Place:Delft, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands


NameDelft
TypeGemeente
Coordinates52°N 4.36667°E
Located inZuid-Holland, Netherlands     (500 - )
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog


the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Delft is a city and municipality in the province of South Holland, Netherlands. It is located between Rotterdam, to the southeast, and The Hague, to the northwest. Together with them, it is part of both Rotterdam–The Hague metropolitan area and the Randstad.

Delft is a popular tourist attraction in the country. It is home to Delft University of Technology (TU Delft), regarded as center of technological research and development in the Netherlands, Delft Blue pottery and the currently reigning House of Orange-Nassau. Historically, Delft played a highly influential role in the Dutch Golden Age. Delft has a special place in the history of microbiology. In terms of science and technology, thanks to the pioneering contributions of Antonie van Leeuwenhoek and Martinus Beijerinck, Delft can be considered to be the true birthplace of microbiology, with its several sub-disciplines such as bacteriology, protozoology, and virology.

Contents

History

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Early history

The city of Delft came into being beside a canal, the 'Delf', which comes from the word delven, meaning delving or digging, and led to the name Delft. It presumably started around the 11th century as a landlord court.

From a rural village in the early Middle Ages, Delft developed into a city, that in the 13th century (1246) received its charter. (For some more information about the early development, see Gracht).

The town's association with the House of Orange started when William of Orange (Willem van Oranje), nicknamed William the Silent (Willem de Zwijger), took up residence in 1572. At the time he was the leader of growing national Dutch resistance against Spanish occupation, known as the Eighty Years' War. By then Delft was one of the leading cities of Holland and it was equipped with the necessary city walls to serve as a headquarters. An attack by Spanish forces in October of that year was repelled.

After the Act of Abjuration was proclaimed in 1581, Delft became the de facto capital of the newly independent Netherlands, as the seat of the Prince of Orange.

When William was shot dead in 1584 by Balthazar Gerards in the hall of the Prinsenhof, the family's traditional burial place in Breda was still in the hands of the Spanish. Therefore, he was buried in the Delft Nieuwe Kerk (New Church), starting a tradition for the House of Orange that has continued to the present day.

Delft Explosion

The Delft Explosion, also known in history as the , occurred on 12 October 1654 when a gunpowder store exploded, destroying much of the city. Over a hundred people were killed and thousands were wounded.

About of gunpowder were stored in barrels in a magazine in a former Clarissen convent in the Doelenkwartier district. Cornelis Soetens, the keeper of the magazine, opened the store to check a sample of the powder and a huge explosion followed. Luckily, many citizens were away, visiting a market in Schiedam or a fair in The Hague.

Today, the explosion is remembered primarily for killing Rembrandt's most promising pupil, Carel Fabritius, and destroying almost all his works.

Delft artist Egbert van der Poel painted several pictures of Delft showing the devastation.

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