Daily Archives: April 30, 2013

Today’s The Day

The City of Amsterdam will wake up to 101 gun shots fired from HRM Evertsen, while it’s sailing on the IJ waterway, that splits the city in two.

At 10 AM the abdication wil start
Koninklijk_Paleis_Amsterdam
The role of the Royal Palace Amsterdam in the succession to the throne
The Royal Palace has played a prominent role in the abdication and investitures of the Orange monarchs on several occasions.

Mozeszaal / Council Chamber
Traditionally, the abdication takes place in the Council Chamber, also known as the Mozeszaal. For the ceremony, a long table is placed in the hall, at which the monarch and the Prince or Princess of Orange are seated together with the invited dignitaries.
vroedschapskamer-paleis-op-de-dam
Original function
In the period when the building served as the Town Hall, this room functioned as a meeting room of the advisory body of the city council, the so-called ‘Vroedschap’. With the transformation of the Town Hall into palace in 1808, Louis Napoleon allocated this room as the Council of State Hall and as a concert hall.

plafondschildering-vroedschapskamer_645_425_sSymbolism
The Council Chamber is one of the most richly adorned rooms of the Royal Palace. The symbolism of the decorations represents wisdom and the provision of good council, which is entirely appropriate for a room which over the centuries – and still today – inspires people to take wise decisions and provide sound advice. The paintings above the fireplaces, Solomon’s prayer for wisdom by Govert Flinck and Jethro advising Moses by Jan van Bronckhorst, and the ceiling painting by Erasmus Quellinus, date from the seventeenth century. The wall-filling painting of Moses appointing the council of seventy elders and the trompe l’ oeil paintings were executed in 1737 and 1738 by Jacob de Wit and commissioned by the then sitting City Council.

Due to the various representations of Moses, the hall at the court received the name Mozeszaal.
salomo-paleis-op-de-dam_645_425_sBalcony
The occasion becomes truly palpable when the Royal Family appears on the balcony after the abdication. The balcony dates from 1808, the period in which Louis Napoleon was King of Holland. He had the balcony installed in order to show himself to his people. In 1938, the balcony was reduced to its present size and the railings were replaced by medallions. Placed in the gilded laurel wreaths is the Dutch Republic Lion, recognisable by its crown, sword and arrows. This lion refers to the coat of arms of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, in which the same lion is depicted in the shield.

Citizens Hall
After the investiture in the Nieuwe Kerk there will be a reception for the authorities and the members of the States General in the Citizens’ Hall of the Royal Palace. This hall in the centre of the Palace reflects the cosmos. In the floor one can see the western and northern hemisphere. At the time this was the largest public building in Europe.
burgerzaal-paleis-op-de-dam

At 2 PM the royals and their guests cross the street to De Nieuwe Kerk [New Church]
nieuwe-kerk
The New Church dates from the 15th century and was named to distinguish it from the ‘Old Church’, on the old side of Damrak. The church was dedicated in 1409 and put into use as a Roman Catholic church.

Many famous Dutch got there in the course of time to find their final resting place, sometimes with richly decorated tombs. The most famous is the tomb of naval hero Michiel de Ruyter. In 1578, the Catholic interior of the New Church was looted by iconoclasts and got a Protestant church function.

Three times the New Church was damaged by a blaze. The fire in 1645 also the interior became badly damaged. The church was restored in the original Gothic style and got among other things a new pulpit, a new organ and a brass choir screen.

orgel-nieuwe-kerk1 Organ
Famous is the monumental organ in the New Church, in which the best artists participated. The city of Amsterdam ordered in 1645 the construction of the organ, which consists of two floors, which architecture, sculpture and painting are accurately aligned. The organ was designed by Jacob van Campen.

The decoration is all about the music. On top of the organ is King David with his harp, along with two women who depict the art of singing and the art of playing. The painted shutters below show David’s anointment as king. If the shutters are open, the left shows the visible triumph of David after killing Goliath. On the right David plays harp for Saul. In the relief under the organ a cargo ship is found. An ancient symbol of Amsterdam.

koorhek-nieuwe-kerk2 Choir screen
The large brass choir screen was made after the fire of 1645 by the famous silversmith John Lutma and commissioned by the city of Amsterdam. The gate is topped by two lions with the arms of Amsterdam and the Amsterdam city seal, the cargo ship. The gate is richly decorated in baroque style, with shapes that are derived from nature and the human body. The six pilasters give the fence a sleek architectural structure.

Nederlandse-Regalia3 Regalia
During the inauguration ceremony are on the credence table for the stage regalia symbolizing the authority and dignity of the king. The regalia were made in 1840 for the inauguration of King William II and have since been used in any inauguration.

The crown symbolizes the sovereignty of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and represents the dignity of the head of state. In the Netherlands there is no coronation, but an inauguration and therefore the king/queen never wears the crown on his or her head. The costs for making the crown were at that time in 1400 guilders, and it is made of gilded silver, with colored stones and pearls.

Besides the crown there’s also the scepter [symbol of the authority of the king] and the orb [symbol for the territory of the king]. Furthermore, there is on the table a copy of the Dutch Constitution and now for the first time, the Charter of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

Two other regalia are held by two senior officials during the ceremony. These are the imperial sword, which stands for the power of the Crown, and the Gonfalon of State, bearing the heradic colors of the kingdom.

eedaflegging-beatrix4 Stage
On a stage in front of the brass choir screen King Willem-Alexander will take the oath, as Queen Beatrix did in 1980. [photo] Behind the new king and queen are courtiers appointed by the king.