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During the sixties flower power in the Netherlands was symbolized by the famous Damslapers, a 'bunch of hippies camping out on Dam square'. Nowadays the square has lost a lot of it's former easygoing charm but it's still one of the focal points of the city. Not surprising, as Dam square is the physical center of the city ever since the dam was built to keep the Zuiderzee (Southern Sea) out. In the midst of the square is the Nationaal Monument, dedicated to the Dutch soldiers and members of the resistance who died during World War Two. To the west the square is flanked by the Royal Palace.
The Dam & The Monument to the liberation
The Dam is the most famous square in Holland. The fishing village which later transformed into Amsterdam was built right on this very spot in about 1270. It is the Dam that gave the city its name. In this square the "waterlanders" built the "dyke" (the dutch word for dam), blocking the flow of the Amstel and separating it from the IJ, a wide arm of the Zuidersee. In short, the Dam became the space in which the entire community met for official ceremonies and the most important events. In the Middle Ages, the Dam faced the sea, from where ships set sail for the North Sea. Today, the Dam is no longer the end part of Amsterdam, but the square is "inland".
The monument to the liberation in the Dam square is an imposing white obelisc decorated with alegorical figures, was put up in 1956 by J.Radeker, in rememberance for the Dutch victims of World War II. The monument encompasses twelve urns, each of which contains a handful or earth taken from eleven Dutch regions plus one from Indonesia.
Nowadays on the steps of the Monument in Dam square is the meeting place for some different types of characters. Maybe given the nearby of the Red Light District and the Coffee Shops (no, not the usual Cappucino and Expresso coffee shops), I saw a bunch of "happy" people listening to some strange music on their portable stereos.
The dominant feature of Dam Square is a 72 foot limestone obelisk unveiled on May 4 1956, Dutch Memorial Day, by then Queen Juliana as a memorial for Dutch soldiers killed in WWII, later expanded in scope to include all who died on war missions. Annually on May 4 the queen walks from the adjacent royal palace to place flowers. The central relief is entitled Peace and depicts four chained suffering male figures. To either side, two male sculptures honor the Dutch resistance one for the upper classes and one for working classes. Each has a dog to symbolize suffering and loyalty. Higher on the pillar is a female figure with a baby, for victory peace and a new life. Doves to symbolize peace are also seen scattered front and back.
The semicircular backdrop for the monument contains 12 urns containing soil from execution sites/war cemeteries in each of Holland's provinces and possessions.
Nothing comes without notoriety - the monument was the central gathering place for hippies in the 1970 era who took advantage of the tiered steps to put out their sleeping bags and camp beneath this tribute to liberty. When the government banned "dam-sleepers", a short lived riot ensued. The monument remains a central gathering place and draws multitudes of visitors.
This National Monument sits across from the Royal Palace and resembles a large phallus. I mean no disrespect, but I found it humorous being that it is in such an "open" society.......but, I digress.
It was unveiled by Queen Juliana of Orange on May 4, 1956 and is adorned with intricate sculptures and Dutch carvings!
- Historical Travel
- Arts and Culture
Monument op de Dam
The National Monument op de Dam is erected in 1956 in memory of the victims of World War II. Every year at 4 may Queen Beatrix celebrates national memorial day here by laying a wreath at the foot of the monument.
The monument was designed by : Ir. J.J.P. Oud, Johannes Anton Raedecker and Paul Grégo
The column is 22 meters high and made of white italian travertin. This natural stone is not very durable and the monument had to be restored drastically in 1997.
Just in the middle of Dam Square you'll find the Nationaal Monument - a huge obelisc built in 1956. Architect J. J .P. Oud and sculptor John Raedecker designed this 22m high obelisc, as an homage to the victims of WWII. The two lions that stand beneath are the heraldic symbol of Netherlands.
The National Monument, centre of commemorations
On the Dam square is a beautiful white monument. A huge cone formed column with a ring of statues in a circle surrounding it's foot. On the 4th of May this monument is the centre of the "dodenherdenking" (remembering the death), which grew from a day to recall all Dutch who died in the second worldwar to liberate the country to a commemoration of all that died for freedom anywhere in the world. In the sixties the monument was a central place for hippies and provo's, that from here came into the picture for the rest of the country. The Dam square always had a focuspoint in this fight and sigh for freedom.
If Amsterdam's core is a bicycle wheel (which is appropriate considering its shape and the number of bikes you'll see here), then Dam Square is the hub. It's a great central place to meet up with friends and it's also a major transportation hub. You'll find the Royal Palace here and this National War Memorial that was built after World War II.
National Monument - Dam Square
This monument, which commemorates Dutch victims from WW II is situated on Dam Square in the centre of Amsterdam. It is designed by J.J.P. Oud and made by the sculptor J. Raaedecker and is 22 m high.
In the wall behind the lions are urns with soil from each Dutch province and (former) colonies.
The National Monument - Monumento Nacional
The National Monument is a high obelisk in the Dam square, erected here after the II World War. This is a memorial to the victims of the war and a monument to the liberation of the country. There are some scupltures which depicts the war (four male figures), the peace (a woman and a child) and the resistence (two men with dogs). Inside the obeliks there are 12 urns. 11 of them with sand from the 11 Dutch provinces and the 12th with sand from the Ducth graveyard in Indonesia. The monument was inaugurated the 4th of May of 1956, the national day of remembrance, by the Queen Juliana and since then each year the Queen visit this monument, lay wreaths and everyone keep 2 minutes of silence. It's really hard to imagine all the suffer of a country in current times, when this monument is always full of people that meet here with their friends just to have fun...
El Monumento Nacional es un alto obelisco en la plaza Dam, erigido tras la II Guerra Mundial. Hay varias esculturas que representan la guerra (cuatro figuras masculinas), la paz (una mujer y un niño) y la resistencia (dos hombres con perros). Dentro del obelisco hay 12 urnas. 11 de ellas tienen tierra de las 11 provincias holandesas y la duodécima tierra del cementerio holandés en Indonesia. El monumento fue inaugurado por la Reina Juliana el 4 de mayo de 1956, día nacional del recuerdo. Desde entonces cada año la Reina visita este monumento, deposita flores y todo el mundo guarda dos minutos de silencio. Es verdaderamente duro imaginar estos momentos de sufrimiento del país hoy en día, cuando este monumento está siempre lleno de gente que queda con sus amigos para divertirse...
- Historical Travel
Well I don't know much about this monument except that this is at the centre of the Dam square, very noticeable and that this was the first thing that attracted my eyes as i entered the Dam Square. This white pillar is decorated with beautiful sculptures of human bodies. And yes, one tip. If you are tired after a long day's sightseeing and touring around, you can sit on the stairs here. I saw many people sitting there and relaxing.
L/66 De Dam (monument)
It was about 16:30 when we finally arrived on the Dam. Dila joined us there but martin_nl was still at work in Krasnapolsky (the hotel behind the monument on the photo).
It's not a particularly good photo because light was dying fast and shadows grew longer.
- Family Travel
Dam Square obelisk (national monument)
This monument was built in 1956 after the second world war. It is a 22 m high obelisk constructed by J.J.P. Oud. Today, it is a central meeting point and many people use the step to take a break. You can see street artists around the place, but also drug dealers. Anyway, the drug dealers should be no problem. Just tell them that you are not interested and enjoy a few minutes of break in the dynamic life of Amsterdam.
- Arts and Culture
Nobody ever missed the National Monument in centre of Amsterdam. Not that ancient it got opened at 1956 and a lot of youngsters and some lost elderlies love to sit down for whatever. Next to shoppingmall Bijenkorf, in front of Krasnapolsky Hotel and looking at Royal Palace at Dam Square ...
Its remarkable, white phallus (form of this obelisque) symbolizes war time, and every 4th of May at exactly 20.00 hrs the Queen or other Royal members will put a garland here to commemorate the World War II and its victims, to be seen directly at TV. See the statue figures ...
- Arts and Culture
- Historical Travel
- Hiking and Walking
The National Monument on the Dam Square
This monument is a memorial to the Dutch citizens who lost thier lives in the World War II. It was built in 1956 and its located on the east side of the Dam Square. Not that you can miss it. It was built was a WWII memorial but now its concidered a monument for peace. There is a crucified Jesus Christ. There are four male figures signifying WAR, The is a woman and child representing PEACE, and there are two men with dogs representing resistance. You can also see two lions off to the side of the monument repersenting the Netherlands. Behind the monument there are urns filled with soil for the different states of the Netherlands.
Knowing all this you get a different prospective of this monument.
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