The Spanish Government Museum (new name: Museum aan het Vrijthof)

Museum aan het Vrijthof in Maastricht, along Vrijthof Square

The Spanish Government Museum is housed in a 16th century building. It was originally built as a residence for one of the canons of the former Saint Servatius religious chapter. The Gothic, marl building, with the early Renaissance arcade in the inner courtyard is the oldest surviving example of civic architecture in Maastricht. The museum's name refers to the right of the Spanish king ,- one of the two lords who shared control of the city- to use the house when in Maastricht. The carved coat of arms, the motto of Charles V, PLUS OULTRE ('ever onward') and the carved medallions with the portraits of Charles V, Governess Maria of Hungary and the young Philip II commemorate the visits of the Spanish Kings to Maastricht between 1520 en 1550 and their stay in the Spanish Government .

From 1 January 2009 the museum got a new name: Museum aan het Vrijthof.

The Spanish Government Museum, housed in the 16th-century residence for one of the canons of the former Saint Servatius religious chapter, with the carved coat of arms and the motto of Charles V above the windows on the first floor. The 'Liège room', one of the period rooms in Liège Régence Style, during the exhibition The laid table in 1997. The Circle of Friends of the Spanish Governement organizes The laid table every year in December.

Since 1973, the Spanish Governement Musuem has housed the Wagner-De Wit collection. This private collection consists primarily of 18th century furniture, porcelain, pottery, silver, glassware and carpets, but also contains paintings and sculpture from the Middele Ages to the beginning of the 20th century. This core collection has been extended with furniture, clocks and silver objects in Liège Régence Style. This style, in which French Régence motivs can be seen, was produced from local oak, and florished in the mid-18th century around Liège, Aachen and Maastricht.

The Spanish Government Museum also houses a collection of paintings and drawings by artists who worked in Maastricht during the first half of the 20th century. These works of art, by such artists as Rob Graafland and Henri Jonas, from the basis of temporary exhibitions on the development of art and artists in Maastricht's recent past.

The museum has a number of period rooms with 17th and 18th-century furnishings, silver work, porcelain, pottery, glassware and so forth. It also has a superb collection of 17th and 18th-century Dutch paintings. Two rooms are furnished in the Liège-Maastricht Regency style, popular in the mid-18th century. One of the important features of these two rooms is the museum’s collection of Maastricht silver work. The museum also regularly organises temporary exhibitions of works by local artists and craftsmen of the recent and more distant past.
 Museum aan het Vrijthof

Opening hours

Wednesday - Sunday, from 1 PM till 5 PM
Closed on 1 January, Carnival (Friday to Tuesday), 1st day of Easter, Queen’s Birthday, Ascension, 1st and 2nd day of Christmas.
The museum or sections of the museum are closed the week prior to the opening of an exhibition. Please call for more information.

Admission prices:
Permanent collection - € 3.00 and Exhibitions - € 4.00. Children up to 16 years - free.

Location and Contavt
Spanish Government museum
Vrijthof 18
6211 LD Maastricht, along Vrijthof Square (The Vrijthof and Market Squares are just steps from the property, and so too are sites like the Johannes Petrus Minckelers statue, Sint Servaasbrug Bridge, St. John’s Church, the Basilica of St. Servatius, the Spanish Government Museum, and the excellent shopping gin the Mosae Forum and Entre Deux area.)
Tel: +31 [0]43- 3211327

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