Victory Low lands

Envision ourselves in the XVI century in the Low Countries, how to translate the name Netherlands. Opening of a great game of chess history is this: the territory belongs to Spain, among the inhabitants of the Netherlands is becoming more popular Protestantism. And its track is perhaps the most essential and anti-papal – Calvinism. Yes, Calvin of Geneva has already cleansed the temple of the city of icons and statues of the saints, from all sorts of images of Christ and the apostles.

That’s all he said, is the worship of idols. In fact, you just need to pray without priests, work, enriched – and as a way to be satisfying to God. Pragmatic Dutch picked up these new developments. Of course! After all, their worst enemies, the Spaniards remained a devout Catholic. A work and earn money – a good thing.

The leader of the revolution against the Spaniards became Prince William ofOrange, I nicknamed Silent. Incidentally, Orange River inSouth Africa has been named by Dutch settlers did not because of the color of water, and in respect of the House of Orange, the patriots of their remote homeland.

First, the Spanish King Charles V, and later his son, Philip II gave up all efforts to rein in recalcitrant Protestants, and most significantly – to the knock-out of these new taxes. It is clear that this approach to the Dutch do not like. Pay their money to some a visiting Duke of Alba, one sent to the Netherlands to quell the rebellious, did not want to. However, the Spanish royals persisted. One example: in the city of Utrecht, Charles V was replaced by the Council of the Guild masters to control the city, its own governor, which took power in theprovince ofUtrecht. Yes, the king built a large Dutch money fortified palace Vredenburg – to pacify the residents of the province. Who will like it? But Philip II, spoke neither Dutch nor French, spent a greater centralization of power, intensified the harrying of Protestants and raised taxes. What should we expect? That’s right: the passion even more strained, started a rebellion against the Spanish rulers.

War is war, and growth on schedule

There must be a slight excursion. Initially, the Dutch war was economic, and religious, but gradually, over 80 years of hard fight back, they have achieved full independence of the United Provinces of the Netherlands north.

At the same time the southern provinces in the middle of the XVII century occupiedFrance. Cardinal Richelieu and then put his hand! Nevertheless, the final success of reforms and rapid growth of a new power was due not least escape the most intelligent and far-sighted people in the southern provinces in northern vacated.

Arrived, and the scientific and technological discoveries. Telescopes, microscopes, magnifying glasses were no longer a rarity. But most importantly – spread glasses, yes, common instruments to pick up eyesight. And many, who have not worked, were in business. People were able to house and workshop to perform slight work. And the productivity of labor in the country, in modern terms, has increased noticeably. As the war with the Spaniards and mercenaries, Hollandbuilt upscale ships mastered overseas territories began the African slave trade with America. Netherlands traded spices fromIndia andIndonesia, established colonies inBrazil, North America,South Africa and theCaribbean. The nation experienced an economic and cultural progress.

So during the Eighty Years’ War the Netherlands became a main trading center for northernEurope.

With all these achievements XVII century called the golden age of theNetherlands.

Tolerance and openness

In a society that depends on trade, freedom and tolerance were the chief principles. As the Netherlands were actually a republic, the rules are not the king, and well-born and wealthy urban merchants called the regents. Each city and region has its own laws and the high degree of autonomy.

In Amsterdam, in the XVII century, about 50% of the populations were immigrants of the first generation born outside the Netherlands. Given the number of immigrants of the second and third generations, as well as migrants from the countryside, you can say that at that time the population of Amsterdam consisted mostly of alien people. The city was relatively rich compared to the rest of Europe. It is easy to find a job. And migrants were tolerated because they were needed for economic development. The Netherlands also took while lots of refugees, including Flemish and French Protestants, Portuguese and German Jews.

Swing Scales

But back to the beginning of the revolution.

William I of Orange, a year before, in August 1567 the second Duke of Alba broke in Brussels with ten thousand Spaniards and mercenaries, appealed for help to the worst enemies of Spain – the Turks, to Suleiman the Magnificent.

Geza said: Better Turks than the Pope! The most wonderful thing is that the Ottoman Empire supported the Christians in opposition to the Habsburgs in Europe. Suleiman even claimed that he considers himself religious Protestants know, because they do not worship idols, believe in one God, and fought against the Pope and the Emperor.

The victory was on the side that the Spaniards, the Dutch. In 1575, Spaindeclared itself bankrupt. Mercenaries stopped paying salaries. And in 1576 thugs organized a revolt and began looting Antwerp, killing its inhabitants (killed eight thousand people). Dutch fans revenge, but to cope with the Spaniards are not so easy. Philip II declares William ofOrange ² outlawed. And in July 1584 the Spanish agent Balthazar Gerard kills the prince in his own chambers by three shots at close range.

But in 1587 Maurice of Orange, the son of William’s second marriage, he was appointed commander of the army of the nascent country. Outstanding military leader, strategist and tactician, he has reached a turning point in the war. The present borders of the Netherlands are mainly formed as a direct result of battles Maurice of Orange. The Spaniards could fight only in the border areas of new Netherlands, while in the middle of the country continued saying golden age. In 1602 was created the famous Dutch EastIndia group, which has strengthened the economic power of the state.

From 1609 to 1621 the Netherlands enjoyed a truce with Spain. But then the fighting resumed. In 1625, Maurice of Orange died and was replaced by a half-brother, Frederick Henry. He successfully led a lot of fights. Finally, January 30, 1648 in Munster peace treaty was signed between Spain and the Netherlands. The balance of power inWestern Europe was aligned with the real balance of power. Legally, theDutchRepublic was recognized as an independent state and has retained its territory occupied in the end of the war.

Thus, the Spanish korolevstvo- real world imperial- still lucky gold-silver from America, but to meet new competitors on land and sea: Englandand France. And here is another surprise: the revolt in the Netherlands! Eighty Years’ War, as they say themselves Dutch (1572-1648 years), or the Dutch bourgeois rebellion, as they called this vortex historians, began with the seizure gezami (nobles who rebelled against tyranny) in their hands the town ofBrielle.

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