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Challenges To The Dutch Essay

985 words - 4 pages

Prior to the 1650’s, the Dutch Republic was the wealthiest and most powerful province in Holland through Amsterdam, the leading force in trade and banking. Many European nations were jealous of their success and wanted it for themselves which resulted in conflicts between the Dutch and many European powers. As a result, the Dutch Republic entered a period of decline until the Peace of Utrecht of 1713. The expensive wars with England and France, decline in trade and distrust between the Dutch provinces led to challenges in security, unity and prosperity of the Republic.
The wars with England and France threatened the national security of the Dutch Republic. According to document 1, a lot of naval battles between the English and the Dutch occurred on Dutch trade and fishing routes. The constant attacks were a threat to the national security because Dutch merchants and citizens were getting captured by foreign governments. The reason the English attacked the Dutch ships so much is to seize their ships. Document 3 shows that the English seized at least 1,500 more ships than the Dutch, who only seized 500. This means that the Dutch grew weaker as they lost their ships and their enemies, the English, grew stronger as they gained ships. The English could use their newly obtained ships to perform more naval attacks on the Dutch which further challenged the security of the provinces. Some merchants were afraid of sailing anymore and argued for free warships protection, like the anonymous merchant in document 5. This document shows that merchants were beginning to lose their faith in their government’s security and were worried about being attacked while trading. Attacks on merchant ships were not the only source of threat for the Dutch Republic as foreign governments tried to benefit from attacking the Dutch. Document 6 discusses a plot by the French and English to jointly declare war on the Dutch Republic. This is an obvious challenge to the security of the Dutch as England and France are both very large and prosperous countries who have larger military forces. England continued their interest in the Dutch Republic by trying to encourage war between it and France as stated in document 8. The English want the French to weaken the Dutch Republic, allowing themselves to become more prosperous in trade. This greed and urge for war poses a threat to the Dutch because it shows that England is very determined to stop the Dutch prosperity. All of this indicates that the challenges to Dutch security were external and mostly only started to stop the success of Dutch trade and banking.
The decline of trade and rise in expensive warns lead to a challenge in the economic prosperity of the Dutch Republic. As previously stated, document 1 shows the naval battles between England and Dutch Republic. When England attacked Dutch ships they caused...

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