The Legend of Rozebeke

Source: Rozebeke and its cavalcade. Origin and evolution. (Em. Prof. Dr. M. Debackere)

In times the territory of Rozebeke was one forest, inhabited by heathens. In their superstition they worshipped Thor - the protector of horses - in a part of the forest, the holy forest. They also worshipped the love goddess FREA. Her image was hanging on an oak tree, on which root was a spring overgrown with roses. During the first half of the 11th century, Benedictine fathers from Blandinusberg in Ghent were the first preachers of the faith to come here with the intention of christianising these heathens. In 1164, St. Peter's Abbey donated a statue of Our Lady that was hung on an oak tree near the pagan spring. This statue bears a striking resemblance to the image of Frea. Pagan motifs were replaced by Christian ones, and thus a first primitive place of worship came into being.

By choosing the name FREA, I want to give this goddess her place again. Moreover, it is also my aspiration to make this place a place of love. Love for yourself, love for the other, love for the silence and nature. A place where lovers find time for each other.


Het is een oude traditie dat er in het kleine dorp Rozebeke op de tweede zondag na 2 juli een paardenommegang wordt gehouden. De dieren en hun ruiters worden er voor de effectieve ommegang door de deken gezegend. Daarna trekken de ruiters te paard door de straten van de gemeente en verkennen ze de Zwalm. Met ruim 100 deelnemende dieren is het hoefgetrappel niet te verwaarlozen. De paardenommegang is tevens een gezellig muzikaal zomerevenement op het dorpsplein. Tal van muzikale groepen luisteren dit feest op.