III. Beatrice of Nazareth
Great Beguinage of St. Amandsberg
Groot Begijnhof St. Amandsberg
Sources. A great many thanks against to my grandfather for supplying these beautiful postcards. When the picture is not of such a postcard the source is mentioned (e.g., above: virgin and child in a door at St. Amandsberg; photograph by Michel Fischer, in: Weyuergans and Zenoni, p.51)
The Old Great Beguinage of St. Elisabeth in Ghent. The Great Beguinage of Ghent was founded in 1234, thanks to a yearly interest donated by Countess Johanna of Constantinople. It grew into a "beguine city" with a church, a chapel, a communal house, an infirmary, eighteen "convents" or houses, and 103 houses. In the 19th century (1874) though the "bleekhof", i.e., the lawn where the laundry was dried, was parceled out, the mote around the beguinage was filled in, and an entire street was taken away. The last 300 beguines who still lived there were moved to what now became the Great Beguinage of St.Amandsberg - the Mount of the Holy Lover. There is still one street left along with a couple of buildings, and the Church, dedicated to St. Elisabeth of Hungary (the oldest part of this church is from the 13th century).
The Small Beguinage in Ghent (*) was founded a year after the Great one, in 1235, and it is situated in the "Lange Violettenstraat", the long street with the violets. Because it was built next to the hayfields of the abbey "Nonnenbos" (forest of the nuns), it was called Onze-Lieve-Vrouw-ter-Hooie. Most of the buildings still standing were built between 1600 and 1700.
The Great Beguinage at St. Amandsberg (#), situated on a domain of 8 hectares, was built between 1872 and 1874 to accommodate the beguines who were driven from the beguinage in Ghent. When it was officially opened in 1874, no less than 700 beguines took their home here! It features a high wall around it, a church, chapel, communal house, 14 convents, and 80 houses, 2 gate buildings.
life at the beguinage
werken... (to work...)
... en kerken (... and "to church")
Above: Going to evening mass at (#)
Congregated in front of the Chapel of Seven Pains ("Kapel der Zeven Weeen") at (#)
This is Hermina Hoogewijs (who iwas 87 in 2001). She is the last beguine in the Small Beguinage in Ghent. She was honored last year (picture of cover of Stadsmagazine Gent, vol.3, no.9)