Monday, July 29, 2013

Clervaux, Luxembourg: the Church and the Castle

So, after seeing that incredible, painted church in Eschfeld, Germany (last post), we drove 9 miles (15 km) to Clervaux, Luxembourg.  It was the last day of our long weekend and we just wanted to see some highlights on our way home.

In those 9 miles we drove through the forest and open fields, like the rest of the trip.
We always set the Tom-Tom to the back roads so that we can see the real countryside.
You know how much I love to catch the churches...and the weathervanes!

As we drove into Clervaux, there she sat:  the Church of Saints Cosmas and Damian, from 1910.
Can you imagine that as the parish church for a town of 2000 inhabitants?

 You can imagine the thrill of anticipation after getting out of the car and walking up to it.

Once inside, it was actually much plainer than we expected.
Is that possible?

But's only 100 years old!
See how spoiled we've become by the centuries of art attached to the huge, old cathedrals!

As we walked out of the church, straight ahead of us stood the nearby Clervaux Castle from the 12th century:

 Because the sun was shining on the front of the church, we first saw the castle in shadow.
But as we walked around it, it, too, caught the sun on such a gorgeous day.
It stands 365 meters (approx. 1200 ft), overlooking the town.

It was destroyed by fire in the Battle of the Bulge during WWII,
but has been completly rebuilt.

Speaking of WWII, there's a war museum there full of wartime memorabilia.
The only piece I took a picture of was the WHY? poster.
WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY?????  A gazillion WHYs.

Outside in the courtyard stands this US Sherman tank.
Did you know that the German tanks had more destructive power
but these Sherman tanks were so much faster, they somehow were able to elude the Germans.
Still, there was much loss of life, including the Americans.

Everywhere you go in Europe where these war memorials exist,
the Americans are thanked profusely.  It's actually very touching.

Did I tell you it was HOT HOT HOT?  The hottest day of our summer to date at 30 ºC (86º F).
So we really splurged!  Normally we're satisfied with one scoop of ice cream on a cone.
But not that day.  As Astrid says, I'm making a beer drinker of her.  HA!
The thing is, how can you live in Europe and NOT drink beer, especially on a hot day!
Did you know that beer glasses match the beer you're drinking?  Yup.
Bofferding beer from Luxembourg since 1764!

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Switch gears now till my next Luxembourg post to catch up on my newest Vision and Verb about Dutch idioms:

"It's like an angel peeing on my tongue!"
If that doesn't pique your curiosity, what will?!


  1. Backroads and beer! Life doesn't get any better girls!!

    1. HA! If anyone knows that, Robin, it's YOU! Thank you.

  2. Robin is right, there is nothing better than back-roads and beer and wine.
    Clervaux brought back memories, I went there with my mom and dad when I was 12 years old. Being in that part of Belgium and Luxemburg was great, I do love the hills and the woods.
    Those 4 days were a treat and it taste of more.....(grin)
    Wonderful collages, it is amazing what we saw in such a little time.

    1. I wasn't sure if THIS was the place you had visited when you were 12, so thanks for reminding me. And your mom was also there in the early 40s, so you can understand why she liked it so much.

      We packed a lot into those 4 days, yes, and it does leave a taste for what we'll be able to do on your 3-day weekends next year. Something to look forward to! Bedankt, MLMA.

  3. You leave me contemplating my dinner beer and awaiting explanation of your final quote. The 1910 church I thought looked older for its simplicity. The towers have that strange mix of Victorian and Gothic that often leaves me puzzling over vintage. The center section is Romanesque and yet it all works because of the roof forms. Very striking building! Thank you especially for taking me there.

    We have a Garmin with a decidedly British accent named "Gidget," but I always leave her set to shortest distance as that leads to the most back roads. She is a lady of saintly patience who never complains more than to say, "recalculating," though I occasionally note a bit of irritation in her tone. Alas, occasionally the roads turn to forest before the other end is reached though Gidget would for ahead thoughtlessly. Here in New England, every town green seems to have a tank, a cannon, or a helicopter.

    Love that witch wind vane.

    1. You know much more about architectural styles than I do, Ted. All I know is what I like or don't. Usually there's nothing I don't like...just some things I like more than others.

      Here in Dutchland the shortest route on TomTom will always be on the highways because most of the back roads are over the dikes, where you can't drive too fast. But that's what I LOVE about them. You have more time to see everything! Our TomTom lady (we need to name her!) often tells us to try to turn around if we can. But we just tell her to shut up, because we know what we're doing. HA! Actually, we joke about how she has saved our marriage. :)

  4. The Church of Saints stations of the cross look quite interesting. Less is better here, I think. And it still is more than some modern churches (I hate some of the newer ones in America)

    Beer and Ice cream? Love it!

    1. I can't believe I'm saying this, Margaret, but we have gotten so used to dark and loud and "gawdy" in some of these huge cathedrals that when they are simple and understated like this, we almost don't know what to do with them.

      And yes, on a hot day, nothing beats a cold beer and ice cream. :)

  5. Thanks so much for the nice blog and pics. My maternal ancestors were from Luxembourg. Nice to be able to see some of their country. I traveled there in 1980 but I did not get a chance to see much more than driving through the country.

    1. Thank you so kindly, Sally, not only for stopping by but commenting here. That means a lot to me. We LOVED Luxembourg. You can be proud of your family history from there.