by leading glass artists, including the brothers Dirk and Wouter Crabeth of Gouda.[3] Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, who visited the church after the fire, sponsored two windows by the Crabeth's that due to their royal origin are the only two windows that have survived up to the present day.[3] Under one of these windows lies a commemorative stone from 1857 for Constantijn and Christiaan Huygens, who were buried in unmarked graves in the choir of the church.[3]

Church function[edit]

The church is formally owned by the City of The Hague and is managed by the "Stichting Grote Kerk Den Haag", which conducts restoration activities and rents it for concerts, but also facilitates various cultural initiatives of the city.[3]


  1. ^ 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica entry for The Hague
  2. ^ a b c d e Rijksmonument report
  3. ^ a b c d website "Stichting Grote Kerk Den Haag" - Bezienswaardigheden

External links[edit]