Manneken Pis, Brussels

3 out of 5 stars 3 Stars - 164 Reviews

Corner of Rue de l' Etuve and Rue du Chêne

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  • scottishvisitor's Profile Photo

    All this fuss for a little wee!!

    by scottishvisitor Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    The Little Boy who pulls the crowds
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    The Manneken-Pis is as famous in Brussels as its Frites, Waffles and Beer. To say he is a bit small is a very big understatement! I was a bit surprised and disappointed that he hadn't been dressed up for Easter. Looking around the small streets here we noticed Santa climbing up some buildings so it is possible the powers that be hadn't got around to it. Don't let the crowds around this very small boy put you off taking his picture - just use your zoom lense and you'll be fine.

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  • Martin_S.'s Profile Photo

    Manneken Pis....on who

    by Martin_S. Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Manneken Pis, Brussels, Belgium
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    Okay, be careful on a windy day or the Manneken Pis may do it on YOUR HEAD...
    The website below is the best place to find out about the history of this little pisser.
    It also has a map with directions on how to find it.
    We visited with our friends Gillian and Guy, but if not for their guidance we may never have found this small object that is so well known.

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  • robertgaz's Profile Photo

    Mannekin Pis

    by robertgaz Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Mannekin Pis

    I think that most people are probably familiar with Manneken Pis which is a famous Brussels statue in a very unimposing street in an out of the way corner of Brussels.

    He's a small bronze sculpture depicting a little boy urinating into the fountain's basin. There are many legends about this little man (and believe me he is quite small) including that he put out the fuse of explosive charges set in the city walls by urinating on it thus saving the city.

    Personally, I think that the statue was at one time used to dispense liquor.

    Since the mid-1990s, the Manneken has had a female equivalent, Jeanneke Pis.

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  • UKDaisy's Profile Photo

    Keep an eye out or you'll miss it!

    by UKDaisy Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    The Manneken Pis is a major tourist attraction in Brussels but it's very easy to miss it as it's tiny (I'm referring to the statue!). Therefore, you really do have to keep your eyes peeled when you're looking for it. Follow the direction signs from the Grand Place.

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  • xuessium's Profile Photo

    See little boy peeing!!

    by xuessium Updated Apr 4, 2011

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    MannekenPis

    And man, were there squeaks and squeals among the folks (I happened to run into an overly excited bunch of Japanese tourists) who were actually queueing up not only to see a little boy peeing, but also photograph the act too!

    Imagine this: In the real world, all of us would probably be hauled to jail for being paedophilics!!

    There are many legends attached to the origin of this statue. One claimed that a rich bourgeois who had lost his only son in a crowd during a popular festivities had the statue made to commemorate the happy occasion when he found his son 5 days later at the corner of Etuve Street, doing exactly what the statue was doing. Another legend claims that the statue was made to commemorate the heroics of a little boy who saved the city from its enemies from arson by extinguishing a wick. Regardless of its true origins, it was in 1619 that Jerome Duquesnoy Senior was entrusted by the Brussels tax collectors to make a statue in bronze of their most famous citizen. So it other words, little boy has been peeing for close to 400 years now.

    My buddy informed me that from time to time, visiting dignitaries will dress the boy up in various costumes which makes a welcome change from his usual naked glory.

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  • Ewingjr98's Profile Photo

    Mannekin Pis

    by Ewingjr98 Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Mannekin Pis
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    Mannekin Pis is the most famous site in all of Brussels. It is a statue of a 2 foot tall boy pissing into a pool of water. Originally built in the 1400s, the current statue dates from 1619. Many legends exist as to its origin.... some say it was built by a gracious king who found the boy pissing on his palace to stop a fire from spreading. Others say it was built by a vengeful king who found the boy pissing on his palace because the boy didn't like the king.

    Whatever the origin, all I can say is "Manhecanpiss!".

    Manneken is a Dutch word that literally means 'little man' and is the basis for the English and French word Mannequin, or dummy.

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  • cosmogypsy's Profile Photo

    about a statue of a boy

    by cosmogypsy Updated Apr 4, 2011
    Pis Mannekin

    How can anyone visit Belgium, no wait Europe, without seeing the Pis Mannekin ?

    There are a lot of legends surrounding this statue, but I think that the Belgians just wanted a good laugh. And laugh they can considering countries from all over the world send clothing to dress up this little statue of a boy peeing!!!

    The sad thing is that it used to serve alcohol...Perhaps it is a good idea that it doesn't now.

    The funny thing is that I actually made a trip to Brussels just to see this nice statue. After that, I headed on to Brugge, which is a smaller city but very picturesque.

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  • gordonilla's Profile Photo

    Now, don't get excited!

    by gordonilla Written Mar 6, 2011
    Manneken Pis (1)
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    As with so many well known, statues, you can be underwhelmed by what you find. This famous statutes is small and out of the way. However it is always a focus of tourist cameras.

    The city museum also has an extensive collection of different statues in different costumes.

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  • GrantBoone's Profile Photo

    Manneken Pis,

    by GrantBoone Written Jan 26, 2011

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    The statue of a little boy is a major tourist attraction in the city.There are many legends about the Manneken. According to one of them a little boy had watered against the door of a witch who lived where the fountain now stands. The witch was so angry that she turned the little boy into a statue.

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  • clareabee's Profile Photo

    Blink and you will miss it!

    by clareabee Written Oct 29, 2010

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    ok you have to go and see this but i must warn you that unless there a huge crowds around (which there normally is!) you could quite easily miss this! - I don't honestly know what I was expecting, perhaps something a little bigger :-) But it did made me laugh , as it highlights the Belgium peoples sense of humour!

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  • Crazywoman's Profile Photo

    The small guy with the big attraction

    by Crazywoman Written May 29, 2010

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    Manneken Pis is, in spite of it's small size, the most popular tourist attraction in Brussels. The famous statue of a small boy urinating has many legends. The legends vary from a small boy getting lost and being found by one of his parents while urinating on a street corner to the boy saving the city from both invation and fire.

    The statue itself is a 60 cm high bronze statue that was designed by Jerome Duquesnoy and placed there around 1618. Before this statue was put in place, there have been other Mannekens in the place from as early as 1388.

    Manneken has several hundred costumes and his outfit is changed several times a week. The schedule for his outfits is hanging on the railings next to the statue. While I was in Brussels I was very happy to see him celebrate the Norwegian constitutional day (see the picture). Some of the costumes can be seen in an exhibition in the city musem.

    Being the most popular inhabitant in Brussels, I guess the statue is something you just have to visit during your stay in Brussels It is very centrally located and you can get there easily with a short walk off Grand Place. The time consuming part will be getting through all the other tourist to get a good shot at him.

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  • marielexoteria's Profile Photo

    Manneken Pis

    by marielexoteria Updated Mar 15, 2010

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    Manneken Pis

    Manneken Pis is a fountaing with a statue of a child peeing. The statue is dressed in costumes according to a schedule, and most of the costumes are on exhibition at Musée de Ville at Grand Place. In our case, he (it) had a black and red costume, with a golden hat and a medal.

    There's several legends as of why this statue came about, going from little boys putting out fires with their urine to boys peeing on a tree...

    Personally, I thought the statue was too little...or rather that in pictures it looks bigger than it actually is, so during high season I guess there's a lot of cameras trying to get that perfect shot but we went off season and had no problem getting a picture.

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  • MaheshSamtani's Profile Photo

    MANNEKEN PIS

    by MaheshSamtani Written Feb 21, 2010

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    The little bronze statue

    I had heard a lot about the Manneken Pis and was surely on my list of things to see while in Brussels. It is located just behind the Grand Place and was slightly disappointed when I saw it. I was probably expecting to see much more.

    It is said that this statue was cast in bronze on the orders of the city council in 1619. many legends have been attached to the figure who is said to be representing the rebellious and teasing nature of the locals.

    Copies of the statue are available in many colors and is by far the best selling souvenir of the city.

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  • jumpingnorman's Profile Photo

    See what the Manneken Pis is wearing today...

    by jumpingnorman Written Mar 27, 2009

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    Manneken Pis, peeing boy, Brussels, Belgium

    Manneken Pis, meaning "pee man" in Dutch, is a very famous Brussels landmark. It is also known in French as the petit Julien.

    It is a nice little bronze statue of a boy urinating into a basin, and the remarkable thing is that there is a non-profit association (The Friends of Manneken-Pis) which changes its clothes regularly in ceremonies with brass band music!

    We specifically brought our three year old twins to the Manneken Pis to see who was taller...the twins were! And at the time we visited, the statue was wearing some kind of military outfit (it has hundreds of costumes donated from all over the world).

    You won't get lost looking for it - just follow the crowds along the streets of Brussels!

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  • mikey_e's Profile Photo

    The Pissing Boy

    by mikey_e Written Jan 4, 2009

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    Crowds bigger than the boy
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    I think that I've already said this in the opening page to my Brussel tips, but my memory of this famous Brussels landmark was rather, well, exaggerated. That is, I was right that it was a famous and well-known fountain in the centre of Brussels, but what I didn't remember correctly was the size of the boy. He is, in effect, quite small, and is really more of a spout at the corner of two streets rather than a full-sized fountain. This was made even more apparent when it took me 5 minutes just to get through the crowd of noisy teenagers on a school or camp trip to Brussels - the fact that they could block off all view to the fountain was pretty telling of its size. Nevertheless, ths is something that you must see no matter how short your stay in Brussels. The statue that you will see is not infact the original bronze one installed in 1695, as that one, which survived wars and sieges, went mysteriously missing in 1960. Today there is a replica of the original in his stead. The Pissing Boy (or Manneken pis in Flemish) is usually dressed up for specific holidays. This is not some sort of prank but rather a well-observed tradition that sees the little statue made up to be Santa Claus or Count Dracula depending on the season.

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