The Rise of the Dutch Kingdom

The Rise of the Dutch Kingdom

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Excerpt: Paris that being minister to The Hague was as good fun as an evening at vaudeville. This, however, was merely the beginning. Much else was to follow soon. Here we have a country becoming every day more like a French department. And what did the thinking part of the nation do? It continued its petty political quarrels as if it consisted of a lot of villagers engaged in the habitual row in the local vestry. The Orangeistic party of these years reminds us strongly of those pious supporters of the Pope who wish to see the whole kingdom of Italy go to smash in order that his Holiness may return to govern a city which during many previous centuries of his august rule was turned into a byword for civic mismanagement and municipal corruption. The Orangeists sat in their little corner and jeered at everything the patriots did. But they lacked the courage and the conviction to come forward and assist in such constructive work as the revolutionary parties tried to perform. In previous chapters we have had a chance to talk with considerable irritation about much of what the Patriots did. Do not expect the historian to read through the twenty-three volumes of speeches of the assembly, to study the twelve volumes of Wagenaar containing the history of those three years, to wade through the endless documents addressed to free citizens, and not to feel a personal resentment against his ancestors, who, while the country was in such grave danger, talked and talked and talked without any regard to the threatening facts about them. It is true that very much can be said in defense of the Patriotic statesmen. They had never enjoyed any political training. For centuries they and their families had been kept out of all governmental institutions. They had not even been allowed to run their own town meeting. There had been no school for parliamentary methods or oratory. And since the death of Paulus they had not possessed a leader of sufficient influence to force one...
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Product details

  • Paperback | 50 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 3mm | 109g
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236696522
  • 9781236696526