Bell Tower, Mons, Belgium

bell tower mons belgium unesco world heritage site
The Bell Towers of Belgium and France, such as this one in Mons, Belgium are more symbols of secular, rather than church, power.

There are a total of 56 belfries in Northern France and Belgium that are jointly inscribed on the Unesco World Heritage List. We saw a few of them in Ghent, Bruges, and Antwerp along the long drive we took through Belgium. It was convenient for us to stop in Mons at lunchtime and have a couple of sausages and tramp up a hill to get to this one. Obviously it's a later example as it could be described as Baroque in style (while others date all the way back to the Romanesque or Early Gothic periods. According to the literature, many towns built belfries or town halls as a celebration of the advent of their civil liberties and increased independence from a central government dominated by the church, kings, and capital cities.

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