Notre-Dame des Riches-Claires/Onze-Lieve-Vrouw ter Rijke Klaren

Notre-Dame des Riches-Claires/Onze-Lieve-Vrouw ter Rijke Klaren
(Church) (Rue des Riches-Claires)
   The church of Notre-Dame des Riches-Claires was built in the mid-17th century in the Italianate-Flemish style. The Riches Claires nuns had established a convent near the porte de Hal in 1343. It was demolished in 1578 in order to extend the city wall and the sisters moved to this location near the place Saint-Géry, which had been founded as a monastery by the Brothers of the Common Life. In the 17th century, it was decided to renovate and enlarge the compound of buildings, including the construction of a new church. Work began in 1665 under architect Luc Fayd'herbe (1617-1697). Largely destroyed in the bombardment of 1695, it was again rebuilt. The order of Riches Claires was abolished in the late 18th century, and two new streets were cut through the convent grounds—rue des Riches-Claires and rue Saint-Christophe. The church was reopened and enlarged in the early 19th century. It served as a hospital for those wounded in September 1830 during fighting consequent to the Belgian Revolution. A fire in June 1989 caused extensive damage and the church organs were lost. The structure has been laboriously restored. The church today houses a 16th-century Pietà and embroidery and lace from the church of Saint-Géry, which was destroyed during the French regime. Excavations at the site have been undertaken.

Historical Dictionary of Brussels. .

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