Friday, December 3, 2010

The relic of the Holy Blood

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The Basilica of the Holy Blood (Basiliek van het Heilig Bloed) in Bruges houses a venerated relic of Christ: his very blood, collected by Joseph of Arimathea.

Myth and Mystery
Legend has it that after the Crucifixion, Joseph of Arimathea wiped blood from the body of Christ and preserved the cloth. The relic remained in the Holy Land until the Second Crusade, when the King of Jerusalem Baldwin III gave it to his brother-in-law, Count of Flanders Diederik van de Elzas. The count arrived with it in Bruges on April 7, 1150 and placed it in a chapel he had built on Burg Square.

Names: Basilica of the Holy Blood; Basiliek van het Heilig Bloed
Type of site: Catholic shrine
Date: 12th century
Address: Burg 10, Bruges, Belgium
Hours: Apr-Sept daily 9:30am-noon and 2-6pm; Oct-Mar daily 10am-noon and 2-4pm (closed Wed afternoon)
Cost: Basilica free; museum 1€ adults, .50€ children

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