Anneken vanden Hove (d. 1597)

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Burial alive of Anneke van den Hove, Brussels, 1597.
Engraving by Jan Luiken in Martyrs Mirror, v. 2, p. 793 of Dutch edition.
Source: Rijksmuseum.

Anneken vanden Hove (Anna Emels, also called Anneken uyt-den Hove), an Anabaptist martyr, was a domestic servant for two ladies by the name of Ramparts at Brussels, Belgium. In company with these ladies she attended Mennonite meetings. In December 1594 all three were imprisoned. Because the two ladies recanted they were set free, but Anneken would not renounce her faith. Finally she was condemned to be buried alive. Van Braght related in detail this horrible execution, which took place a mile from Brussels on 19 July 1597. Anneken, who was unmarried and 48 years of age at the time of her execution, was the last victim of the Inquisition in the southern Netherlands (now Belgium). With her the long series of martyrdoms there came to an end.

Soon after her execution a song about her martyrdom was published (a copy of this song is extant in the Dutch Royal Library at the Hague) with the title, Een nieu Liedeken van een jonge Dochter die binnen Breussel levenkdich gedolven is, ... It begins, "Fij Cain wreet moordadich, Fij Pharo obstinaet" (Fie, cruel and murderous Cain, fie, obstinate Pharaoh), and has twenty-one stanzas; according to this song Anneken was thirty-three years old; this, however, is not correct. In 1610 (place and printer unknown) a pamphlet of four pages was published: Een corte Besehrijvinghe van een jonghe Dochter, die tot Brussel levendich gedolven is om het Woordt des Heeren int jaer 1597, which was revision in prose, followed by the song itself. The booklet, published in 1601 at Antwerp by Jerome Verdussen in the French language: Brief et Veritable Discours de la Mort d'aucuns Vaillants et glorieux Martyrs . . . , also speaks of the death of Anneken, though the Roman Catholic author thinks the execution was right. About Anneken's death Jacques van Vivere wrote a song: De Uyt-spraecke van Anna Uyt Den Hove . . . (Leiden, 1598). The Reformed martyrbook of Haemstede, Historie der Martelaren (edition of 1609) also includes this Anabaptist martyr; its account differs somewhat from that of the Mennonite martyr books, including van Braght, Martyrs Mirror. The Haemstede version seems rather to agree with the above song and the prose report.


Braght, Thieleman J. van. Het Bloedigh Tooneel of Martelaers Spiegel der Doops-gesinde of Weereloose Christenen, Die om 't getuygenis van Jesus haren Salighmaker geleden hebben ende gedood zijn van Christi tijd of tot desen tijd toe. Den Tweeden Druk. Amsterdam: Hieronymus Sweerts, 1685: Part II, 792-799.

Braght, Thieleman J. van. The Bloody Theatre or Martyrs' Mirror of the Defenseless Christians Who Baptized Only upon Confession of Faith and Who Suffered and Died for the Testimony of Jesus Their Saviour . . . to the Year A.D. 1660. Scottdale, PA: Herald Press, 1951: 1093. Available online at:

Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. II, 353.

Verheyden, A. L. E. Le Martyrologe Courtraisien et la Martyrologe Bruxellois. Vilvorde: R. Allecourt, 1950: 105, No. 168.

Author(s) Nanne van der Zijpp
Date Published 1953

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MLA style

Zijpp, Nanne van der. "Anneken vanden Hove (d. 1597)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1953. Web. 29 Sep 2023.

APA style

Zijpp, Nanne van der. (1953). Anneken vanden Hove (d. 1597). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 29 September 2023, from


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 1, p. 126. All rights reserved.

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