Saturday, May 1, 2010

The Netherlands - Amersfoort, Lange Jan


From: Anja - Postcrossing - NL-330941 , Thanks! :)
Location:   Amersfoort , The Netherlands 
Subject:  Onze Lieve Vrouwetoren - ('The Tower of Our Lady') is a church tower in Amersfoort. The Late Gothic building is 98,33 meter tall and reaches high above the inner city. It's one of the most eye-catching monuments in town and the third highest church tower in the Netherlands. The nickname of the tower is Lange Jan ('Long John'). The church that belonged to the tower was demolished in the 18th century.

The first chapel on site was constructed on this site in the 14th century. In the 15th century this chapel was replaced by new church with three aisles. When the tower was built is not exactly known. Construction started around 1444 and was finished around 1470. The official documents of the construction were destroyed by the Protestants in 1579 during the reformation and the ensuing iconoclasm. The church and tower where taken over by the Protestants and no longer belonged to the Catholics. The church also has been used for other purposes than worshiping. It was used as a storage place for ammunition and as laboratory for the manufacturing of shells. In 1986 some research was done into its history and in the current square one can see the original plan of the church. The spire of the church burned down in 1651 and also in 1804. The tower was restored in 1912–1932, in 1965–1970 and in 1993–1996.

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