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The market was called the Nedermerckt , or Lower Market. The market likely developed around the same time as the commercial development of Brussels. A document from mentions a lower market Latin: The market was well situated along the Causeway Dutch: Steenweg , an important commercial road which connected the prosperous regions of the Rhineland and the County of Flanders. At the beginning of the 13th century, three indoor markets were built on the northern edge of the Grand Place; a meat market, a bread market, and a cloth market.

Other buildings, made of wood or stone, enclosed the Grand Place. Improvements to the Grand Place from the 14th century onwards would mark the rise in importance of local merchants and tradesmen relative to the nobility. Short on money, the Duke transferred control of mills and commerce to the local authorities. The city of Brussels, as with the neighbouring cities of Mechelen and Leuven , constructed a large indoor cloth market to the south of the square.

At this point, the square was still haphazardly laid out, and the buildings along the edges had a motley tangle of gardens and irregular additions. The Brussels Town Hall was built on the south side of the square in stages, between and , and made the Grand Place the seat of municipal power. To counter this symbol of municipal power, from to , the Duke of Brabant built a large building across from the Town Hall as a symbol of ducal power.

It is currently known as the Maison du roi King's House in French, but in Dutch, it continues to be called the Broodhuis Breadhouse , after the market whose place it took. Over time, wealthy merchants and the increasingly powerful guilds of Brussels built houses around the edge of the square. The Grand Place witnessed many tragic events unfold during its history. Forty years later, the counts of Egmont and Horn , who had spoken out against the policies of King Philip II in the Spanish Netherlands , were beheaded in front of the Breadhouse.

This triggered the beginning of the armed revolt against Spanish rule, of which William of Orange took the lead. The French launched a massive bombardment of the mostly defenseless city centre with cannons and mortars , setting it on fire and flattening the majority of the Grand Place and the surrounding city. Only the stone shell of the town hall and a few fragments of other buildings remained standing.

That the town hall survived at all is ironic, as it was the principal target of the artillery fire. The square was rebuilt in the following four years by the city's guilds. Their efforts were regulated by the city councillors and the Governor of Brussels, who required that their plans be submitted to the authorities for their approval. This helped to deliver a remarkably harmonious layout for the rebuilt Grand Place, despite the ostensibly clashing combination of Gothic , Baroque and Louis XIV styles.

During the following two centuries, the square underwent significant damage. In the late 18th century, Brabant Revolutionaries sacked the Grand Place, destroying statues of nobility and symbols of Christianity. The buildings were neglected and left in poor condition, with their facades painted, stuccoed and damaged by pollution.

Under the impulse of mayor Charles Buls , the Brussels' authorities had the Grand Place returned to its former splendour, with buildings being reconstructed or restored. In , a monumental fountain commemorating the twenty-fifth anniversary of the reign of King Leopold I was installed in the centre of the square. It was replaced in by a fountain, surmounted by statues of the Counts of Egmont and Horn, erected in front of the King's House, which was later moved to the Small Sablon.

At the start of World War I , as refugees flooded Brussels, the Grand Place was filled with military and civilian casualties. The place is now primarily an important tourist attraction.

Neighbouring streets still reflect the area's origins, named after the sellers of butter, cheese, herring, coal, and so on. In , the square was bombed. In , the square was pedestrianised and it is now part of a large pedestrian zone in the centre of Brussels. The Grand Place was voted the most beautiful square in Europe in A survey by a Dutch website [5] asked its users to rate different squares across Europe.

The Town Hall French: Stadhuis is the central edifice on the Grand Place. It was built in several stages between and It is also the square's only remaining medieval building. The architect and designer is probably the Burgundian Jean Bornoy with whom Jacob van Thienen collaborated. At the turn of the years and , the village was burned down completely as a result of a feud between the count of Wertheim and the Teutonic Order.

After the house of the counts of Wertheim had died out in the male line with the death of Michael III, the Bishopric of Würzburg claimed ownership of the village. In , prince-bishop Julius Echter incorporated the village into the bishopric. The title of Vogt was passed down to the Nurembergian patrician families of Haller von Hallerstein, Imhof and von Buirette, who exercised this right until the beginning of the 19th century.

During the Austro-Prussian War of , a battle between royal Prussian and Bavarian troops allied with the Austrian Empire took place near the village on 25 July In order to commemorate this occasion, a memorial named Prinz-Ludwig-Denkmal was erected near the village exit towards Würzburg. It was unveiled on 3 October in the presence of the Prince and veterans of the war of During World War I , 48 soldiers from Helmstadt and 12 soldiers from Holzkirchhausen died at the frontlines.

World War II claimed another respectively 31 victims of the two villages. Apart from that, several disabled citizens were murdered by the Nazis. Helmstadt is a politically autonomous municipality. On 1 May , the previously autonomous municipality of Holzkirchhausen was incorporated into Helmstadt as a result of a local government reorganization. Previously, it had been part of the now dissolved district of Marktheidenfeld. Helmstadt has been the seat of the association of administrations of the same name since 1 May Since 20 November , Helmstadt is organised in the so-called Allianz Waldsassengau , together with twelve surrounding municipalities.

The association serves the promotion of intercommunal cooperation. Apart from three roses attributed to the county of Wertheim, the coat of arms also displays a tool handle, a so-called Halm or Helbling , which can also be found in some of the earlier names of Helmstadt. Helmstadt is twinned with:. The village has both doctor and dentist's offices, a pharmacy, a kindergarten and a primary school. Various companies, including the Deutsche Post AG and banks, offer employment in the village.

Both Helmstadt and Holzkirchhausen are largely Catholic municipalities. Their rectories are organized in the parish association Pfarreiengemeinschaft Hl. The parish association, in turn, is part of the church district of Würzburg on the left side of the Main and is thus subject to the diocese of the bishopric of Würzburg.

The Protestant inhabitants of the village are assigned to the rectory of St. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article is about a town in Bavaria. For a town in Baden-Württemberg, see Helmstadt-Bargen. Not to be confused with Helmstedt.

In the centuries that were to follow, the affiliated daughter monastery of Holzkirchen and the counts of Wertheim shared the power over the village. In other projects Wikimedia Commons.

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