History of Netherlands Part I

History of Netherlands 1

The Netherlands have a common prehistory with Central Europe and Western Europe. In Roman times, the Germanic tribes of the Batavians, Frisians and others bordered. to the Celtic-Germanic or purely Celtic ethnic groups south of the Rhine-Maas-Scheldt Delta. On the Germanic migrations of the 4th-6th centuries Century and the subsequent language and culture balance, the Germanic-Romance language border goes back.

From the early Middle Ages to 1559

During the division of the empire in 843, Flanders west of the Scheldt came to France (later called “Crown Flanders”), the rest of the area around the Meuse, Scheldt and Rhine to Lotharingia and in 879/925 to the East Franconian, later Holy Roman Empire. As a member of this, the Maaslande in particular experienced in the 10th – 12th centuries. Century flourished. Well-developed territories emerged early on: in the south of Flanders, Brabant, Hainaut, Namur, Limburg and that of the bishopric of Liège, in the north of Holland, which developed since the 11th century with the bishopric of Utrecht as the northern heartland, Zealand and Geldern. Some of these territories also played an independent role in European politics at times, v. a. Flanders, in which Bruges and Ghent were leading.

For the political, cultural and linguistic (since around 1200) independence of the Netherlands was decisive when it was brought together by the Dukes of Burgundy in the 14th and 15th centuries. With the marriage of the daughter of Charles the Bold, Maria of Burgundy, to the later Emperor Maximilian I, according to mathgeneral, the Netherlands came to the House of Habsburg in 1477 – after Maria had guaranteed the cities and territories their privileges in the Grand Privilege – which led the policy of making the The Netherlands pursued purposefully towards the Reich; Emperor Maximilian’s daughter Margarete of Austria worked in the interests of the Habsburg household as governor. In 1512, most of the provinces were combined to form the Burgundian Circle at a Cologne Reichstag as part of a new regional division of the empire ; Charles V added Friesland in 1524, Flanders, Utrecht and Overijssel in 1526, Groningen and Drenthe in 1543, Geldern in 1543, strengthened the special position of this group in the Burgundian Treaty of Augsburg in 1548, and laid down the right of succession for the Netherlands as a closed territory in the Pragmatic Sanction in 1549 and in 1555 transferred control of the 17 territories to his son, King Philip II of Spain. Economy and culture were in full bloom in the age of Charles V; Antwerp became the center of world trade with some early capitalist features. Initially, the Reformation found its way predominantly in the form of Lutheranism via Antwerp, and since the 1540s via the Walloon-Northern French textile cities in the form of Calvinism, but was bloodily suppressed by Charles V.

The fight for freedom

The fall of the northern Netherlands from Spain was caused by increased political, financial and religious pressure as well as the increasing curtailment of the traditional class freedoms by the royal power. Under the governor- general Margarete von Parma and her minister Granvelle, the military burdens, the heresy edicts, the re-establishment of numerous dioceses in the course of the diocesan reform of 1560. a. at the expense of important monastic foundations for the lower nobility, and through the fear of the introduction of the Inquisition violent contradiction loudly. This culminated in 1566 in the noble compromise of Breda, the submission of a petition (withdrawal of the Spanish troops, revocation of the Inquisition edict) by the lower nobility, ridiculed as Geusen, and in the iconoclasm of the popular masses. In 1567 Philip II sent Duke Alba with an army to the Netherlands; Through numerous executions (including Egmont, Horne) and coercive measures, he initially restored calm, but unleashed an uprising in 1568 through excessive arbitrariness. At its head came in 1572 William of Orange by being elected governor from the estates of Holland, Zealand and Utrecht; He had already exercised these offices in 1559-67 on behalf of Philip II. In the Ghent pacification, the other provinces joined the uprising in 1576. Due to the religious intolerance of the Geusen, the front against Spain with the Union of Arras (January 6, 1579) was blown up. The Union of Utrecht (January 23, 1579) therefore only led to the unification of most of the northern provinces. The representation of their estates (Staten generaal, States General) renounced himself completely from the Spanish king (deed of renunciation of July 26, 1581). Since it was not possible to find a new monarch as sovereign, the Estates General functioned from then on as the supreme body of the now federated (North) Netherlands Republic. The southern Netherlands were subjugated again by the general governor of Philip II, Alessandro Farnese, in 1585, including Antwerp (Spanish Netherlands). The military border between the two spheres of power in north Flanders and Brabant (generals land) gradually became the essential dividing line between north and south; religiously and politically, economically and socially, the two parts were completely reorganized differently.

History of Netherlands 1