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Brasschaat

Brasschaat is a municipality located in Flanders, one of the three regions of Belgium, and in the Flemish province of Antwerp. The municipality only comprises the town of Brasschaat proper. In November 2006, Brasschaat won the LivCom-Award 2006 for the most liveable municipality in the world.HistoryOriginsThe history of Brasschaat started with Celtic settlements. The Gallic tribe of the Belgae displaced them and were in turn conquered by the Romans, who built a major road in the area. After the Germanic invasions in the 3rd and 4th century, the whole region was Christianized. In the Middle Ages the little river Laarse, flowing through the woods of the municipality, served as a natural bordermark between the Bishopric of Liège and the Bishopric of Cambrai.Middle AgesThe first mention of Breesgata, sometimes also spelled Brexgata, dates from 1269. In 1482, a convent of nuns was founded here, traces of which can still be seen today. The village of Brasschaat belonged geographically to the Campine region, but politically and ecclesiastically was part of the Bishopric of Liège until 1569. At that time, the village had about 4,500 inhabitants and 383 horses. The end of the 16th century was particularly hard on the population. In the span of 25 years, the wars between Catholics and Protestants greatly reduced the population to 420 people and 59 horses. At the end of the plague pandemic that struck the community in 1610, only 26 families were left. The guild of Sint-Antonius, currently still the oldest local association, was founded in 1667.
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