Gheel, a colony for the insane in Belgium, 26 miles E.S.E. of Antwerp, in a comparatively fertile spot, in the midst of an extensive sandy waste, called the Campine. About 1,300 insane persons are lodged with the citizens of this community, and are controlled and employed by them, and this without recourse to walls or any asylum appliences, and with little coercion of any kind. The quieter sufferers reside generally one in each family in the village, the more excited in separate farmhouses at some distance on the confines of the commune, while those requiring medical treatment are temporarily accommodated in the infirmary in Gheel. The support of the patients is in most cases guaranteed by the State. Pop. 12,026.

Entry from Everybody's Cyclopedia, 1912.