Unlucky Dinant

From the 12th century, Dinant was a major centre for a form of Mosan copper- and brasswork that’s still known today as dinanderie. However, that ended in 1466, when the town was virtually destroyed by Burgundian King Charles the Bold. Why? Because some townsfolk had dared to call him a bastard. Naming the Bishop of Liège as Charles's illegitimate father certainly didn’t help either. History repeated itself in WWI when around 10% of the population was executed and much of the town razed in retaliation for resisting the German occupation.

Adolphe Sax, born in Dinant in 1814, proved no luckier than his hometown. He invented a wide range of musical instruments including the saxophone, which he patented in 1846. Yet he died penniless in 1894 after a decade of legal wrangles.