MIDDELBURG (Dutch: ( listen )) is a municipality and a city in the
* 1 History * 2 Notable locals
* 3 Geography
* 3.1 Climate
* 4 Gallery
* 5 Culture and recreation
* 5.1 Cultural institutions * 5.2 Theaters and concerthalls * 5.3 Sightseeing * 5.4 Sports
* 6 Transportation * 7 Twin cities * 8 In Popular Culture
* 9 References
* 9.1 Literature
* 10 External links
YEAR POP. ±% P.A.
1398 6,300 —
1576 7,000 +0.06%
1600 20,000 +4.47%
1675 27,000 +0.40%
1739 25,000 −0.12%
1795 17,687 −0.62%
Source: Lourens additional construction continued through the Middle Ages.
From 1559.05.12 to 1603,
Samuel Ben Israel, son of
Menasseh Ben Israel , is buried in
About a third of the old city centre was devastated by bombs and fire in the early phases of World War II, on May 17, 1940, it is still not sure whether it were German bombers or French artillery. The town was captured and liberated by British troops during Operation Infatuate on 5 November 1944. After the War, as much of the destroyed part of the old town center was rebuilt and restored along pre-War lines as possible. The city's archives, however, had been incinerated during the German bombardment.
The painter Pieter Gaal , (1769–1819) was born and, after traveling over Europe to paint, settled and died here.
Another well-known citizen of
Dutch topographic map of Middelburg, as of Sept. 2014.
Aside from the city of Middelburg, the municipality also includes several population centres, including:
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The climate is a maritime climate (Cfb) with mild winters and cool summers. Rain falls throughout the year, reaching its height at the end of the summer and in the autumn; spring tends to be somewhat drier. The climate has warmed since 1988; winters are even milder than they used to be and are extremely mild for the high latitude (51,5 degrees). Winters are dark and days are short, with the sun only appearing above the horizon for seven to eight hours a day. Mild winters tend to be particularly gloomy, with barely any sun and lots of wind and rain. Cold winters tend to be snowy and freezing but also sunny, with people skating on the canals near the city.
Rainfall is pretty even throughout the year; about 810 mm (32 in) of
precipitation falls in an average year (1981-2010, source KNMI ). This
has risen steeply in recent years, but has been on the rise since at
least 1900. Global warming has had a regional effect on the nearby
North Sea, which has become 2 °C (4 °F) warmer in the past 50 years.
Thus coastal regions are experiencing a steeper rise in rainfall than
areas in the east of the country.
The climate is good for agriculture. Grain, sugar beets, potatoes, corn, and grassland for horses and cows are the most common sight. Apple and pear trees are also cultivated. The city contains all sorts of broad-leafed and coniferous species, which do well in the cool climate. Near the abbey complex there a couple of beautiful red beeches. Some large conifers can be found in the city centre as well (Norway spruce, Taxus and Dawn Redwood). Spruces in particular tend to get too big for gardens and are cut down after a few years. At Ter Hooge, a castle to the west of the city, there is a small beech forest with some oak and some specimen trees of Norway and Serbian spruce, Sequoia Sepmpervirens (redwood), Caucasian fir, and larch trees.
In detail there is a marked difference between
Vlissingen (KNMI data)
and Middelburg, especially in warm summers and even more in cold
winters or during colder spells. Especially minimum temperatures year
round tend to be much lower than in
Vlissingen (Flushing). The minima
The KNMI station from Vlissingen was placed from the current, shore position to 3 km inland (just south of Middelburg) from 1948 to 1957. To the surprise of the meteorologist, temperatures were much lower. To such an extend that there could be no correction calculated for it. On occasion, these differences can amount 10°C. Especially during clear summer nights after hot, dry days.
The cold record was easily broken in that short period and went from
−16 to −20 °C (3 to −4 °F) in 1956. To give an indication
about how remarkable this was, the chief of the KNMI station did not
believe this value and checked the thermometer himself again. In later
years, calibrated measurements just 2 kilometers northeast of
The reason for these differences are the distance to the sea,
low-lying areas cooling and warming easily, less wind and longer and
deeper snowcovers in winter, with snow remaining fresher because of no
thaw, making it more radiative. This difference is not confined to
Vlissingen, also Wilhelminadorp KNMI 20 km east of
Another thing that also can be seen on KNMI charts is the fact that
snow cover is bigger and last a lot longer in
The biggest snow cover in recent years was 20–27 cm in February 2003 and December 2010 and the highest ever may have been no more than 35 cm or so in 1957 or 1958. Snow cover measurements tend to be difficult because many times they coincide with a lot of wind, piling snow up to dunes of a meter or so in one place with bare soil next to it.
In summer, temperature differences are big at night but less so at
day. In general though, in warm conditions
Again, compared to climate charts of
Vlissingen we will rarely see a
big difference. That is because of a peculiarity: the seabreeze comes
from the north. This means that
Vlissingen can remain 5 to 7 °C (41
to 45 °F) cooler all day with an east or southeast wind. Meanwhile,
much warmer air is situated to the north of the city (Middelburg). The
incoming northerly sea breeze first pushes the hot air over Vlissingen
giving a short sharp rise in temperature followed by a subsequent fall
afterwards. Also; the KNMI station is situated with the city surround
it to the north, giving the mercury a slight extra push when the sea
breezes kicks in. In the average maximum the duration of the maximum
is not noted, the difference is there anyway. Highest temperatures
recorded in recent years in
Note that these are details and the climate of
Zeeland and the whole
Other exceptional weather events can be the occasional supercell
thunderstorm (may be one or two per year) which rarely produce
tornadoes. In recent history only one tornado event (August 1994) went
just southwest of the city leaving a trail of damage from Ritthem to
Somewhat frequent events are noctilucent clouds near the pinnacle of summer, which can only be seen outside of the city. These are ice clouds which are situated much above normal cloud layers at 80 km or so. They have a neon-blue like, beautiful appearance. Another astronomical phenomenon is the Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights). These in fact occur every year on a few days, but rarely are spectacular. Once in every 10–12 years, the auroral oval can be pushed even south of the city and a corona can be seen. The cloudy climate prevents sightings on many occasions, so spectacular displays as said are pretty year and tend to focus near sunspot maxima on the sun.
View at the Lange Jan (from the station) *
The Londense Kaai *
Near towngate (the Kuiperspoort) *
Monumental building: the Kloveniersdoelen *
Middelburg, windmill: molen de Hoop *
Middelburg, windmill: de Seismolen
CULTURE AND RECREATION
When William of Orange decided to found the first university in the
* Zeeuws Museum * SBKM De Vleeshal * Zeeuws Archief * Zeeuwse Bibliotheek * Centrum Beeldende Kunst (nl)
THEATERS AND CONCERTHALLS
* Schouwburg * Concertzaal Zeeland * Spiegeltheater * Minitheater * Filmtheater Schuttershof * UCR Stand up comedy theatre
* The Abbey * Kuiperspoort * The "Lange Jan" * City Hall * Oostkerk * Damplein
* Vilvoorde , Belgium * Nagasaki , Japan *