The Dutch War

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Dutch War 16521654
Once the rump through the army had defeated Scotland and Ireland it looked to
strengthen its position in European affairs. It tried to do this by coming to an agreement
with the united provinces. The united provinces were a republic, but members of the
house of orange, were often the head of state. The head of state in the united provinces
was called the stadtholder. United provinces were a republic but the royal family were
still very influential. William II died in 1650 there was a vacancy for stadtholder until
1672, so the position was open for 22 years, however, a republican called John De Witt
became a leading figure.
The rump wanted to strike a deal with the Dutch, an AngloDutch alliance was a good
Both nations were protestant
Both were antiSpanish
Both were republics
The rump sent a diplomatic delegation to the Dutch capital Hague. Although united
province was a republic there was still a lot of support for the House of Orange. Lots of
people did not welcome Charles I execution, it made Dutch hostile to the English. When
diplomates arrived they were greeted with shouts of "regicides". Diplomats returned to
England and Oliver St John condemned the Dutch and their treatment of the diplomats.
This failing out with the Dutch allowed motivation for new laws to be passed in 1651 by
the Rump Navigation Act. Stronger motive was that the Rump was keen to weaken the
commercial strength of the united provinces. Merchants campaigned for a war with the
Dutch. Dutch controlled a lot of Europe's trade and England's coastal shipping.
Navigation Act provoked a war between England and united Provinces, this started in
May 1652, when Dutch and English fleets met off the Kent coast. Dutch asked the lower
their flags in respect to the English but canons fired instead. War was a series naval
battles, fought in the North Sea and the English Channel. The Dutch had a very
successful naval commander admiral van Tromp, but he died in battle in 1653 and after
that the war turned in England's favour. Robert Blake was a leading English naval
commander who helped gain the upper hand.
The navy became strengthened over time. The English blockaded the Dutch coast so
that by December 1653 the Dutch had suffered a lot of shipping loses and were keen to
end the war. Dutch economy was being ruined, because of the English blockade. English
didn't want to continue a war against its fellow Protestants. Cromwell wanted it to end;
there was a convenient scape goat in the Spanish for the start of the Dutch war. This was
an allegation made by puritan propagandists Jesuits agents in Holland and England had
conspired to create hostilities between the two nations as a way of weakening the two
countries so that Spain could strengthen its authority in Europe.
Peace treaty agreed in 1654 Treaty of Westminster


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