Here are 36 Interesting Belgium facts.

1-5 Belgium Facts

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1. In Belgium, everyone is automatically an organ donor unless they refuse beforehand. – Source

2. During WWI, King Albert I of Belgium personally lead the desperate defense against the Germans, while the Queen served as a nurse, and their son, the 14-year-old Crown Prince enlisted in the infantry as a private. – Source

3. In 2009, a Belgian bodybuilding championship was canceled after doping officials arrived unannounced and all the competitors fled. – Source

4. King Leupold II of Belgium was responsible for the genocide of 10 million Congolese in the late 1800’s. – Source

5. Belgium has the world’s highest divorce rate at 70%. – Source

6-10 Belgium Facts

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6.  Trappist beers are brewed in monasteries, most of which are located in Belgium. The beer is brewed, either by the monks themselves or under their supervision and the profits are donated to charity for social work and to help persons in need. – Source

7. New Belgium Brewing company (makers of Fat Tire, Blue Paddle, etc) will only ship their beers cold, but since it is illegal in Oklahoma and Utah liquor stores to sell cold full-percentage beer (+3.2%), New Belgium refuses to distribute its product there. – Source

8. When it became apparent that Israel was going to win the 1978 Eurovision Song Contest, most of the Arabic countries ended their transmission of the contest. This includes Jordan, who replaced the live broadcast with a picture of daffodils and later announced that Belgium had won. – Source

9. In Belgium, there is a folk character called “The Whipping Father” who accompanies St. Nicholas. He beats naughty children with sticks and carries them away in a bag. – Source

10. The former Catholic King of the Belgians had himself declared “unable to rule” by the Belgian Government for one day so a law legalizing abortion could be passed without him having to sign it. – Source

11-15 Belgium Facts

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11.  There’s a movement in Belgium aimed at splitting the country into French speakers and Dutch speakers. Belgium would then be dissolved and the respective groups would merge with France and the Netherlands. – Source

12. In 1879, cats were used to deliver mail in Belgium but it was unsuccessful. – Source

13. A forest in Chatillon, Belgium, is the resting place of cars belonging to US troops who lived in the region during WWII. After the troops left their cars behind at the end of WWII, they were all driven up a hill and parked, hidden from the outside world. – Source

14. The brewery in Belgium that created and produces Stella Artois Pilsner beer was founded in 1366 as the “Den Hoorn” brewery in Leuven. It became “Brouwerij Artois” in 1717. The horn logo is recognized as the oldest known continuously-used company logo in the world. – Source

15. The duffel bag gets its name from the town of Duffel, Belgium, where the thick cloth used to make the bag originated. – Source

16-20 Belgium Facts

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16. Belgium is named after the Belgae people, which is translated to ‘The people who swell with anger,’ meaning Belgium means ‘land where the people swell with anger’ – Source

17. Before the Nazi invasion in 1940, Belgium possessed an army of about 600,000 soldiers due to the conscription, but only 16 battle tanks. – Source

18. Belgium holds a cat festival every third year on the second Sunday of May. – Source

19. Belgium beat Iraq to get the world record for having no government for the longest time. – Source

20. In 1955, a thunderstorm in Belgium set off 40 000 pounds of buried explosives left over from the WW1 battle of Messines. Luckily, the only casualty was a single cow. – Source

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Last Update: August 2, 2017