Tall shapes on the top of a hill… A monument to a language.

The town of Paarl has a monument dedicated to the language of Afrikaans. On our short sojourn to Cape Town I had the pleasure of visiting the Paarl Golf Course or the Boschenmeer Golf Estate. It was raining and therefore did not allow me the chance to take photos of the course, but on my return to Cape Town I spotted this monument and went for a quick visit.

A monument full of symbolism giving recognition to the roots of the language itself. it was designed by Jan van Wijk, who with a bit of research appeared as one of South Africa’s top architects, who in his time was involved in many monument designs. (Now that I did not know.)

His ashes after his death in 2005 were interred in a boulder where he and his wife would sit and rest when visiting the site of the monument.

Unveiled on 10th October 1975, it is now visible from many of the surrounding roadways that pass the town of Paarl.

The symbolism of the monument goes something like this… the influence of (Europe) Dutch, German, French and English are shown such…. (horrible day for photography but I’ve done my best.)


The influences of the Malay, Malay-Portuguese and Arabic (Asia)


The Khoi languages of isiXhosa, isiZulu and seSotho (Africa)….


“The bridge” represents N.P.van Wyk Louw’s influence in the design….


“The growth of Afrikaans” influenced by C.J. Langenhoven words… (the tallest one)


and then the Republic of South Africa – the birth place of Afrikaans….


Within the tallest piece, which is of a hollow construction, representing the the growth of the language, is a small water feature that makes the most magnificent sound created within the structure….


Just some other photos to try and put all the pieces together in one photo, not an easy thing as this monument is huge….






From the top of the hill is some of the most brilliant views of the surrounding landscape… but due to bad weather I can only post one that gives you an idea… (I’m no landscape photog..) agricultural lands surrounding a mountain covered in snow… (you can’t see the snow for clouds)


I’m in hospital, so might not get round to answering any comments till out of there… but with he abilities of Word Press, I can publish this post whenever I want, irrespective of where I am… (I promise this is not from a hospital bed)