Roermond - Encyclopedia

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ROERMOND, a town in the province of Limburg, Holland, on the right bank of the Maas at the confluence of the Roer, and a junction station 28 m. by rail N.N.E. of Maastricht. Pop. (Igoo) 12,348. The old fortifications have been dismantled and partly converted into fine promenades. At this point the Maas is crossed by a bridge erected in 1866-67, and the Roer by one dating from 1771, replacing an older structure, and connecting Roermond with the suburb of St Jacob. Roermond is the seat of a Roman Catholic episcopal see. The finest building in the town is the Romanesque minster church of the first quarter of the 13th century. In the middle of the nave is the tomb of Gerhard III., count of Gelderland, and his wife Margaret of Brabant. It was formerly the church of a Cistercian nunnery, and in modern times has been elaborately restored. The cathedral of St Christopher is also of note; on the top of the tower (246 ft.) is a copper statue of the saint, and the interior is adorned with paintings by Rubens, Jacob de Wit (1695-1754) and others. The Reformed church was once the chapel of the monastery of the Minorites. There is also a Redemptorist chapel. The old bishop's palace is now the courthouse, and the old Jesuits' monastery with its fine gardens a higher-burgher school. Woollen, cotton, silk and mixed stuffs, paper, flour and beer are manufactured at Roermond.

Close to Roermond on the west is the village of Horn, once the seat of a lordship of the same name, which is first mentioned in a document of 1166. The lordship of Horn was a fief of the counts of Loon, and after 1361 of the bishop of Liege; but in 1450 it was raised to a countship by the Emperor Frederick II. On the extinction of the house of Horn in 1540, the countship passed to the famous Philip of Montmorency, who, with the count of Egmont, was executed in Brussels in 1568 by order of the duke of Alva. In the beginning of the next century the countship was forcibly retained by the see of Liege, and was incorporated in the French department of the Lower Maas at the end of the 18th century. The ancient castle is in an excellent state of preservation and is sometimes used for the assembly of the states.

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