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Everard t'Serclaes

Lord of the Manor of Cruyckembourg (c. 1320 - 1388). Everard t'Serclaes was Lord of the Manor of Cruyckembourg (near Ternat) and a leading citizen of Brussels. When Duke John III of Brabant died in 1355, Louis, Count of Flanders occupied the city, hoping to force Duchess Jeanne, John’s heiress to cede it to him. On 24 October 1356, Serclaes led a surprise night assault on the city walls and drove Louis’s troops out of the city. Serclaes went on to be elected a city alderman five times. In 1388, having successfully resisted an attempt by Sweder, Lord of the Manor of Gaesbeek, to suppress many of the privileges enjoyed by Brussels, Serclaes was attacked by Sweder’s men and his tongue was cut out. He died of his wounds shortly afterwards. During the restoration of the Grand’ Place and the Town Hall under Mayor Charles Buls, figures of Serclaes and Sweder were added to the facade of the Town Hall, and a statue of Serclaes on his deathbed by Jules Dillens was installed under the loggia of L’Etoile a restored guild house next to the Town Hall. Shortly after the statue’s unveiling in 1905, a “legend” developed that those who rubbed the statue could make a wish or would have good luck, and this became so widespread that the arm of the statue has remained bright and shiny and has had to be repaired on several occasions.

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