In the early afternoon after our walking tour in outer Antwerp our coach dropped us off at the car park by the River Scheldt from where we made our way to the Grote Markt and the Cathedral.
The Grote Markt, Antwerp
Onze-Lieve-Vrouwe Kathedraal, Antwerp
From here we dispersed to find lunch. The plan then was to reassemble at the Cathedral in about an hour in order to tour the Rubens paintings which hang there, currently. However, with no persuasion from me, my friend and I decided we would rather visit the Plantin-Moretus Museum and arranged to meet the group back at the coach at 5pm.
Wrapping my purchases at The Chocolate Box
So, after a tasty pub lunch and making some chocolate purchases, we soon found the museum and were very happy with our choice. This is the only museum listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The Plantin-Moretus Museum, Antwerp
The Elegant Interior Garden
“This is one of the most interesting museums in Antwerp. It is housed in the mansion of Christophe Plantin, who set up as a printer in 1555, one of the first industrial printers in history. In the workshop, the equipment, which includes one of the oldest surviving printing presses, has been left as it was when operations ceased in the early 19th century. There is much else to see here besides, including the family home, a sumptuous patrician home with an elegant interior garden, tapestries, vellum Bible, woodcuts, copper plates, and works by Rubens. The museum’s archives, more than 100 years old, have been placed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List.” [Source : My LV City Guide to Amsterdam, Antwerp, Brussels, Zurich, 2012]
The Original Bookshop : books sold here from 1700
In the Great Library
In the Great Library/Chapel
The Moretuses’ own private book collection (1640) is an example of a humanist library. The volumes are shelved by size. By 1655 the Library was used as a Chapel.
This is wonderful! I have a friend who is spending his retirement rebinding and restoring 17th century herbals and the like, bought on ebay, believe it or not. I’ve a feeling he has never visited this museum so I must tell him about it.
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