Many rituals have a religious origin and a long history, but we invent new rituals in our modern society too. Rituals add structure to a certain phase in life, provide a sense of connection and are interactive. They can offer a handhold in difficult circumstances. The trust is in the act itself, without necessarily being linked to any particular religion. A group of friends, a family… they come up with their own rituals.
‘The lonely funeral’ is a literary and social project in which poets write a personal poem for lonely deceased people and read it out at the funeral. It is a final salute to people who generally fell by the wayside during their lives and are then buried without the presence of family or friends. There is only the small ritual: the coffin on trestles, the flowers and the poem.
At the centre of the city is the Belfry where, very early on, swinging bells were installed to break up the day: from the opening and closing of the city gates to the hours when trading in the market was permitted. From 1523, the carillon could play songs automatically and, a little later, Bruges hired a carillonneur… music for everyone! The present instrument dates from 1741 and was cast in Bruges by Joris Dumery.
Supplied by Concertgebouw Brugge.
In 2020, Bruges Erfgoedcel, Intangible Heritage Workshop, the Diversity Department of the City of Bruges, FMDO, Vormingplus for the Bruges Region and HuisvandeMens Bruges collected stories of people from Bruges with different ideologies on their vision for saying goodbye and the rituals that go with it. They were brought together in the brochure ‘Time for farewell’.
Supplied by Erfgoedcel Brugge.
Manuscript 008: this thirteenth-century miniature drawing is part of a convolute (a number of manuscripts in one volume), including a liturgical calendar and a psalter. A psalter or psalm-book is a prayer book containing Old Testament psalms. In the Middle Ages, it was an extremely popular book, used mainly by the clergy during daily prayers. The manuscript, made in Ghent, is beautifully decorated.
Supplied by Bibliotheek Brugge.
Pewter chalice from grave VI (Bruges Mariastraat Church of Our Lady), the grave of a priest. The chalice consists of a circular, almost flat foot with above it an almost cylindrical stem (narrowing slightly towards the top). Attached to this, at about half height, is a disc-shaped handle (or nodus), and a bowl (or cuppa) with a hole in it. Some clear rotation ridges can be seen on the outside of the chalice, but there are no decorations or marks. The chalice was covered with a pewter paten, a kind of plate that belongs to the vasa sacra of the liturgical vessels in the Catholic Church. During the Mass, the host is placed on the paten and later broken on it.
Supplied by Raakvlak