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This year 2018, we are celebrating the 200th anniversary of Karl Marx’s birth, on the 5th of May 1818, one of the most influential thinkers of the modern era.

Karl Marx lived in Brussels as a political refugee from 1845 to 1848.

There were a lot of political refugees in Belgium at that time as this young state had one of the most liberal constitutions in Europe. It guaranteed the freedoms of expression, press and association.

Here at “De Swaene” Karl Marx and his friend Engels organized meetings of the Communist League, who commissioned
the “Manifesto of the Communist Party”.  

It is a short publication written by Marx and Engels, that presents an analytical approach to the class struggle and the problems of capitalism.

Karl Marx also celebrated New Year Eve 1847/1848 at “De Swaene” with the "Deutscher Arbeiterverein" and
the "Association Démocratique".

In 1847 Marx founds an association of German workers in Brussels, the "Deutscher Arbeiterverein" and he was also elected Vice-President of the “Association Democratique”, a group that aimed to fight for the workers rights and for socialism.

A Plaque commemorating Karl Marx passage has been placed on the façade of the house

Later, in April 1885, the founding congress of the Belgian Workers' Party (Le Parti des Ouvriers Belges) was held in here,
at  “La Maison du Cygne”