4821 statues on this site
Why this website?
For the Netherlands we have a website Mens & Dier in Steen & Brons (People and Animals in Stone and Bronze). We have the intention to make that site as complete as possible. Our basis is a research in literature and internet for sculptures, and with that information we travel around the Netherlands and make photos of every relevant sculpture we see.
We are so used to make photos of sculptures, that we 'have to do' the same during our trips in other countries, and so we made this website Statues Hither & Dither. The main difference with the Dutch site is however that there is no systematic research and we have absolutely no intention to be complete. Just the statues we see along the road or walking around towns.
14 October 2012: In June we had a vacation in France and in July Wales and England, and in September we travelled quite a lot in Germany and Central Europe. Only during this last trip we made about 12,000 photos of almost 1,000 objects. It will take quite some time before the September photos are on the web. We have uploaded the database and all photographed objects are there - however, a lot of them will have an 'under construction' sign instead of a photo and an incomplete description (these are not listed on the page with new objects, but via the other indexes accessible).
14 to 21 April 2012: For work, Peter had to be in Stuttgart on 18 April. That was an opportunity for a week vacation in the Alsace and Germany. With this trip, the number of statues in Germany came over 1,000! The map of Germany is therefore slowly. We are considering a change of the structure of the site and have the German statues listed per "Land" - at the same time, those in France will be listed per "région".
8 to 16 July 2011: Peter was at a congress in Moscow. In the free time I photographed 226 monuments in that town. It is clear that the Russians love culture, history and education. One of the best examples is the plethora of plaques and signs commemorating historic events and personalities all around Moscow. You see them everywhere. Some of them are quite intricate, especially when they relate to inventors and scientists (as there are often pictures of molecules or inventions together with a likeness of the individual). Often they commemorate the buildings in which historical events occured - such as the auditoriums in which Lenin delivered his first addresses after the Russian Revolution. During my week in Moscow I photographed 137 of these plaques. The plaques are in Russian (as are all other texts on momuments of course), which makes it difficult to understand the historical significance of the plaque if you have no knowledge of the language of the Cyrillic script. On this site the texts are translated into English (thanks to Google translate).
All monuments in Moscow you'll find here, the 137 commemorative plaques are all here, and the 59 statues and busts here (that are 'only' 196 monuments, the 30 others can be categorized as 'various' and do not have their own keyword).
13 to 18 June 2011: a week holiday in France and Luxembourg, with many new sculptures in Belgium, France, Luxembourg (the first in that country) and Germany. During this trip we tried to get some town listed under X - where only Xanten was listed. So we visited in France Xeuilly, Xirocourt, Xermaménil, and Xocourt, and in Belgium Xhoris, Xhignesse, and Xhendremael. (Has anyone visited more than 7 towns with an X in one week?). But mostly in vain, only in Xirocourt we found a sculpture.
23 to 26 May 2011: a short trip by car to Paris gave the opportunity to add the first sculptures in France to this website. Monday 23 was Q-day. Until that day we had only one town with a Q: Quedlinburg in Germany. Now we visited Quaregnon, Quiévrain, Quiévrechain, Quarouble, and Le Quesnoy - only in Quarouble no sculptures. We stayed the night in Saint-Quentin, but that town is listed under S.
With over 2000 items on this site it is possible to make some observations about the characteristics in the different countries. We photograph all three-dimensional sculptures and reliefs showing human beings or animals. We can roughly categorize these sculptures in four groups:
In the Netherlands all categories are found, although the 1st category is the smallest. Saint's statues are found only in the Roman-Catholic regions. Folkloristic and decoratieve sculptures are simple and small, usually one figure, sometimes two and very seldom three or more.
- Commemorative: depicting famous people or events, there are three sub-categories:
- famous people in the form of equestrian statues, statues, busts or relief portraits on plaques.
- war memorials, often with soldiers or allegorical figures.
- events, usually in the form of reliefs
- Religious: Statues of saints.
- Folkloristic: illustrating old local occupations, customs, myths, fairy tales, legends, etc.
- Decorative:, depicting just human beings or animals without any other meaning that just being beautiful.
- Denmark and Sweden show more or less the same situation as in the Netherlands, although saints' statues almost not exist.
- Germany, of commemorative and folkloristic sculptures almost equal numbers are found, saints' statues are found only in the Roman Catholic regions and decorative sculptures are quite rare; folkloristic sculptures are often with multiple figures and with a fountain.
- France and Belgium, we found almost exclusive commemorative sculptures, and saints' statues. Especially in France a great number of war memorials.
- Great Britain, we have not much in the UK, but the situation looks the same as in France and Belgium.
- Russia, we visited only Moscow, from the 226 sculptures we photographed, 196 belong to the first category (1a), the few others belong to the folkloristic category.