The Schreierstoren was originally built for defensive purposes in 1487 and was part of the city wall of medieval Amsterdam. Originally it was named ‘scrye’ tower, which means sharp angle, as it stood where the Geldersekade and the Oudezijds Kolk come together at a sharp angle. From here, the sailors in service of the VOC (United East Indian Company) were brought to the ships laying in the Zuider Sea. From the tower the women said goodbye to their husbands, who would be either away for many years or not survive the long voyage to the Far East. Many tears were shed here, perhaps that is why the name of the tower changed to ‘Schreiers’, another word for ‘crying’ in Dutch.
You can find a walking route in our free map which will lead you to the most interesting and beautiful sights on this entertaining city walk in the old town of Amsterdam.