Dutch Golden Age (Politics, Fashion, Architecture and Science)

2177 Words9 Pages
The Dutch Republic: In 1588 the Republic of the Netherlands was founded. It was an oligarchy, in which the government was run by well educated and/or wealthy people. The main governmental body was the States General. This consisted of a Land’s Advocate, later called the Grand Pensionary, and representatives from the seven provinces. They held meetings in The Hague, in het Binnenhof, where our parliament is situated now. The main goal of this assembly was to make decisions on foreign and economic affairs. The influence of the States General was not far reaching, so the provinces could make most of the decisions themselves. Every province had its council as well. It was called the States of Holland, Utrecht etc. All the seven provinces together formed the assembly of states. Seven Provinces: 1. Holland 2. Zeeland 3. Utrecht 4. Friesland 5. Drenthe 6. Overijssel 7. Groningen The stadholders played an important part in the political life of the Dutch Republic. Each province had a stadholder but they could be chosen for more than one province. Each stadholder was chosen by a province. Although the stadholders were not sovereigns they still had a lot of power which gave them an almost sovereign position. The stadholder of Holland, Zeeland and Utrecht also became the captain-general of the army. It was good for him if there was war because then he would have the chance to prove himself and he would have more power. Prince William II became stadholder in 1647. Soon after his appointment he clashed with the States General over the budget for the army. The States General didn’t want to supply more funds for the army after the Treaty of Munster which meant the end of the Eighty Years’ War. When William II died in 1650, the States didn’t want to choose another stadholder because he had tried to issue a lot of influence over the States General using the army.
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