Fodor's Expert Review Manneken Pis

Lower Town Public Art Fodor's Choice

Despite drawing sightseers for centuries, the minuscule statue of the peeing boy may leave you underwhelmed. The first mention of the Manneken dates from 1377, and he's said to symbolize what Belgians think of the authorities. The "original" version was commissioned from noted sculptor Jerome Duquesnoy in 1619 to replace the old stone one, though what is on display now is a copy. The original was once seized by French soldiers, and to quell local unrest, King Louis XV of France presented the Manneken Pis with a gold-embroidered suit, thus starting a bizarre trend. The statue now has more than 1,000 costumes (the safe-sex outfit is truly remarkable!) for ceremonial occasions, and even has his own personal dresser. 

You can see a selection of the statue's many outfits at the GardeRobe Manneken Pis museum at nearby 19 rue du Chêne.

Public Art Fodor's Choice

Quick Facts

Rue du Chêne
Brussels, Brussels Capital  1000, Belgium

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