Monday, 18 May 2015

Four day trip to the Netherlands - (Day 1 morning) - Maastricht - the Roman bridge, the Meuse river and the Saint Servatius Basilica - The 14th of May 2015


As we walked out of the station we took the main street  going towards the city centre. I must admit I was impressed with it at first sight and once I got closer to the heart of the city the more I felt it was special 

"De Wiekener" (a local citizen) by Frans Scarlier
We turned right into a street leading to St. Martinus church, whose rather interesting entrance I photographed once the church itself was closed. It is said to have been built in 1858 as a replacement of an earlier church severely damaged by the French in 1794.

As we walked further down we reached the Meuse river bank and a very intriguing sculpted stone, whose plaque written in Dutch provided little information as to what it really was associated to (for non-Dutch native speakers), though the name of King Willem I was mentioned and so were two dates - 1229 and 1284.

To its left stood the proud looking medieval bridge, which is known to have been built in the 1st century AD during the reign of Augustus Caeser. It is often referred to as Saint Servatius's bridge and it bears a statue depicting him, which is said to have been added by Charles Vos in 1934.

Everywhere in the city streets and lanes we came across old façades and details that I somehow felt made the difference architecturally speaking. The old and the new seemed to cohabit in a rather harmonious way, though at times (fortunately not too often) excessive modernity had (in my rather humble opinion) a somewhat less positive impact like the Zaat Herremenieke group of statues by Han Van Wetering in front of Saint Servatius Basilica. 

De Komedianten by Appie Drielsma - 1991

Having reached the Saint Servatius Basilica square we found out it looked like an entertainment fair type of scenario, bearing in mind it was a public holiday and  not exactly knowing what to expect we decided to walk around and see if we could get access to its interior, once there seemed to be no entrance in sight.

Zaat Herremenieke group of statues by Han Van Wetering - 1993

As we were making our way towards its entrance we came across what looked like it could either be an old city wall or an access to the side cloisters, fairly close to which stood the statues of Saint Monulphus and  Saint Gondulphus.

(To be continued)


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