Towers in the western wall

... between the Schiedamse Poort and the Haagpoort/Wateringse Poort

In 1449, Delft got permission from Duke Philip of Burgundy to resume building walls and wall towers. In the following century, the city as Leeuwenhoek knew it took shape. The Waterslootse Poort was enlarged and the Haagpoort and the Schoolpoort were built. The St. Hypolitus Toorn was already there, but nothing else on that side of the city.

The people of Delft anticipated not only wind but enemy armies to come from the west. Thus, a series of defensive fortifications were added: the St. Michiels Tooren, the St. Hironimus Tooren, the Bagijnetoren, the bastion (half-round tower section of city walls) around the Steckmolen, the Bordeel Meulen (now known as the Molen de Roos), and the Heltoren where the singel bent east toward the Haagpoort.




Schiedamse Poort

Bourgonse Toorn

The detail from the Kaart Figuratief of 1A fortified bastion (right; click all thumbnails to enlarge) the same height as the wall, with one row of windows. A post mill with a turnable top is set back a little from the wall.

Hollantsche Toren
Zeelandtsche Toorn

The Kaart Figuratief shows these as similar unraised, unfortified bastions, basically just bulges in the wall across from the Houttuijn, the city wood yard. The Hollandse Toren, bearing a white x above the window, is on the far left of the painting below. The wall was tall enough that the shooters protected by these two roundels would have needed something to raise them to the height of the window let alone to the top.

On the earlier maps, these look like clusters of three buildings, the tallest in the middle with a roof, larger than the nearby houses. They are clearly inside the wall, not jutting out from it like the round towers.

On Blaeu's map of 1649, the seven towers on this western section of the singel all look the same. That similarity as well as the three evenly spaced  towers between the Waterslootse Poort and the Schoolpoort, instead of two, one much closer to the Waterslootse Poort, indicate that Blaeu's map is in error.

St. Michiels

St. Hyronimus

Waterslootse Poort

St. Michiels Tooren
St. Hyronimus Toorn

These two round towers protrude from the wall and presumably have the flat back side flush with the wall. On the Kaart Figuratief, the bodies of the towers are barely higher than the wall. Only their roofs extend above. Perhaps they were bastions that were just covered instead of re-built as towers, as were the bastions in the south and west walls. Only the St. Hyronimus Toorn has a window for shooters, but presumably the St. Michiels Tooren did, too.

If these two are similar in design to the St. Agnieten Tooren and St. Sebastiaens Tooren on the southern section of the singel, then Leeuwenhoek rented a space with little light and barely enough room for a table and chair.




St. Hypolitus




Bagyne Toorn

round, two rows of windows, pointed roof

Steck Meulen

Bordeel Meulen

wooden post mill cap on stone base with outside steps set in unraised, unfortified roundel

St. Hypolitus Toorn

a windmill until Blaeu's map of 1649. Deventer's map of 1556 has a windmill set back in the neighborhood a little bit from the tower, so perhaps there were two structures, and the windmill was taken down at the end of the 1500's.

Hel Toorn

wooden post mill cap on tapering base with outside steps in raised, fortified corner rounded, one row of windows

Proost Meulen

Haagpoort and Wateringse Poort