|Windmills of Kinderdijk|
|The windmills of Kinderdijk are located near Rotterdam in the Netherlands. They are a favorite tourist destination and are illuminated each year in the month of September. In 1997, the Kinderdijk windmills were placed on the UNESCO World Heritage list. This group of 19 mills, constructed in 1740, is the largest concentration of windmills in the Netherlands. They were used to drain the excess water from the Alblasserwaard polders, which are situated below sea level. Nowadays, power driven pumping engines do the job. The Wereld Erfgoed Kinderdijk Foundation maintains and preserves the windmills. The Netherlands, famous for its old windmills, has over 1,000 still standing.
The name Kinderdijk is Dutch for "Child's Dike." In 1421, during the Saint Elizabeth flood, the Grote Hollandse Waard flooded, but the Alblasserwaard polder stayed unflooded. It is said that when the storm had subsided, someone went on to the dike between these two areas to see what could be saved. He saw in the distance a wooden cradle floating. He held no hope that anything could be living in it, but when it approached, he could see movement. When the cradle came nearer, a cat could be seen in the cradle trying to keep it in balance by jumping back and forth, so that no water could come into it. When the cradle came close enough to the dike, he fished it out and saw that in it, a baby slept, quiet and dry. This legend has been published as "The Cat and the Cradle." Griffis, 1918.
|Windmills of the World
Windmills of My Mind
The photos on this page, with the exception of the last one, are thanks to
Wikimedia Commons; the photo directly above is courtesy of Pieter
Haringsma, from his excellent Pictures of Holland site.
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