Brussels is Belgium’s capital and home to the European Union headquarters. The Grand-Place square at the heart of the city has shops and cafes inside ornate 17th-century guild houses, and the intricate Gothic Hôtel de Ville (town hall) with a distinctive bell tower. The 19th-century Maison du Roi houses the Musée de la Ville de Bruxelles city-history museum, including costumes for the city’s famed Manneken Pis statue. Brussels occupies an area measuring 161.4 square kilometres (62.2 sq. mi) and a majority of its residents speak Flemish Dutch or French. 4. About 27 percent of the residents in Brussels are not Belgium citizens.
Historical, Cultural facts & Religion
Medieval Infancy. Brussels was officially founded in 979 when a small castle was built near the Senne River. Lambert II of Leuven built a new castle and a city wall in the mid-11th century. From the 12th century onwards, Brussels developed as an important stop on the commercial road from Bruges to Cologne. Belgian culture involves both the aspects shared by all Belgians regardless of the language they speak and the differences between the main cultural communities: the Dutch-speaking Flemish and the French-speaking Walloons. Most Belgians view their culture as an integral part of European culture. Major Religions in Belgium. While most Belgians are Roman Catholic, the country has significant numbers of Muslims and atheists, especially in major urban areas. A Catholic cathedral in Brussels, Belgium.
Brief City History
In the middle of the 11th century, city walls were erected and for much of the Middle Ages, Brussels thrived, thanks to its strategic location along the Bruges-Ghent-Cologne trade route. The city has also become the de facto capital of the European Union and NATO, of which Belgium is a founding member. The founding of Brussels dates back to around 979 when Duke Charles passed on the relics of Saint Gudula from Moorsel to the Saint Gaugericus chapel in Brussels. Today the chapel is located on the holy island of Saint Gaugericus. On this same very island Charles of France; the expelled son of King Louis IV built the first permanent fortification when The Holy Roman Emperor Otto II gave the duchy of Lower Lotharingia to him. In those days Saint Gaugericus island was recognized as the Island of Saint-Gorik. Carl of France decided to build a castrum on the island which laid the foundation of Brussels city. By the start of the 10th century, after the death of Charles, Low-Lorraine was taken in possession by Lambert of Leuvenm Charles’ son. In 1047, his son Lambert II of Leuven established the Saint Gudula chapter. He also started expanding the city by building a new castrum and fortification walls. In the 12th century, the small town became an important stopover on the commercial road from Bruges to Cologne. The village benefited from this favorable position, and as the population started multiplying to 30,000, the nearby marshes were wiped out to allow for further expansion. Around 1183-1184 the Counts of Leuven were elevated to the position of Dukes of Brabant. In 1357 to 1379 a new city wall was constructed as the former one was already proving to be too small: the inner ring or ‘pentagon’ now followed its course. In the 15th century, due to the wedding of heiress Margaret III of Flanders with Philip the Bold, Duke of Burgundy, a new Duke of Brabant surfaced from the House of Valois, their son Antoine. Another line of descent appeared from the Habsburgs when Maximilian I of Austria married Mary of Burgundy, who was born in Brussels. Due to such sudden variations in the descendants, Brabant lost its independence, but Brussels flourished by becoming the Princely Capital of the prosperous Low Countries.
Language (s) Written & Spoken
Dutch is the most spoken primary language of Belgium and the official language of the Flemish Community and the Flemish Region (merged to Flanders) and, along with French, an official language of the Brussels-Capital Region.
Important Types of Commerce in Brussels
The corridor between Antwerp and Brussels also has emerged as a major manufacturing zone, eclipsing the older industrial concentration in the Sambre-Meuse valley. Metallurgy, steel, textiles, chemicals, glass, paper, and food processing are the dominant industries.
Language Services US and others will provide working with Brussels
Brussels has been in a trade relationship with several countries. Because of such close relations, the necessity to learn and understand the Dutch language has increased in importance over the years. This developed the need for Dutch translators and interpreters. Moreover, for businesses planning to tap into Brussels, in order to maximize the voice of your brand and help them to reach a new Dutch-speaking audience with enormous marketing opportunities in the global market, the next step is to partner with a professional translation and interpretation company.
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