Dutch Republic DBQ
In the 17th century, the Dutch Republic experienced a Golden Age and was able to maintain security, unity, and prosperity in its society and economy. The nation was considered a leading power, especially in trade and ideas, within Europe. However, it was not long before circumstances changed and the state face many problems establishing peace and agreement. By the end of the 17th and the beginning of the 18th centuries, there had been a significant change in the Dutch Republic’s power, for multiple factors and reasons. From 1650 to 1713, not only external factors such as European intervention and British trading competition, but also internal division damaged the Dutch Republic and challenged its authority as a great power. European nations, sometimes in united effort, tried and succeeded in causing the Dutch problems. The table displaying the number of seized ships during the Angle-Dutch Wars is a clear example of this challenge that the Dutch had to face (doc. 3). By looking at the table, it is evident that into the late 17th century, the British were surpassing the Dutch, which was gradually losing security in not only numbers, but also in superiority as a naval power. In 1671, the Dutch decided to address the growing problem, revealing through the Amsterdam City Council their opinions that their neighboring countries were indeed targeting their trade and power (doc. 7). This implied how there was a united European effort to challenge the Dutch, and the city council, as the highest decision-making authority in the Dutch Republic, could come this reliable conclusion, because they were directly involved in the nation’s trading affairs and could correctly analyze the situation. Because of this, the council showed how the Dutch were truly threatened by the rest of Europe. This threat seemed to have made its impact, as the national debt is shown to have increased more than three-fold from 1688 to 1713 (doc. 12). This may have been...
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