Bells in Ghent

Bells Exhibit at the Belfry of Ghent

Bells Exhibit at the Belfry of Ghent

I was surprised to be able to have a look at the actually bells in use by the belfry in Ghent. I was thinking that it would be a place which is off limits to visitor. It actually is but they did provide a little hole so visitors can have a peep at the bell itself. While I didn’t get to see the bells in action. We did get to see the mechanism which make the bells toll. It is actually in another floor below it. It was a massive machine with wires which pull different bells depending on the music. It was incredibly interesting to see this mechanism. Try as I might, I couldn’t figure out how it works. I guess all it needs to know is how to toll which bell depending on the instruction given to it. It was almost like a mechanical computer and it was incredibly fascinating.

Old Bells at the Belfry of Ghent

Old Bells at the Belfry of Ghent

We waited a while for the bell to toll thinking it tolls every thirty minutes but no ringing. We did see the mechanism move slightly. There was a big do not touch sign since there was nothing to keep visitor away. I guess they do it at the risk of losing a finger or hand. If you look around the room, there were weight hanging from the top but I wasn’t sure if they were related to the bells. I am amazed at this and how it is still working this the age of computers. I would have probably just installed loudspeakers and attached it to a phone to announce the time, but no one is interested in seeing something like that. Even though I don’t understand how a phone works either, I still think the mechanical version is much more interesting.

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