Silvius Brabo

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Silvius Brabo [ˈsɪɫviəz ˈbraːboː] was a mythical Roman soldier and the legendary founder and namesake of the city of Antwerp and Duke of Brabant.[1]

According to one version of the legend, the giant Druon Antigoon guarded a bridge over the Scheldt;[1][2] another version has Druon guarding the port, demanding a tax from passing ships.[3] When a person did not pay, Druon would cut off a hand (Dutch: hand) and throw (Dutch: werp) it into the river. Brabo, a young Roman soldier, challenged Druon, cutting off his hand and throwing it into the River.[1] Thus, the City gained its Dutch name Antwerpen from handwerpen (lit. transl. throwing hands).[1][2]

This mythical story is depicted by a fountain in front of the Antwerp City Hall.[4]


  1. ^ a b c d Overlaet, Kim (2018-03-15). "The 'Joyous Entry' of Archduke Maximilian into Antwerp (13 January 1478): An Analysis of a 'Most Elegant and Dignified' Dialogue". Journal of Medieval History. 44 (2): 237–240. doi:10.1080/03044181.2018.1440622.
  2. ^ a b Schaeps, Jef (2019). "Old-Fashioned in Order to be Modern: Seghelijn van Iherusalem and its Woodcuts" (PDF). In Besamusca, Bart; et al. (eds.). Early Printed Narrative Literature in Eastern Europe. Berlin: De Gruyter. pp. 304–306. doi:10.1515/9783110563016-011. ISBN 978-3-11-056301-6. LCCN 2019938240. OCLC 1129152654.
  3. ^ Kaminska, Barbara A. (2019). Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Religious Art for the Urban Community. Art and Material Culture in Medieval and Renaissance Europe. Leiden: Brill. p. 69. ISBN 9789004408401. ISSN 2212-4187. LCCN 2019023002. OCLC 1107061295.
  4. ^ Wayenberg, Ellen; Steen, Trui (2018). "Reaching Out to Sub-Municipal Decentralization: An Ongoing Challenge in Belgium". In Hlepas, Nikolaos-Komninos; et al. (eds.). Sub-municipal Governance in Europe: Decentralization Beyond the Municipal Tier. Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 25–26. doi:10.1007/978-3-319-64725-8_2. ISBN 9783319647258. LCCN 2017955212. OCLC 1020318855.