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Chaumont-Gistoux (Municipality, Province of Walloon Brabant, Belgium)

Last modified: 2016-02-29 by ivan sache
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Flag of Chaumont-Gistoux - Image by Arnaud Leroy, 29 April 2006

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Presentation of Chaumont-Gistoux and its villages

The municipality of Chaumont-Gistoux (11,043 inhabitants on 1 January 2007; 4,808 ha; municipal website) is located near Nivelles. The municipality is made since 1976 of the former municipalities of Chaumont-Gistoux, Bonlez, Corroy-le-Grand, Dion-Valmont and Longueville.

Chaumont-Gistoux was first mentioned on a charter dated 1019-1030. Chaumont means "the bare mount" (in Latin, calvus mons), whereas Gistoux comes from gesteau, "a sandy hill". Chaumont belonged in the 7th century to the abbey of Ghent and was transferred, as a free domain, to the Prince-Bishop of Liège, in spite of belonging to the Duchy of Brabant.
The odd situation of Chaumont was very profitable to the villagers. Although they were never granted any municipal charter, their total independence from the Duke of Brabant was confirmed several times. As a de jure enclave of Liège into Brabant, Chaumont often exercized the right of asylum: after having paid a fee, anybody sentenced in Brabant could settle "freely" in Chaumont, provided he promised to be quite and to avoid any unlawful act. The farmers of Chaumont owning plots in Brabant could bring there seeds and fertilizers and bring back crops without paying any tax. This privilege was confirmed on 16 September 1670 by the Council of Finances on behalf of the King. The villagers were also exempted of tax when they purchased food and goods on the markets of Brabant. The specific situation of Chaumont caused a lot of fraud and quarrel with the neighbouring villages.

Bonlez (from Latin bonum latus, "the good side of the valley"), was originally separated into two domains, Haut- (Upper) and Bas-Bonlez (Lower Bonlez). In the 17th century, Bas-Bonlez became a Barony and was granted a feudal court.

Corroy-le-Grand was known in 1441 as Coratum magnum. In 1152, the village belonged to the chapter of the St. Peter church in Liège. On the eve of the battle of Waterloo in 1815, the rearguard of the Prussian army, commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Ledebur, fought a skirmish in Corroy with the French cavalry commanded by General Exelmans, on its way back to Wavre.

Dion-Valmont, then known as Dion-le-Mont, was transferred to the abbey of Gembloux in 987, which kept it until 1623. The name of the village is related to the Celtic root *divona, "a sacred river". In 1815, on the eve of the battle of Waterloo, the 30,000 men commanded by Von Bülow camped in Dion and sacked the village.

Longueville, lit. "a long village" (in Latin, longua villa) is locally said to be a very ancient settlement. It was an important junction of raids roads to Wavre, Leuven, Jodoigne and Chaumont.

Ivan Sache, 29 April 2006

Flah of Chaumont-Gistoux

The flag of Chaumont-Gistoux is horizontally divided red-white by a wavy line.
According to the Armoiries communales en Belgique. Communes wallonnes, bruxelloises et germanophones [w2v03], the flag is prescribed by a Decree adopted on 31 August 1995 by the Municipal Council and confirmed on 11 September 1998 by the Executive of the French Community, as "Per fess wavy red on white". The drawing in the source book is wrong, showing the flag divided white-red.

The colours of the flag are the main colours of the municipal coat of arms, "Gules a lion argent, the tail forked in saltire, armed, langued and crowned or, a cotice sable all over".
The wavy division recalls the former arms of Corroy-le-Grand.

Arnaud Leroy, Pascal Vagnat & Ivan Sache, 29 April 2006

Cercle de la Voile de Virelles Binche

[Burgee of CVVB]

Burgee of CVVB - Image by Ivan Sache, 23 February 2007

The burgee of CVVB (image), is white with a blue cross outlined in yellow and the blue letters CVVB in the upper hoist.

Jan Mertens, 20 February 2007