tue 23 dec 2008 12:02:03 witte de withstraat
three bass is a long gone inn
i've been living in "de baarsjes" district on the west of amsterdam for just over one year. sometimes walking around i've wondered why they call it that. but when i ask, nobody knows, all they know is that baars means bass or perch in english. so i did some looking up.
in the mid 1600s this area used to be part of the town of sloten. there was an inn hereabouts called "de 3 baarsjes". and not much else around i guess, just polders. people started calling the surrounding area baarsjeszijde and baarsjespolder after the inn.
in the 1920s/30s they had h p berlage and his disciples designing new neighborhoods here in the style called "amsterdam school". jk's house where i live now was built during that period. the same kind of development happened over in the rivierenbuurt to the east.
so to really know why this hood is called de baarsjes, we'd have to ask teunis corneliszoon why he named his inn "the three bass". the inn itself had become a carpentry shop by 1941. in 1956 it was torn down to make way for new building on de baarsjesweg.
the symbol of three fishes still decorates an entrance to a church called the baarsjeskerk.
one other cool thing i noticed is that during the 1700s they called us amstelaaren rather than amsterdammers.