This 2001 book charts the history of the States General - the parliament - of the Netherlands and its relations with two phases of monarchical rule in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. Unlike the English parliament, the States General was a composite body, representing the local estates of the separate provinces which were anxious to keep their autonomy. The history of the States General was determined by this structure, and by its relations with the monarchy: dukes of Burgundy in the fifteenth century, and Spanish Habsburgs in the sixteenth. Ideally, everyone was meant to cooperate. In practice, there was already a major crisis by the 1480s, and divisions from the 1560s led to decades of civil war. By 1600 the Netherlands had split between the United Provinces - a parliamentary regime, governed as a republic by the States General - and the Spanish Netherlands.
• A deeply researched history of the Netherlands parliament through successive monarchical rules, comparing the history of the Netherlands with other European countries • Covers objectively the violent quarrels of the period about religion, sovereignty and local privileges with a libertarian bias • The work of one of Britain's most respected senior historians and the fruit of decades of reflection and research
Illustrations; Acknowledgements; Abbreviations; Glossary; Maps; 1. Prologue; 2. The beginnings of the States General; 3. The first crisis (1477–94); 4. The Netherlands becomes part of a composite monarchy (1506–31): Philip the Handsome (1494–1506); 5. Dominium politicum et regale in a composite monarchy: the regencies of Margaret of Austria (1507–30); 6. Dominium politicum et regale in a composite monarchy: the regency of Mary of Hungary, I (1531–50); 7. The Netherlands at the centre of the Habsburg composite monarchy: the regency of Mary of Hungary, II (1550–5); 8. The Netherlands at the centre of the Habsburg composite monarchy: the governor-generalship of Emmanuel Philibert of Savoy (1555–9); 9. Rule from Madrid: the regency of Margaret of Parma (1559–67); 10. The governor-generalships of the duke of Alba (1567–73) and of Don Luis de Requesens (1573–6); 11. The beginnings of parliamentary government: Holland and Zeeland (1572–6); 12. Rule by the States General: myths and realities (1576–81); 13. Parliamentary government and dominium regale (1580–1600); 14. Epilogue; Bibliography; Index.
'… the reader is rewarded … with a magisterial sweep and expert grasp based on many decades of uninterrupted research and reflection on the themes in question.' The Times Literary Supplement
'… he has not only helped to discover similarities between the States General before and after the Revolt of the Netherlands, but also put into sharper focus major differences between the two periods.' Parliaments, Estates and Representation
'… an important scholarly contribution …' Reviews in History