February 23 : Mons, Belgium
If you would like to see bigger versions of the pictures, click on them!
Le Collégiale Sainte Waudru represents true Brabant Gothic architecture, having been constructed and strengthened between the 13th and 17th centuries.  This magnificent church houses what you see in the next three pictures.  By the way, has anyone heard of Saint Waudru?  She lived a very very long time ago, that's about all I can tell you...in latter half of the 7th century. 
Inside the church is this gorgeous organ, which kind of made me miss Tuscaloosa.
Again, another picture that might have come out fine with proper lighting (i.e., a flash).  This is the Car d'Or of 1780, which carries the shrine of Saint Waudru in procession through Mons on Trinity Sunday.
I found these two guys slacking off of the job.  They were just lying there at the back of the Collégiale, staring up at the roof as if they had nothing to do.  I wondered if it would be too suspicious for me to walk out carrying a large gargoyle.  Guess so.
The Hôtel de Ville, originally built in 1458, received its tower in 1718.  In the Grand Place of Mons the day I was there, they were taking down a temporary ice-skating rink--which explains the railing you see across the picture.
This is the 15th century 'Grande Garde' of Mons : an iron monkey who sits just outside the entrance of the Hôtel de Ville and who brings you luck if you touch his head.

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This page was created by David M. Rojas and last updated on Friday February 26, 1999.