Visit Holland - The Netherlands

Zutphen

Zutphen is a city in the province of Gelderland in the Netherlands. It lies some 30 km north-east of Arnhem, on the Eastern bank of the river IJssel at the point where it is joined by the Berkel.

The name Zutphen (first mentioned in the eleventh century) appears to mean 'zuid-veen', or in English, south-fen.
In 2005, the municipality of Zutphen was merged with the municipality of Warnsveld, retaining its name. The municipality has about 47,000 inhabitants.
Zutphen is also twinned with the English town Shrewsbury, in the Midlands county of Shropshire.

History
1649 map of Zutphen in Willem and Joan Blaeu's "Toonneel der Steden"About 300 AD a Germanic settlement was the first permanent town on a complex of low river dunes. Whereas many such settlements were abandoned in the early Middle Ages, Zutphen on its strategic confluence of IJssel and Berkel stayed. After the incorporation of the IJssel lands in Charlemagne's Francia, Zutphen became a local centre of governance under a count. The Normans raided and ravaged it in 882. Afterwards a circular fortress was build to protect the budding town against Viking attacks.

In the eleventh century Zutphen was a royal residence for a number of years; a pfalz was built, together with a large chapter church, the predecessor of the present St. Walburgis. The counts of Zutphen acquired a lot of power, until the line of counts became extinct in the twelfth century. After the death of her father and her brother, Ermgard, the heiress of Zutphen married the count of Guelders; her son Henry I, Count of Guelders was the first to wear both titles.

The settlement received town rights between 1191 and 1196, making it one of the oldest towns in the country. This allowed it to self govern and have a judicial court. Only Utrecht, and Deventer preceded it in receiving town rights. Zutphen, in turn, became the mother town of several other towns in Guelders, such as Arnhem, Doetinchem, Doesburg, Lochem, Harderwijk, Venlo and Emmerich. It also became part of the Hanseatic League, a group of towns with great wealth; this league was the economic centre in that part of Europe.

The largest and oldest church of the city is the St. Walburgis (Saint Walpurga) church, which originally dates from the eleventh century. The present Gothic building contains monuments of the former counts of Zutphen, a fourteenth century candelabrum, an elaborate copper font (1527), and a monument to the Van Heeckeren family (1700). The chapter-house of library ("Librije") contains a pre-Reformation library which includes some valuable manuscripts and incunabula. It is considered one of only 5 remaining medieval libraries in Europe (the other 4 being in England and Italy). The old books are still chained to their ancient wooden desk, a habit of centuries ago, dating from the times when the library was a "public library" and the chains prevented the books from being stolen.

Having been fortified the town withstood several sieges, specially during the wars of freedom waged by the Dutch against Spain, the most celebrated fight under its walls being the Battle of Zutphen in September 1586 when Sir Philip Sidney was mortally wounded. Taken by the Spanish in 1587 by the treachery of the English commander Rowland York, Zutphen was recovered by Maurice, prince of Orange, in 1591, and except for two short periods, one in 1672 and the other during the French Revolutionary Wars, it has since then remained a part of the Netherlands. Its fortifications were dismantled in 1874. In World War II the town was bombed several times by the allied forces because the bridge over the IJssel was vital to support the German troops at Arnhem after the Operation Market Garden. After two weeks of battle the town was liberated on the 14th of April 1945. After the war a renovation program started. Nowadays Zutphen has one of the best preserved medieval town centres of North-Western Europe, including the remains of the medieval town wall and a few hundred buildings dating from the 13th - 15th century.

Print

 

Latest news

Vermeer - famous Dutch painter from Delft

Johannes, Jan or Johan Vermeer (1632 – December 1675) was a Dutch painter who specialized in domestic interior scenes of middle-class life. Vermeer was a moderately successful provincial genre painter in his lifetime. He evidently was not wealthy, leaving his wife and children in debt at his death, perhaps because he produced relatively few paintings.

Read more...

Claire Morgan The Sound of Silence - Noord Brabants Museum

Claire Morgan - The Sound of Silence: 8 Oct 2016 t/m 8 Jan 2017.  This autumn, the Noordbrabants Museum will exhibit the intriguing work of a young artist from Northern Ireland, Claire Morgan. After successful exhibitions abroad, including in Britain, this will be her first solo museum exhibition in the Netherlands.

Read more...

Reflex Gallery is delighted to announce a major exhibition of the work of Donald Baechler

Reflex Gallery is delighted to announce a major exhibition of the work of Donald Baechler this September 2016. This will be the first extensive exhibition in the Netherlands for the world-famous American artist.

Read more...

500.000 tulips in bloom during the 2nd edition of Tulp Festival in Amsterdam

500.000 tulips in bloom during the 2nd edition of Tulp Festival in Amsterdam 60 locations , 400 varieties, walking and bike routes.
For the second year in succession, Amsterdam will be decked in the most glorious colours, throughout April and May. During the Tulp Festival 2016 visitors can marvel at more than 500,000 brightly coloured tulips, of more than 400 different varieties, at 60 locations throughout the capital.

Read more...

Netherlands Hotel Reviews by Real Guests

Netherlands Hotel Reviews by Real Guests. Recent reviews for Hotels in the Netherlands. See the reviews FULL Screen?

Read more...

Hotels close to more then 900 landmarks in Holland

A long list of landmarks in the Netherlands. We have this list in alphabetical order to find the city of your choice. Aalden Golfclub de Gelpenberg Book hotels close to this landmark Aalsmeer Aalsmeer Flower Auction Book hotels close to this landmark Aalten Aalten Station Book hotels close to this landmark Abcoude Abcoude Station Book hotels close to this landmark Aduard Zuidhorn Station Book hotels close to this landmark Akkrum Akkrum Station Book hotels close to this landmark

Read more...