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returning Tues. and Fri. The average passage is 15 hours, 7 of which are occupied in descending the Thames. Fares: chief cabin, 11. 4s.; fore cabin, 18s.; carriages, 31. 3s. Ostend presents more frequent opportunities of reaching London than either Antwerp or Rotterdam.
Between Dover and Ostend there is now a daily mail communication by first-rate iron steamers, belonging to the English and Belgian governments. The departures on both sides are so arranged as to avoid (excepting in extraordinary cases) all landing in boats. The great power of these steamers (120 to 140 H. P.) as compared with their tonnage (190 tons), and their light draft of water (5 to 6 ft.), enable them to save the tide, and to perform the voyage in 4 or 5 hours. The distance is 63 m. Fares: chief cabin, 15s.; fore cabin, 10s.; children, half-price. Carriages, 2 wheels, 1. 11s. 6d.; 4 wheels, 31. 3s. Persons leaving London by the mail train at 8.30 P.M. may reach Brussels or Antwerp at 11.30 next morning, and Cologne in the evening; Hamburg and Berlin at 5 and 9 o'clock respectively on the following evening. Travellers from these towns may reach England in the same time. In the Belgian government steamers the luggage is examined during the voyage.
Steamers sometimes run during summer from Ramsgate, which harbour they can leave at all times of the tide, and therefore have less chance of missing the tide at Ostend.
The light of Dunkirk, about 15 m. S., is seen before the Ostend light. The harbour of Ostend, which is dry at low water, is flanked by 2 jetties, furnishing agreeable walks; at the entrance is a bar of sand, which is kept down by the discharge of the sluices connected with the canal to Bruges.
OSTEND.. Inns: Hotel d'Alemagne, close to Railroad stat., good; H. des Bains; charges, table-d'hôte, 3 fr.; half bottle of wine, 1 fr. 50 c.; bed, 1 fr. 50 c.; tea or breakfast, 1 fr.
50 c.- Cour Impériale. — Lion d'Or; quiet. —H. de Flandres. Tra
ference. (§ 6.)
The Passport-Office and Customhouse are both near the harbour: they open at 5 A.M. in summer, to prevent delay to passengers who may desire to proceed on their journey. If the traveller reaches Ostend in time to proceed on to Bruges the same evening, he will find it the better place to spend the night at. A commissionaire will attend to the passport, and secure places, and consider himself well paid by 2 fr. Vigilantes, § 20. A.
English is much spoken, and there is even an English Chapel here.
A few hours at Ostend exhaust a traveller's patience; while the visit to the douane, and the extortions of innkeepers and commissionaires, are not likely to improve his temper. The best advice which can be given to any one about to embark hence to England, is not to set out for this place a moment sooner than will enable him to go comfortably on board the steamer. Those whom accident or design may detain, will, perhaps, be glad of the following information:
Ostend contains 14,000 inhab. The land lies very low all round, and the waters are controlled by means of sluices.
Ostend is strongly fortified, and surrounded by ramparts and broad ditches. It endured one of the most famous sieges recorded in history, from the Spaniards; it lasted three years and a quarter, from 1601 to 1604. The town yielded to the Spanish general Spinola at last, only by command of the States-General, who had gained their point by its obstinate resistance. 50,000 men of the besieged, and 80,000 Spaniards, are said to have fallen during the siege. The victors paid dearly for their conquest; all that they gained was a plot of ground, covered with a heap of ruins; for their cannon had levelled every house with the earth, and they lost four other towns, which were wrested from them by the Dutch while their armies were engaged in this unprofitable enterprise. The noise of
the bombardment was, it is said, heard from Harwich, Colchester, and elsein London at times.
As a fortress, Ostend forms the first member of that great chain of defences which were intended to protect Belgium on the side of France.
Neither the public buildings here, or the churches, are remarkable, except to those who have never before seen the paraphernalia of the Roman Catholic religion.
Östend is a favourite watering-place, and is much resorted to in summer (Aug. and Sept.); even the King and Queen of the Belgians repair hither, and occupy 2 or 3 ordinary-looking houses in the Rue Longue. There are 80 Bathing Machines on the beach, and the sands are very extensive and smooth, and crowded with bathers of both sexes, decorously clad in bath dresses, by order of the police. A bathing-house, Pavillon des Bains, has been established close to the sea, on the Digue. only thing worth seeing, and the most agrecable spot in Ostend, is this Digue, a sea wall 40 ft. high and m. long, extending between the sea and the ramparts, faced with stone and paved with bricks, which forms a public promenade, and commands a wide extent of dunes and flat sands to the sea: not a tree being visible. This and the wooden Piers stretching on both sides of the harbour's mouth are much resorted to in the evening.
In the Town-hall, on the Place d'Armes, is the Casino, a sort of assembly-room or club, the subscription to which amounts to 12 fr. for the season. It contains a ball-room 150 ft. long, where there is dancing 2 or 3 times a week. Beneath it are reading-rooms, provided with papers, coffee and billiard rooms. Max. Korniker, bookseller, has a shop at Ostend.
An English consul (Mr. Curry) resides at Ostend; a British subject may obtain from him a passport, should he have neglected to provide himself with one in England.
Outside the Bruges gate are the Oyster Parks (Huitrières), salt-water reservoirs filled with oysters brought
where on the English coast, and fattened here. Another is near the Light-house. They are transported hence as far as Paris, under the name of Huitres d'Ostende.
Steamers to London and to Dover, see p. 125.
Diligence daily to Calais, by Dunkirk, in 9 hours.
Railroad, see § 22., and Rte. 21.
OSTEND TO BRUGES, GHENT, TERMONDE, AND MECHLIN. RAILROAD.
Ostend to Bruges 22 kilom., 13 m.; Bruges to Ghent, 45 kilom., 28 m. ¿ Ghent to Mechlin, 56 kilom., 35 m.
The country is rich in an agricultural point of view, but flat, tame, and tiresome to other eyes than those of a farmer.
7 Plasschendael St. The Dunkirk canal here joins that from Ostend to Bruges. At Oudenburg are kitchen gardens, which supply Ostend with vegetables.
6 Jabbeke St.
9 BRUGES Station.
A Canal connects Ostend with Bruges, a fine broad sheet of water, three or four times wider than the narrow strips to which we are accustomed in England. In 1798, a detachment of English troops landed at the mouth of it and destroyed the sluices; but the wind shifted before they could make good their retreat, and they were taken prisoners by the French. Inns :
BRUGES (Flem. BRUGGE). H. de Flandres, in the Rue Noordzand, or de la Monnaie; moderate charges. Table-d'hôte at 1: the fish dinners on Fridays are renowned.-H. du Commerce in the Rue St. Jacques; fair and cheap. Fleur de Blé. Ours d'Or.
This city, the Liverpool of the middle ages, which was rich and powerful when Antwerp and Ghent were only in their infancy, is now reduced to 43,000 inhab., of whom 15,000 are paupers. In the 14th cent., the commerce of the world may be said to have been
concentrated in it; Factories, or privileged companies of merchants from 17 kingdoms, were settled here as agents; 20 foreign ministers had hotels within its walls; and natives of many distant countries, of which little was then known but their names, repaired hither annually. Early in the 13th century, Bruges was made the staple place of the cities of the Hanseatic League, and of the English wool trade, and became the centre of resort for the Lombard and Venetian traders, who brought hither the manufactures of India and the produce of Italy, to exchange them for the merchandise of Germany and the Baltic. Richly laden argosies from Venice, Genoa, and Constantinople, might, at the same time, be seen unloading in its harbour; and its warehouses_groaned beneath bales of wool from England, linen from Belgium, and silk from Persia. It stands on the little river Rege, formerly navigable, but now almost absorbed by canals. Damme, now a small village, about 3 miles on the Sluys road, is said to have been the port of Bruges, flourishing chiefly about 1200; tales are told of basins holding 1000 sail, where now is a fertile plain. At Damme is a fine church, partly in ruins, built early in the 13th century; the tombstones forming the pavement of the nave are beautifully carved. Bruges was long the residence of the Counts of Flanders; but it reached the height of its splendour in the first part of the 15th century, when the Dukes of Burgundy fixed their court here.
At present it wears an air of desolation; the people in its streets are few, and it has lost the indications of com
mercial activity. Its appearance is the more mournful from its great extent, and the size and unaltered splendour of many of the public buildings and private houses, vestiges of its former wealth and prosperity.
Fair city, worthy of her ancient fame!
Canals that intersect the fertile plain-
Spacious and undefac'd- but ancient all.
When I may read of tilts in days of old,
It has still many objects of interest, which deserve at least a day to be devoted to them. They may be conveniently visited in the following order :Start from the railroad station, close to which is a Capuchin convent, by the Rue Zuidzand, which leads to the cathedral (rt.); thence to Nôtre Dame, which is at a short distance to the S. E. -on the W. of this is the Hospital of St. Jean; thence, by the Dyver canal, through the fish market, to the Hôtel de Ville, Palais de Justice, and Chapelle du S. Sang; thence, by the Rue Haute, Pont des Moulins, and Rue Molenmaersch, to the Jerusalem Church, beyond which, near the rampart, are the garden of St. Sebastian and Convent of English ladies: return by Rue and Pont des Carmes to the Academie and the Grande Place.
The Cathedral (St. Sauveur), on the rt. side of the Staen street, leading from the Railway into the town, is a Gothic building, externally of brick, and ugly; but within, the handsomest church in Bruges (date after 1358). Of the pictures which it contains, some are curious for their antiquity, and most as contributions to the history of Flemish art. Against the wall of the S. aisle hangs a small picture with shutters, representing the martyrdom of St. Hippolytus, who was torn in pieces by horses, by Hans Hemling. On the outside of the shutters are 4 saints in grey: inside, a crowned figure, and the donor and his wife, capital portraits. There is also a good picture of the Last Supper, with Abraham and Elijah in the centre and at the side, by Peter Porbus. There are several paintings by the brothers Van Oost. On either side of the altar is a fine marble tomb. In the Chapelle des Cordonniers, in the N. aisle, is a series of monumental Brasses built into the wall, interesting examples of early Flemish art in the 15th and 16th centuries.
Notre Dame (Onse Vrouw) is
church surmounted by a tall brick tower, with stunted spire, less remarkable for its architecture than for the works of art to be found in it. The pulpit is one of those specimens of elaborate carving in wood, so common in the churches of the Netherlands. In a chapel in the S. side of the Ch. is a statue of the Virgin and Child, said to be by Michael Angelo, and believed by Sir Joshua Reynolds to have certainly the air of his school. There is a grandeur about the upper part of the Virgin's figure, and in the turn of the head and in the features, which resemble some of M. Angelo's works. The tradition in Bruges is, that a vessel which was conveying it to England was lost on the neighbouring coast of Flanders. Horace Walpole is said to have offered 30,000 fl. for it. It was carried to Paris by the French. Beyond, in a chapel in the aisle S. of the choir, are the Tombs of Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy, and his daughter Mary, wife of the Empr. Maximilian, the last scious of the house of Burgundy, and the last native sovereigns of the Netherlands. The effigies of both father and daughter, made of copper, richly gilt, but not displaying any high excellence as works of art, repose at full length on slabs of black marble. Beneath and round the sides are coats of arms richly enamelled, "which record the string of duchies, counties, and lordships which this illustrious and amiable heiress brought to the house of Austria, and which afterwards swelled the empire, on which the sun never set, of her grandson Charles V. The exquisite richness of the monuments, the historical interest attaching both to the father and daughter, and the affection of the Flemish for the memory of this young countess, who died when pregnant at the age of 25, by a fall from her horse, while hawking with her husband near Bruges, having long concealed, out of affection for him, the mortal injury she had received, render them objects worthy of considerable attention." The Duke wears a crown on his head, and is decorated with the order of the Golden Fleece.
The Monument of Mary of Burgundy
was erected in 1495, and is far superior to the other. In 1558, Philip II. bespoke one exactly like it for his greatgreat-grandfather, Charles the Bold, and paid one Master Jonghelinck for it 14,000 fl., besides 40 fl. to each of the workmen as compensation for the loss of his teeth in the process of enamelling. During the French Revolution these monuments were concealed, to preserve them from rapacity and Vandalism, by the beadle of the church, Pierre Dezutter, at the peril of his life, since a price of 2000 fr. was put upon his head in consequence of this good deed. Both monuments have been recently (finished in 1848) cleaned and regilt by a goldsmith of Bruges, M. Allard; a charge of 50 cents per person is made for showing them. A wooden planking affixed to the railing of the chapel conceals them from view. A richly carved Gothic balcony, of the pew of the family of Gruthuyze, on the 1. of the high altar, and a painting in the style of John Mabuse (16th cent.), representing a Madonna (Mater Dolorosa) in the centre, with 7 scenes from the life of Christ round it, deserve to be looked at. The Crucifixion and the Last Supper, by Peter Porbus, hang in the side aisles, and are among the finest works of that artist.
In the Ch. of St. Jacques (close to the Hôtel du Commerce), a handsome building, rich in altars and marbles, are some interesting monumental brasses of a Spanish family: observe one, dated 1577, to Don Francisco di Lapuebla and his lady, in the chapel of Ste. Croix. They are worthy of notice, because few are now to be seen in Belgium.
Close to Nôtre Dame is the Hospital of St. John, an ancient charitable institution, where the sick are attended by the religious sisters of the house, whose duties resemble those of the Sœurs de la Charité. Portraits of some of the directors and superiors of the establishment hang in the Chapter House, which also contains the celebrated pictures, the pride of the city and admiration of travellers, painted by Hans Hemling, or more correctly Memling, and presented by him to the hospital out of gratitude
for the succour which he had received | while a patient in it, suffering from wounds received in the battle of Nancy, 1477. The subject of one is the Virgin and Child, with St. Catherine; and on the shutters the Decollation of St. John Baptist and St. John Evangelist at Patmos : on the outside are several figures of saints. The artist never surpassed, or even equalled, this great performance. The stiffness of the figures is usual in paintings of the period at which these were executed; but the careful finish of the heads,-equal to that employed in the finest miniatures, -the exquisite character which they discover, and the beauty and vividness of the colouring, are rare and truly admirable. They were executed in 1479, and bear his name. There is another small altarpiece by Hemling, also with wings: the principal subject is the Adoration of the Magi; at the sides are the Nativity and the Purification in the Temple. Besides these there are two heads by Hemling; also a Crucifixion by Franks, and a Holy Family said to be by Vandyk.
Another not less interesting object is the Reliquary or Chasse (Flem. Ryve) de St. Ursule, a wooden coffer for holding the arm of the saint, painted by Hemling. On each side of the cover are 3 medallions, the smaller of which contain angels playing instruments, the larger a coronation of the Virgin and the glorification of St. Ursula. On one gable end is the Virgin and Child, on the other St. Ursula. On the long sides are subjects from the legend of St. Ursula and the 11,000 Virgins at Cologne. St. Ursula was the daughter of an English king; with a train of 11,000 virgins, her lover Conan, and an escort of knights, she made a pilgrimage to Rome. On their return they all suffered martyrdom at Cologne. The paintings are executed with the most delicate finish. 1. In the first, representing the landing at Cologne, the traveller will recognise the cathedral, churches, and other buildings of that city, copied with considerable fidelity. 2. The landing at Cologne. 3. The arrival at Rome; the Pope receives the
pilgrims. 4. Return to Pasle, and reembarkation on the Rhine. 5 & 6 form one picture, the groups and background being continued from one to the other
the martyrdom of Conan and of St. Ursula in the camp of the Emperor Maximin, on the banks of the Rhine. "These little pictures are among the very best productions of the Flemish school. The drawing in these small figures is much more beautiful than in the larger ones by the same master. There is nothing in them meagre, stiff, or angular: the movements are free; the execution and tone of colour, with all its softness, very powerful; the expression in the single heads, of the highest excellence."-Kugler.
The large hall, divided by partitions into wards and dormitories, and kitchen for the use of the patients, is interesting for its cleanliness and good order, and, above all, for its antiquity. It is a Gothic hall, with rows of pointed arches on piers dividing it into aisles, and, probably, has undergone no change since the day when Hemling was received into it. Admission is given at any time except when service is going on in the church.
The Hôtel de Ville is an elegant Gothic structure, though of small dimensions, built in 1377. The niches in front were decorated with curious statues of the Counts of Flanders; but on the arrival of the French revolutionary army, in 1792, all these "representations of tyrants" were pulled down, broken, and burnt in the great square in a bonfire, the materials of which were composed of the gallows, the scaffold, and the wheel. At a window or balcony, in front of the building, the Counts of Flanders presented themselves to the citizens after their accession, and took the oaths, promising to obey the laws and maintain the privileges of the town. The Public Library (open 10-3) is now placed in the Grand Hall, extending nearly the whole length of the building, and is remarkable for its Gothic roof of wood. well furnished in the departments of French and Flemish literature, and contains a few curious MSS.