Going Dutch

Going Dutch : How England Plundered Holland's Glory

3.53 (205 ratings by Goodreads)
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In Going Dutch, renowned writer Lisa Jardine tells the remarkable history of the relationship between England and Holland, two of Europe's most important colonial powers at the dawn of the modern age. Jardine, the author of The Awful End of Prince William the Silent, demonstrates that England's rise did not come at the expense of the Dutch as is commonly thought, but was actually a "handing on" of the baton of cultural and intellectual supremacy to a nation expanding in international power and influence.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 406 pages
  • 144.78 x 238.76 x 43.18mm | 1,156.65g
  • New York, NY, United States
  • English
  • Maps; Illustrations, color; Illustrations, black and white
  • 0060774088
  • 9780060774080
  • 1,170,952

Review quote

Jardine meticulously studies the exchange of ideas between England and Holland...she leaves no stone unturned...Absorbing, enjoyable reading. --Kirkus Reviews"
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Back cover copy

On November 5, 1688, William of Orange, Protestant ruler of the Dutch Republic, landed at Torbay in Devon with a force of twenty thousand men. The Glorious Revolution that followed forced James II to abdicate, and William and his wife, Mary, were jointly crowned king and queen on April 11, 1689. How was it that this almost bloodless coup took place with such apparent ease yet was not recognized as the full-blooded invasion and conquest it undoubtedly was?

In this wide-ranging book, Lisa Jardine assembles new research in political and social history, together with the histories of art, music, gardening, and science, to show how Dutch tolerance, resourcefulness, and commercial acumen had effectively conquered Britain long before William and his English wife arrived in London. Going Dutch is the remarkable story of the relationship between two of Europe's most important colonial powers at the dawn of the modern age.

Throughout the seventeenth century, Holland and England were engaged in an energetic commercial and cultural exchange that survived three Anglo-Dutch wars. Dutch influence also permanently reshaped England's cultural landscape. Whether through scientific discoveries, the design of royal palaces and gardens, or the introduction of works by the greatest painters of the age--Rubens, Rembrandt, and Van Dyck among them--the England we know today owes an extraordinary amount to its fierce competitor across the "narrow sea."

Going Dutch demonstrates how individuals, such as Christopher Wren, Isaac Newton, and successive generations of the remarkable Huygens family, who were usually represented as isolated geniuses working in the enclosed environment of their native country in fact developed their ideas within a context of the easy Anglo-Dutch relations that laid the vital groundwork for the European Enlightenment and the Scientific Revolution.

Above all, Lisa Jardine tests the traditional view that the rise of England as a world power took place at the expense of the Dutch. She finds that it was a "handing off" of the baton of cultural and intellectual supremacy to a Britain expanding in international power and influence. Going Dutch not only challenges conventional interpretations of England's role in Enlightenment-era Europe but raises questions about the position in which post-empire Britain finds itself today.
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Rating details

205 ratings
3.53 out of 5 stars
5 17% (35)
4 32% (66)
3 39% (79)
2 11% (23)
1 1% (2)
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