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The Founding of the Dutch RepublicWar, Finance, and Politics in Holland, 1572-1588$
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James Tracy

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199209118

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199209118.001.0001

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The Habsburg Netherlands, 1549–1567

The Habsburg Netherlands, 1549–1567

(p.24) 1 The Habsburg Netherlands, 1549–1567
The Founding of the Dutch Republic

James D. Tracy (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

In the forty years between 1520 and 1559, the Habsburg and Valois dynasties were at war for twenty years. This struggle for hegemony in Europe entailed not just recurring warfare along the Franco‐Netherlandish frontier, but also a leapfrogging competition in military technology (artillery, and fortresses built to withstand bombardment) and military organization (building mercenary armies from specialized units recruited in different nations). In the 1540s and especially the 1550s, French attacks came by sea as well as by land, forcing the Netherlands government, for the first time, to think about how to control the North Sea. At sea and on land, commanders who acquired up‐to‐date military skills by fighting for the Habsburgs in the 1550s would in the 1570s fight one another.

Keywords:   Habsburg–Valois wars, Military revolution, Mercenary armies, underline Landsknechte (German infantry), Artillery, Fortification, Sea power, Philip II, William of Orange, Duke of Alba

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