Three Anthems, a Flag and a Tenor: Introduction

  • Josephine Hoegaerts
Part of the Genders and Sexualities in History Series book series (GSX)


On 25 August 1830, the beau monde of what would soon become Belgium was attending a performance of Auber’s romantic nationalist opera La Muette de Portici. Common lore of the Belgian ‘operetta rev- olution’ speaks of crowds inspired by the martial tones of the opera running into the streets of Brussels while chanting ‘vive la liberté’ and opening the fight with the army of the Dutch ruler. Negotiations with the Dutch King commenced a mere three days later. The revolution, so it seems, had consisted mainly of an excitable mob smashing factory machinery in their anger over their lack of employment, along with the display of the tricolore of Brabant-Hainaut. In September, however, fits of rebellion became more numerous and violent, and when Dutch prince Frederik entered Brussels with his army, he encountered a pop- ular fury that quickly turned into a national uprising. The skirmishes in the Warande-parc inspired the revolutionaries to form a provisional government but also inspired the creation of a Belgian nation that could be lived, written and sung.1


Nineteenth Century Common Language Hegemonic Masculinity Male Voice Military History 
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Copyright information

© Josephine Hoegaerts 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Josephine Hoegaerts
    • 1
  1. 1.University of LeuvenBelgium

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