By Steve Kovacs (Introduction by Chuck Gibson)

LOVELAND, OH (April 19, 2022) – In Issue 2022-076 of Steve Kovacs Fun with Maps, celebrating independence for Belgium – not quite 200 years ago today.

A New Old Country

Belgium is one of the younger countries in Europe.  It has been part of countless other countries over time, and finally was recognized as an independent country per the Treaty of London on April 19, 1839. 

While most of the recently established countries did seek independence for their relatively homogenous population by culture and language, Belgium did not quite follow that pattern.  Belgium has three communities: the Flemish speaking Dutch, the Walloon community speaking French and a German speaking community.  All three languages are national languages.

This country of 11.5 million people, so about the population of Ohio, managed to get themselves in the political and economic center stage.  They did so by first forming, with the Netherlands and Luxemburg, the Benelux economic network which inspired the formation of the European Union, both are headquartered in Brussels.  And NATO is also headquartered in Brussels.

Not bad for a country, whose name “Belgium” was borrowed from Julius Caesar, who referenced the region we now call Belgium during his Gallic wars.

Homann’s map of the Low Countries, including today’s Belgium, is shown here from 1753.

NOTE: Fun With Maps feature will be on break as LOVELAND BEACON has gone in search of Sunshine and Warm Temperatures. This popular daily feature (FWM) will return with Loveland Beacon on MONDAY, MAY 2. Watch for it! Sorry for the temporary loss of the feature. Now, here is today’s map: 

Low Countries including Belgium – 1753 (Credit Steve Kovacs)

Steve Kovacs and his wife Theresa reside in Loveland, Ohio where they raised their two children. He is a passionate collector of antique maps.

Visit his antique map boutique world-on-paper online. Watch for his daily feature Steve Kovacs: Antique Maps & Fun Facts here on Loveland Beacon.