Located in the middle of woods and heathland, Bergen op Zoom was the location for two large fairs in the Middle Ages. It was the capital of an independent seigneury from 1287 and became a marquisate in 1533. Its port was then linked to the eastern Scheldt. Famous for its invincibility, especially at the time of Spanish attacks (16-17C), its fortifications were reinforced around 1700 by M. van Coehoorn . Its boulevards trace the contours of these ramparts, which were demolished in 1868.