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from The Telegraph

Five free things to do in Brussels

The best free things to do in Brussels, from window-shopping in the Galeries Royales St-Hubert to strolling across the cobbles of the Grand-Place. Window-shop in the Galeries Royales St-Hubert Europe’s first covered shopping gallery opened in 1847 and today houses a collection of 54 upmarket stores – clothes, books, leather goods and the like – beneath vaulted glass ceilings.

Woodcut by Bernard Brussel-Smith - S From the book Sing of America. Folk tunes collected and arranged by Tom Scott. Text by Joy Scott. Wood engravings by Bernard Brussel-Smith. New York: T. Y. Crowell Co., 1947. M1629.S33 S5 (Crossett Library Bennington College)

November. Leaves from the Hennessy Hours, fol. 11v. Illuminated by Simon Bening. Bruges, mid-1530s. Collection: Brussels, BibliothËque royale de Belgique, Ms. II 158. Image from the book Illuminating the Renaissance: The Triumph of Flemish Manuscript Painting in Europe, by J. Paul Getty Trust (2003). Image pg 468, Info pg 467. Getty Publications. Los Angeles, CA, USA. Paperback edition. ISBN #0-8923-6704-0.

Claude Marie Paul Dubufe (1790-1864) — Portrait of Louise of Orléans, the first Queen of the Belgians, années 1830: Royal Collection of Belgium (818x1222)

The spirit of ingenuity and engineering is not dead in Belgium, as Antoine Hotermans illustrates with this homemade frame. Viewed as a collection of individual parts, it may seem a little rough around the edges but as a whole, it’s a gritty, industrial machine from the streets of Brussels.

Reliquary Bust of a Female Saint, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Accession No. 59.70, South Netherlandish origin, 1520-1530. Hispano-Flemish for sure! The looped braids show up occasionally in Spanish art.

1931 Chanel, Sequin dress - Design by Gabrielle Coco Chanel - Worn by Gloria Swanson - Vintage 1930's Chanel - Musée du Costume et de la Dentelle