March 11, 2018 Stories of the Past: Hugo's Statue & Kroonlantaarns

At 115 years old, the Beurs van Berlage building is full of amazing history — from its original design by renowned Dutch architect Hendrik Petrus Berlage to its former days as the Amsterdam Stock Exchange and everything in between, we’re excited to share pieces of our building’s rich history in a multi-part series:

Statues with stories: Who are you walking past every morning​?

Recognize this statue? You should. Hugo Grotius, better known as Hugo de Groot, was a Dutch lawyer and jurist credited for laying the foundations of international law. As a teenage prodigy, Hugo was imprisioned for taking part in the Dutch Republic's intra-Calvinist disputes, but he infamously escaped prison hidden in a book chest. Most of his writings were later written in French exile.

The new "Kroonlantaarns" — and their fascinating history

Did you notice the new kroonlantaarns (crown lanterns) outside our building? Do you know their history? Amsterdam Kroonlantaarns were first installed in 1883 with the imperial crown from Maximilian of Austria. The crown is a replica of the one atop the Westertoren (Westerkerk), created by famous Dutch architect Hendrick de Keyser in 1638.
The lanterns slowly disappeared throughout the years due to the introduction of electric lighting, but modern versions have been reintroduced in recent years. Now those in the Artist's Foyer can simply glance out the window to see this special piece of history.


Interested in the fascinating history of our building? You can buy the Beurs van Berlage book for €10 at the Meet Berlage reception desk.