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Brugge

I finished Stiff – very good book, unique (needing no adjective) and entertaining.

We walked from the hotel to the main market square and then visited the Basiliek van het Heilig Bloed (Basilica of the Holy Blood); its named that because it contains a relic in glass of, well, holy blood.

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Ticket to see the precious holdings of the Basiliek

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A detail from a fountain off the main square
The civic centre
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One of the buildings on the main square
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Basiliek van het Heilig Bloed (Basilica of the Holy Blood)
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The alter fresco
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A detail from outside the Basiliek

We crossed one of the main canals. We stopped at a little shop to get some chewing gum; the owner talked with us about our dog Basil. They taught us how they pronounce Schepperke (more like she-par-ka).

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Two views of the main canal through Brugge

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Some of the buildings along the canal

We then went to the Groeninge Museum. They have a number of fine works including a famous Bosch. The painting of the judgement of Cambyses is quite gruesome as it depicts the flaying, or skinning alive, of the corrupt judge in the day of Cambyses of Persia (its after a biblical story).

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The ticket for the museum – the reverse is shared with the ticket for the Memling Museum

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The Last Judgement by Hieronymous Bosch

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The Judgement of Cambyses by Gerard David A fountain outside the museum

We bought a small paperweight in the gift shop with a detail from the lower left corner of the center painting. Its a barrel of people excreting with a number of people surrounding the barrel drinking the foul material and then expelling it from every oriface.

We had lunch a nice little restaurant named ‘t Arentshof. We both really liked the food and the service was good.

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We then went to the Memling Museum. Hans Memling was a famous artist who was born in and lived in Brugge from 1440 – 1494. The Museum is located in the Sint-Janshospitaal, the old hospital building.

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The exit of the Groeninge Museum A detail from the facade of the Memling Museum

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A photo of the nurses when the Memling Museum was a hospital

There are a number of wonderful paintings and sculptures inside; there are six paintings by Memling including a tryptich on the life of John the Evangelist.

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A detail of Memling’s
“John the Evangelist”
tryptich, right panel

We stopped for a snack on the walk back to the hotel and I got a small bottle of oude jenever, dutch gin made in the old style – its not the brand that was suggested to me by a friend as I couldn’t find that in Brugge, so I suppose I need to go to Gent.

We took a train back to Schipol – we had to change trains at Antwerp Centraal in 7 minutes – luckily the other train was on the next track so we literally ran across the platform! We checked into the Sheraton at the airport at about 7:45P, relaxed, packed and slept – the Sheraton is a very nice and friendly hotel.

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