I think that this doorway probably is one most photographed doors in The Hague, and for good reason.
It’s located on the building that stands on the corner of Kneuterdijk and Hoge Nieuwstraat, directly across the street from the building in this post: http://kiwidutch.wordpress.com/2011/09/15/new-458/.
This door was made when you could “make an entrance” into a building in grand style, it said something about the building, not just the address you were going to but that when you got here that you had indeed, ”arrived”.
And what an arrival… this grand doorway is recessed a little back from the pavement, but surely it’s beauty arrests any passing eye that processes a love of detail, texture, architecture and ornament. If it doesn’t, then I venture to declare that the world is blind indeed to the skill and craftsmanship that produced wonders in stone-masonry.
Every time I see this door and stop to look yet again, my first dilemma is not knowing where to look first. Your eye is drawn up, down, left and right as one detail after another grabs your attention.
The door itself is quite beautiful in it’s own right with decoration galore from carved wood, wrought iron and decorative panels to scroll-work and brass plates…. … but there is still so much to see…
The two sets of fierce lions placed on the outside columns usually get my first detailed attention, the lower set are in gray and the upper set are in white.
Then you notice the wrought iron and surrounding decorative bits both in the door and around it, but invariably your eyes are drawn to the little owl that stands upon two bound volumes, peering down with his knowing eyes from his vantage point in the semi circular cartouche at the top of the door.
There’s a Latin inscription set around him, but alas I am no scholar of Classical languages, so whilst this little bird sits on his books of knowledge, I can only enjoy in blissful ignorance.
I drink in this door, the photos do not do it justice. One day when I’m mobile I will be back and I am sure I will find new detail to photograph next time too…
Not bad for a humble door fame eh…?