What would the late-mediaeval travellers have seen as they approached ’s-Hertogenbosch? How would the city have appeared to people centuries ago? What picture of the city would the visitors have had in mind on their way to ’s-Hertogenbosch? The journey was arduous; the roads were muddy and hard to negotiate. From whichever direction the travellers came, brick walls and earthen ramparts loomed up indomitably in the distance. They would have been able to make out the high battlements of the city wall. The roofs of houses were visible above the wall, and among them the large and small spires of dozens of churches, chapels and monasteries pointing up to the sky. The imposing Sint-Jan Cathedral, then under construction, was another obvious landmark.
In the 4th and 15th centuries ’s-Hertogenbosch, now often shortened to Den Bosch, capital of the dukedom of Brabant, displayed unmistakeable signs of urban grandeur. It was an important mercantile trading centre where the textile and metal industries flourished. People with an entrepreneurial spirit flocked to it, numerous printers of books (important for the dissemination of knowledge) made a living there and, most important of all, it was the abode of the famous painter Jheronimus Bosch, and possessed allure because of its many international contacts.
In more recent times ’s-Hertogenbosch has changed dramatically. Expanding in all directions, it has become a city of services rather than trade and industry. Although less distinctively than in the past, this capital of the province of Noord-Brabant still has a southern feel about it, with much to offer the present-day visitor: an unusually rich history, Sint-Jan Cathedral, the river Binnendieze, the Bossche Broek, restored monuments and museums. And let’s not forget the festivals, the many places of entertainment, restaurants, hotels and shops. Who can leave Den Bosch without having tried a Bossche bol? ’s-Hertogenbosch welcomes you with open arms.
Titel ’s-Bosch. An essential history. Auteur Josien Stehouwer Redactie Rob van de Laar en Aart Vos Uitgever Aldus Projecten in opdracht van het Stadsarchief ’s-Hertogenbosch ISBN 9789070545369 Uitvoering 64 pagina’s, formaat 12 x 17 cm., genaaid gebonden, full colour binnenwerk, rijk geïllustreerd Verkoopprijs € 4,95 Verschijnt begin december 2015