BRU - History - From the 1st century

The BRU springs have long been known to history, actually since the first century of our era.  Quoted by Pliny the Elder in Naturalis Historia, they are mentioned on military maps from the roman period under the name of “Fontes Acidi”, at the confluence of the Amblève and Lienne rivers, in the Ardennes.

 

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The water from the BRU springs has a natural carbon dioxide content. This is the reason why the springs were called “pouhon” until the 16th century (from a Walloon verb that means “drawing water”). People from the Chevron area as well as the monks of the Abbey of Stavelot-Malmedy used to draw water from the springs for their personal consumption.

 

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Abbaye of Stavelot

 

BRU water owes its renown to the monks, who were aware of its therapeutic effects and were the first to export it.

Beginning of the 17th century, the first bottles that were distributed were brown. The monks had this ingenious idea in order to hide the iron traces in the water.
Spa waters are being sold for the first time in Spa, in the principality of Liège. They are in competition with BRU water, from the neighbouring principality of Stavelot-Malmedy.

From 1635 to 1780, the market for BRU water overtakes the one for Spa waters, with 150,000 litres sold a year. Its main customers are then part of the nobility. 

A the end of the 18th century, the French revolution annihilates the water market and the springs become the property of the local council in Chevron.  

End of the 19th century, in 1879, the local council seeks to sell the springs in order to overcome financial difficulties, but the inconvenient access to the springs, located in the heart of the Ardennes forest, dampens the interest of potential buyers.



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