A Castle brought to Life

By Nils Visser

A pictorial portrayal of the bank holiday weekend of 26, 27 and 28 May at Castle Hoensbroek, in Limburg, in the Netherlands. Under the slogan "Hoensbroek Lives!" a great number of re-enactors and weapons demonstration groups as well as related traders and entertainers, were allowed to invade the castle to try to give visitors and inkling of the activities that took place here during the Middle Ages.

Pictures by Nils Visser, Christoph Wiekart, Marcel Vankan, Niels Verschoor and Erik Mesdag, using a very simple little digital Olympus.

The original stronghold, remnants of which are visible in the main keep, was built in 1250.

The great Round Tower, was built in 1360

1500 saw further extensions of the main keep, including the front right tower.

A lot of remodelling went on in 1643

The building was 'modernised' in 1720

The first courtyard, the main entry gate is just to the left.
The first courtyard, the main entry gate is just to the left.
The second gatehouse and drawbridge that seperates the fore courtyard from the main courtyard.
The second gatehouse and drawbridge that seperates the fore courtyard from the main courtyard.
The large round tower of the Main Keep.
The large round tower of the Main Keep.
Main keep seen from the fore-courtyard.
Main keep seen from the fore-courtyard.
The main encampment outside of the castle.
The main encampment outside of the castle.
The main encampment.
The main encampment.
The main encampment
The main encampment
The main encampment
The main encampment
The archer's camp. This tent was my home for three days.
The archer's camp. This tent was my home for three days.
Experimentational archery. This armour is a replica of 1450's Milanese armour, made of double layered springsteel.not tempered but modern springsteel nonetheless.
Experimentational archery. This armour is a replica of 1450's Milanese armour, made of double layered springsteel.not tempered but modern springsteel nonetheless.
Making sure the armour is secured tightly.
Making sure the armour is secured tightly.
Meeting the challenge, Magen Klomp of Fairbow Netherlands
Meeting the challenge, Magen Klomp of Fairbow Netherlands
SeconMagen and Mary, a 135Lbs Yew Bow. We haven't found the first arrow yet, it deflected off the steel and disappeared.
SeconMagen and Mary, a 135Lbs Yew Bow. We haven't found the first arrow yet, it deflected off the steel and disappeared.
The second arrow deflected on the steel (we found the marks) and went in through the side. No wound.
The second arrow deflected on the steel (we found the marks) and went in through the side. No wound.
Third time lucky?
Third time lucky?
Nope, the arrow shatters. The fourth shot results in another deflection into the other side of the armour. Still no wound.
Nope, the arrow shatters. The fourth shot results in another deflection into the other side of the armour. Still no wound.
Fifth shot
Fifth shot
Bingo!
Bingo!
Pleased as punch
Pleased as punch
Let's try a crossbow
Let's try a crossbow
A big one (500+ Lbs)
A big one (500+ Lbs)
Ready to shoot
Ready to shoot
Bottom hole: Warbow. Top dent: Crossbow
Bottom hole: Warbow. Top dent: Crossbow
The Bodkin arrowhead. Supah!
The Bodkin arrowhead. Supah!
A whole castle to play in. A very happy overgrown boy. Keep courtyard.
A whole castle to play in. A very happy overgrown boy. Keep courtyard.
Women's knickers! Even happier. Keep courtyard.
Women's knickers! Even happier. Keep courtyard.
Enemy ducks approaching, entrance to the keep
Enemy ducks approaching, entrance to the keep
More ducks, main gate.
More ducks, main gate.
Main gate, a quick turnabout. Ducks surprised.
Main gate, a quick turnabout. Ducks surprised.
Posing for pictures with visitors.
Posing for pictures with visitors.
My friend Christoph
My friend Christoph
Improving
Improving
Marcel, the weekend's cook
Marcel, the weekend's cook
Marcel behind his pots
Marcel behind his pots
Hoensbroek by night
Hoensbroek by night
Camp fires everywhere
Camp fires everywhere
Bit spooky
Bit spooky
The main keep.
The main keep.
Funny lights. Perfectly rational I'm sure.
Funny lights. Perfectly rational I'm sure.
Which is why it's moving around.
Which is why it's moving around.
and multiplying.
and multiplying.
Kids playing
Kids playing
Guard at the Main Keep
Guard at the Main Keep
Dutch Warbow Society DEMO-lition team preparing for battle
Dutch Warbow Society DEMO-lition team preparing for battle
Shouting at archers, just in case insulting them does work motivationally.
Shouting at archers, just in case insulting them does work motivationally.
Very pleased with results, but not showing it, tough ole drill sergeant that I am.
Very pleased with results, but not showing it, tough ole drill sergeant that I am.
With the first succesful round completed, thoughts turn to military conquest of western Europe.
With the first successful round completed, thoughts turn to military conquest of western Europe.
More shouting
More shouting
Orders obeyed
Orders obeyed
Results surveyed
Results surveyed
A kniggit passes our tent.
A kniggit passes our tent.
Wilting in the heat
Wilting in the heat
Back stage....
Back stage....
....after the tournament
....after the tournament
I taught the girl in the green dress how to shoot a bow. She loved it and was very good to boot. Trainer of Champions!
I taught the girl in the green dress how to shoot a bow. She loved it and was very good to boot. Trainer of Champions!
Archer's Salute (All the internet stuff about that not being true? Copied from one single source that was never verified. Clever. Really)
Archer's Salute (All the internet stuff about that not being true? Copied from one single source that was never verified. Clever. Really)
The Fairbow Crew after a long hot day.
The Fairbow Crew after a long hot day.
In the morning, our Belgian neighbours and my little archeress
In the morning, our Belgian neighbours and my little archeress
Belgian neighbours. early morning
Belgian neighbours. early morning
Main encampment, early morning
Main encampment, early morning
Main encampment, early morning
Main encampment, early morning
Main encampment, early morning
Main encampment, early morning
Main encampment, early morning
Main encampment, early morning
Main encampment, early morning
Main encampment, early morning
Looking at the fore-courtyard from the drawbridge between the keep and the main courtyard.
Looking at the fore-courtyard from the drawbridge between the keep and the main courtyard.
Children at play, gatehouse between fore-courtyard and main courtyard.
Children at play, gatehouse between fore-courtyard and main courtyard.
Children at play, gatehouse between fore-courtyard and main courtyard.
Children at play, gatehouse between fore-courtyard and main courtyard.
Children at play, gatehouse between fore-courtyard and main courtyard.
Children at play, gatehouse between fore-courtyard and main courtyard.
Children at play, gatehouse between fore-courtyard and main courtyard.
Children at play, gatehouse between fore-courtyard and main courtyard.
Children at play, gatehouse between fore-courtyard and main courtyard
Children at play, gatehouse between fore-courtyard and main courtyard
View of the bridge connecting keep and main courtyard from the fore-courtyard.
View of the bridge connecting keep and main courtyard from the fore-courtyard.
Corner tower in the herb garden. Taken from within the castle.
Corner tower in the herb garden. Taken from within the castle.
Entry to the herb garden
Entry to the herb garden
Corner tower in the herb garden, taken from the drawbridge at the main gate.
Corner tower in the herb garden, taken from the drawbridge at the main gate.
An SCA member from Michigan, fits in nicely. Main courtyard.
An SCA member from Michigan, fits in nicely. Main courtyard.
Musicians at Kolje's Spoon Shop. Main courtyard.
Musicians at Kolje's Spoon Shop. Main courtyard.
Kolje the Spoonmaker. Main courtyard.
Kolje the Spoonmaker. Main courtyard.
Kolje and musical visitors. Main courtyard.
Kolje and musical visitors. Main courtyard.
View into the main courtyard from the secondary back gate, which leads to the main encampment.
View into the main courtyard from the secondary back gate, which leads to the main encampment.
Boat ride on the moat.
Boat ride on the moat.
Boat on the moat.
Boat on the moat.
My homies at our tent
My homies at our tent
Prepping breaky
Prepping breaky
Eggs and BACON!
Eggs and BACON!
Belgian neighbours are awake
Belgian neighbours are awake
Standing guard, gatehouse between the the fore-courtyard and main courtyard.
Standing guard, gatehouse between the the fore-courtyard and main courtyard.
Standing guard, gatehouse between the the fore-courtyard and main courtyard.
Standing guard, gatehouse between the the fore-courtyard and main courtyard.
Patrolling the castle grounds
Patrolling the castle grounds
Patrolling the castle grounds
Patrolling the castle grounds
Patrolling the castle grounds
Patrolling the castle grounds
Patrolling the castle grounds
Patrolling the castle grounds
Punishment
Punishment
More guard duty
More guard duty
More guard duty
More guard duty
More guard duty
More guard duty
More guard duty
More guard duty
Medieval shower on a very hot day
Medieval shower on a very hot day
Medieval shower on a very hot day
Medieval shower on a very hot day
Medieval shower on a very hot day
Medieval shower on a very hot day
Medieval shower on a very hot day
Medieval shower on a very hot day
Medieval shower on a very hot day
Medieval shower on a very hot day
Medieval shower on a very hot day
Medieval shower on a very hot day
Medieval shower on a very hot day, much happier
Medieval shower on a very hot day, much happier
On the way to the tournament
On the way to the tournament
On the way to the tournament
On the way to the tournament
Tournament
Tournament
Tournament
Tournament

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Comments 15 comments

Marcel 4 years ago

Nice work Nils..... This gives a really good impression of how we see these events! And the pictures made are in the same high standards as only you can do...... Cheers!


Nils Visser profile image

Nils Visser 4 years ago from The Low Countries Author

Thanks Marcel


C. Swan 4 years ago

Really impressed by your story-telling capabilities with pictures. Me like


Nils Visser profile image

Nils Visser 4 years ago from The Low Countries Author

Ah, you recognize something of a pattern. Good, I did put some thought into that.


Guido 4 years ago

Always nice to read and very nice a big number of pictures!!


Jankees Braam 4 years ago

Nice, nice, nice!


Nils Visser profile image

Nils Visser 4 years ago from The Low Countries Author

Thanks, glad you enjoyed it.


klompy 4 years ago

nice report as always!


Stevie 4 years ago

Wish I could've been there! Pics look amazing!


Johnathan L Groom profile image

Johnathan L Groom 4 years ago from Bristol, CT

great pictures!


Imar 4 years ago

well done Nils


Nils Visser profile image

Nils Visser 4 years ago from The Low Countries Author

Thanks all.


epigramman profile image

epigramman 4 years ago

Hello Nils - what an epic hub and a labor of love you have presented to us here - it's like taking a trip into the past without leaving my armchair - I especially like the fetching lady with the bow and arrow - she can shoot me in the butt anyday with her 'love' arrow - lol lol - and yes this remarkable hub is a tribute to a time and a place in history highlighting the people who lived in and around this beautiful castle.

lake erie time ontario canada 4:14am and sending you warm wishes and good energy


Kristel Vankan 4 years ago

Looking good Nils! Makes me want to participate.... maybe in two years... Also very nice pictures! Cheers!


Nils Visser profile image

Nils Visser 4 years ago from The Low Countries Author

Thanks Epigramman and Kristel.

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