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The legend of the Flora Goddess statue

According to a legend, the daughter of the lord of Veltwijck, who owned a castle in the town of Ekeren, near Antwerp, Belgium, fell in love with a simple servant working in the gardens of the castle. The lord did everything to stop his virgin daughter to be deflowered by the servant and out of despair, he locked his daughter up in one of the towers of his castle. He also banned the servant from coming near to the castle ever again.

But the love between the two was so intense that the daughter got very depressed. She missed her lover so much that she jumped out of her jailed window into the pond surrounding the castle to escape her unlucky life. Unfortunately, she drowned.

Picture by Harry Fabel

Her father was very remorseful and as a sign of mourning, he wanted to put a statue in the garden of his castle remembering his daughter. He didn't want the image of the statue to resemble the image of his daughter because out of shame he could not face her memory anymore, the statue was also placed as far from the castle as possible, but still, on the castle grounds. He ordered to make the statue just the Goddess Flora. Because just like this Goddess, his daughter loved flowers and she could spend hours walking by the flowerbeds in the castle garden.

The forever grieving father also wanted a procession to walk through the garden every year walking past his daughter's statue. The procession did go through the park and when the procession stepped under the castle's gatehouse, the tower bell was sounded. The last time that the procession walked through the park was in 1966, after that year the father and his daughter were forever forgotten and their story turned into a legend.

But still, today, when you walk through the gatehouse you can hear the tower bell, all do it has been removed many years ago. Also, the Flora Goddess is still standing in the garden of the castle, looking like it's been searching for a long-lost love that went wrong.

Picture by Harry Fabel

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