Thorn, Netherlands

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Former municipality of the Netherlands
1292 – 2006 Blank.png
Thorn flag.png Thorn gemeentewapen.svg
FlagCoat of arms
Location of Thorn LocatieThorn.png
Location of Thorn
Former municipality of Thorn, shown within Limburg
Capital Thorn, Netherlands
  DisestablishedDecember 31, 2006

Thorn ( Loudspeaker.svg   pronunciation  , Limburgish : Thoear) is a town in the municipality of Maasgouw, in the Dutch province of Limburg. It lies on the rivers Meuse and Witbeek. It is known as 'the white village' for its white-washed brick houses in the centre of town.

Town settlement that is bigger than a village but smaller than a city

A town is a human settlement. Towns are generally larger than villages but smaller than cities, though the criteria to distinguish them vary considerably between different parts of the world.

Maasgouw Municipality in Limburg, Netherlands

Maasgouw is a municipality in the Dutch province of Limburg. It is located on both banks of the river Meuse southwest of the city of Roermond. It was formed in a merger of the former municipalities of Heel, Maasbracht and Thorn on 1 January 2007.

Netherlands Constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Europe

The Netherlands is a country located mainly in Northwestern Europe. The European portion of the Netherlands consists of twelve separate provinces that border Germany to the east, Belgium to the south, and the North Sea to the northwest, with maritime borders in the North Sea with Belgium, Germany and the United Kingdom. Including three island territories in the Caribbean Sea—Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba— it forms a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The official language is Dutch, but a secondary official language in the province of Friesland is West Frisian.


The Daalstraat (daalstreet) in Thorn Fahrrader in der Daalstraat.jpg
The Daalstraat (daalstreet) in Thorn


The abbey church of Thorn Flirrende Hitze uber Thorn.jpg
The abbey church of Thorn

First, the region of Thorn was a swamp nearby the Roman road between Maastricht and Nijmegen. But the region had been drained and about 975, Bishop Ansfried of Utrecht founded a Benedictine nunnery. This monastery developed since the 12th century into a secular stift or convent. The principal of the stift was the abbess. She was assisted by a chapter of at most twenty ladies of the highest nobility.

Maastricht City and municipality in Limburg, Netherlands

Maastricht is a city and a municipality in the southeast of the Netherlands. It is the capital and largest city of the province of Limburg. Maastricht is located on both sides of the Meuse, at the point where the Jeker joins it. It is adjacent to the border with Belgium.

Nijmegen City and municipality in Gelderland, Netherlands

Nijmegen is a city in the Dutch province of Gelderland, on the Waal river close to the German border.

A bishop is an ordained, consecrated, or appointed member of the Christian clergy who is generally entrusted with a position of authority and oversight.

Steetview of Thorn Street in the "White Town" of Thorn.JPG
Steetview of Thorn

Previously the abbess and the chapter were endowed with religious tasks but, since the 12th century, they served secular matters and formed the government of a truly sovereign miniature principality, the smallest independent state in the German Holy Roman Empire, approximately 250 x 250 metres. Besides Thorn, Ittervoort, Grathem, Baexem, Stramproy, Ell, Haler and Molenbeersel belonged to this principality. After the French invasion in the winter of 1794–95 and the formal abolition in 1797 made an end to the existence of the abbey and the principality of Thorn; Thorn was first part of the department of Meuse-Inférieure, and after the Vienna Congress it became a municipality of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands.

A principality can either be a monarchical feudatory or a sovereign state, ruled or reigned over by a monarch with the title of prince, princess or by a monarch with another title considered to fall under the generic meaning of the term prince.

Sovereign state political organization with a centralized independent government

In international law, a sovereign state, sovereign country, or simply state, is a nonphysical juridical entity that is represented by one centralized government that has sovereignty over a geographic area. International law defines sovereign states as having a permanent population, defined territory, one government, and the capacity to enter into relations with other sovereign states. It is also normally understood that a sovereign state is neither dependent on nor subjected to any other power or state.

Germany Federal parliamentary republic in central-western Europe

Germany, officially the Federal Republic of Germany, is a country in Central and Western Europe, lying between the Baltic and North Seas to the north, and the Alps to the south. It borders Denmark to the north, Poland and the Czech Republic to the east, Austria and Switzerland to the south, France to the southwest, and Luxembourg, Belgium and the Netherlands to the west.

See also

Coordinates: 51°10′N5°50′E / 51.167°N 5.833°E / 51.167; 5.833

Geographic coordinate system Coordinate system

A geographic coordinate system is a coordinate system that enables every location on Earth to be specified by a set of numbers, letters or symbols. The coordinates are often chosen such that one of the numbers represents a vertical position and two or three of the numbers represent a horizontal position; alternatively, a geographic position may be expressed in a combined three-dimensional Cartesian vector. A common choice of coordinates is latitude, longitude and elevation. To specify a location on a plane requires a map projection.

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The term Stift is derived from the verb stiften and originally meant a donation. Such donations usually comprised earning assets, originally landed estates with serfs defraying dues or with vassal tenants of noble rank providing military services and forwarding dues collected from serfs. In modern times the earning assets could also be financial assets donated to form a fund to maintain an endowment, especially a charitable foundation. When landed estates, donated as a Stift to maintain the college of a monastery, the chapter of a collegiate church or the cathedral chapter of a diocese, formed a territory enjoying the status of an imperial state within the Holy Roman Empire then the term Stift often also denotes the territory itself. In order to specify this territorial meaning the term Stift is then composed with the compound "hoch" as Hochstift, denoting a prince-bishopric, or Erzstift for a prince-archbishopric.

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Gernrode Abbey

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Thorn Abbey

Thorn Abbey or Imperial Abbey of Thorn was an imperial abbey of the Holy Roman Empire in what is now the Netherlands. The capital was Thorn. It was founded in the 10th century; independence ended in 1794, when it was occupied by French troops. The abbey was reichsunmittelbar and belonged to the Lower Rhenish-Westphalian Circle.

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