Note: Located on the canalized Schie River, it was founded in the 11th century and granted a charter in 1246. Severely damaged twice, once by a fire in 1536 and then by an explosion in 1654. It was rebuilt and became a thriving commercial center in the 16th and 17th centuries. It is known for its cloth, breweries, and faience delftware (tin-glazed earthenware), but it was later superceded by Rotterdam. In 1584, William of Orange was murdered here on the orders of Philip II of Spain. Birthplace of artist Jan Vermeer (1632-1675).