City Museum "De Hofstadt" Diest

City Museum "De Hofstadt" Diest


Grote Markt 1

3290 Diest


P 0032 (0)13 35 32 09



The Municipal Museum De Hofstadt is housed in the cellars of three medieval buildings: de Hofstadt, the aldermen's building or town hall, and ‘huize den Oord'. De Hofstadt originally belonged to the lords of Diest but was sold to the town by Thomas II, lord of Diest, in 1395 and integrated into the town hall. Between 1726 and 1735 the town hall, den Oord and the front section of de Hofstadt made way for the town hall as we know it today. In 1874 the rear section of de Hofstadt was also demolished. The cellars continued to be used as service areas for many years but gradually fell into disrepair.

Between 1955 and 1957 the cellars were restored and on the memorable date of August 17th 1957, Diest Municipal Museum opened its doors. The bulk of its eclectic collection derives from loans from the O.C.M.W. (Municipal Centres for Heath Care and Social Welfare), various churches, guilds and chambers of rhetoric, but it also includes gifts from private individuals. It contains not just paintings and sculptures, but also decorative objects, textiles, documents, furniture and a very fine collection of silver.

All the objects in the collection have a link with the town of Diest and so provide an enlightening picture of a culture steeped in history. Between 2008 and 2009 the museum was completely refurbished. The new museum is called ‘de Hofstadt', after the earlier building belonging to the lords of Diest.

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