Kingdom of the Netherlands
The Kingdom of the Netherlands known as the Netherlands, is a sovereign state and constitutional monarchy with the large majority of its territory in Western Europe and with several small island territories in the Caribbean Sea, in the West Indies islands. The four parts of the kingdom—the Netherlands, Curaçao and Sint Maarten—are constituent countries and participate on a basis of equality as partners in the kingdom. In practice, most of the kingdom's affairs are administered by the Netherlands—which comprises 98% of the kingdom's land area and population—on behalf of the entire kingdom; the Caribbean Sea islands countries of Aruba, Curaçao, Sint Maarten are dependent on the Netherlands for matters like foreign policy and defence, although they are autonomous to a certain degree, with their own parliaments. The vast majority in land area of the constituent country of the Netherlands is located in Europe, with the exception of the Caribbean Netherlands: its three special municipalities are located in the Caribbean Sea like the other three constituent countries.
The Kingdom of the Netherlands originated in the aftermath of French Emperor Napoleon I's defeat in 1815. In the year 1815, the Netherlands regained its independence from France under its First French Empire, which had annexed its northern neighbor in 1810, as the Sovereign Principality of the United Netherlands; the great powers of Europe, united against Napoleonic France, had decided in the secret treaty of the London Protocol to establish a single state in the territories that were the Dutch Republic/Batavian Republic/Kingdom of Holland, the Austrian Netherlands and the Prince-Bishopric of Liège, awarding rule over this to William, Prince of Orange and Nassau, although the southern territories remained under Prussian rule until Napoleon's return from his first exile on Elba. In March 1815, amidst the turmoil of the Hundred Days, the Sovereign Prince William of Orange and Nassau adopted the style of "King of the Netherlands". Following Napoleon's second defeat at the Battle of Waterloo in June 1815, the Vienna Congress supplied international recognition of William's unilateral move.
The new King of the Netherlands was made Grand Duke of Luxembourg, a part of the Kingdom that was, at the same time, a member state of the German Confederation. In 1830, Belgium seceded from the Kingdom, a step, recognised by the Netherlands only in 1839. At that point, Luxembourg became a independent country in a personal union with the Netherlands. Luxembourg lost more than half of its territory to Belgium. To compensate the German Confederation for that loss, the remainder of the Dutch province of Limburg received the same status that Luxembourg had enjoyed before, as a Dutch province that at the same time formed a Duchy of the German Confederation; that status was reversed when the German Confederation ceased to exist in 1867, replaced by the Prussian-led North German Confederation until the proclamation of a unified German Empire in 1871. The origin of the administrative reform of 1954 was the 1931 Statute of Westminster and the 1941 Atlantic Charter, signed by the Netherlands on 1 January 1942.
Changes were proposed in the 7 December 1942 radio speech by Queen Wilhelmina. In this speech, the Queen, on behalf of the Dutch government in exile in London, expressed a desire to review the relations between the Netherlands and its colonies after the end of the war. After liberation, the government would call a conference to agree on a settlement in which the overseas territories could participate in the administration of the Kingdom on the basis of equality; this speech had propaganda purposes. After Indonesia became independent, a federal construction was considered too heavy, as the economies of Suriname and the Netherlands Antilles were insignificant compared to that of the Netherlands. By the Charter for the Kingdom of the Netherlands, as enacted in 1954, a composite state was created known as the "Tripartite Kingdom of the Netherlands", consisting of the Netherlands and the Netherlands Antilles. Under the provisions of the Charter, both former colonies were granted internal autonomy.
Suriname and the Netherlands Antilles each got a Minister Plenipotentiary based in the Netherlands, who had the right to participate in Dutch cabinet meetings when it discussed affairs that applied to the Kingdom as a whole, when these affairs pertained directly to Suriname or the Netherlands Antilles. Delegates of Suriname and the Netherlands Antilles could participate in sessions of the First and Second Chamber of the States General. An overseas member could be added to the Council of State when appropriate. According to the Charter and the Netherlands Antilles were allowed to alter their "Basic Law"s; the right of the two autonomous countries to leave the Kingdom, was not recognised. Before the Charter for the Kingdom of the Netherlands was proclaimed in 1954, Netherlands New Guinea, the Netherlands Antilles "Colony of Curaçao and subordinates" (Kolonie Cu
The Caribbean Sea is a sea of the Atlantic Ocean in the tropics of the Western Hemisphere. It is bounded by Mexico and Central America to the west and south west, to the north by the Greater Antilles starting with Cuba, to the east by the Lesser Antilles, to the south by the north coast of South America; the entire area of the Caribbean Sea, the numerous islands of the West Indies, adjacent coasts, are collectively known as the Caribbean. The Caribbean Sea is one of the largest seas and has an area of about 2,754,000 km2; the sea's deepest point is the Cayman Trough, between the Cayman Islands and Jamaica, at 7,686 m below sea level. The Caribbean coastline has many gulfs and bays: the Gulf of Gonâve, Gulf of Venezuela, Gulf of Darién, Golfo de los Mosquitos, Gulf of Paria and Gulf of Honduras; the Caribbean Sea has the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef. It runs 1,000 km along the coasts of Mexico, Belize and Honduras; the name "Caribbean" derives from the Caribs, one of the region's dominant Native American groups at the time of European contact during the late 15th century.
After Christopher Columbus landed in the Bahamas in 1492, the Spanish term Antillas applied to the lands. During the first century of development, Spanish dominance in the region remained undisputed. From the 16th century, Europeans visiting the Caribbean region identified the "South Sea" as opposed to the "North Sea"; the Caribbean Sea had been unknown to the populations of Eurasia until 1492, when Christopher Columbus sailed into Caribbean waters on a quest to find a sea route to Asia. At that time the Western Hemisphere in general was unknown to most Europeans, although it had been discovered between the years 800 and 1000 by the vikings. Following the discovery of the islands by Columbus, the area was colonized by several Western cultures. Following the colonization of the Caribbean islands, the Caribbean Sea became a busy area for European-based marine trading and transports, this commerce attracted pirates such as Samuel Bellamy and Blackbeard; as of 2015 the area is home to borders 12 continental countries.
The International Hydrographic Organization defines the limits of the Caribbean Sea as follows: On the North. In the Windward Channel – a line joining Caleta Point and Pearl Point in Haïti. In the Mona Passage – a line joining Cape Engaño and the extreme of Agujereada in Puerto Rico. Eastern limits. From Point San Diego Northward along the meridian thereof to the 100-fathom line, thence Eastward and Southward, in such a manner that all islands and narrow waters of the Lesser Antilles are included in the Caribbean Sea as far as Galera Point. From Galera Point through Trinidad to Galeota Point and thence to Baja Point in Venezuela. Note that, although Barbados is an island on the same continental shelf, it is considered to be in the Atlantic Ocean rather than the Caribbean Sea; the Caribbean Sea is an oceanic sea situated on the Caribbean Plate. The Caribbean Sea is separated from the ocean by several island arcs of various ages; the youngest stretches from the Lesser Antilles to the Virgin Islands to the north east of Trinidad and Tobago off the coast of Venezuela.
This arc was formed by the collision of the South American Plate with the Caribbean Plate and includes active and extinct volcanoes such as Mount Pelee, the Quill on Sint Eustatius in the Caribbean Netherlands and Morne Trois Pitons on Dominica. The larger islands in the northern part of the sea Cuba, Hispaniola and Puerto Rico lie on an older island arc; the geological age of the Caribbean Sea is estimated to be between 160 and 180 million years and was formed by a horizontal fracture that split the supercontinent called Pangea in the Mesozoic Era. It is assumed the proto-caribbean basin existed in the Devonian period. In the early Carboniferous movement of Gondwana to the north and its convergence with the Euramerica basin decreased in size; the next stage of the Caribbean Sea's formation began in the Triassic. Powerful rifting led to the formation of narrow troughs, stretching from modern Newfoundland to the west coast of the Gulf of Mexico which formed siliciclastic sedimentary rocks. In the early Jurassic due to powerful marine transgression, water broke into the present area of the Gulf of Mexico creating a vast shallow pool.
The emergence of deep basins in the Caribbean occurred during the Middle Jurassic rifting. The emergence of these basins marked the beginning of the Atlantic Ocean and contributed to the destruction of Pangaea at the end of the late Jurassic. During the Cretaceous the Caribbean acquired the shape close to that seen today. In the early Paleogene due to Marine regression the Caribbean became separated from the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean by the land of Cuba and Haiti; the Caribbean remained like this for most of the Cenozoic until the Holocene when rising water levels of the oceans restored communication with the Atlantic Ocean. The Caribbean's floor is composed of sub-oceanic sediments of deep red clay in the deep basins and troughs. On continental slopes and ridges calcareous silts are found. Clay minerals having been deposited by the mainland river Orinoco and the Magdalena River. Deposits on th
Saint Kitts and Nevis
Saint Kitts and Nevis known as the Federation of Saint Christopher and Nevis, is an island country in the West Indies. Located in the Leeward Islands chain of the Lesser Antilles, it is the smallest sovereign state in the Western Hemisphere, in both area and population; the country is a Commonwealth realm, with Elizabeth II as head of state. The capital city is Basseterre on the larger island of Saint Kitts; the smaller island of Nevis lies 3 km southeast of Saint Kitts across a shallow channel called "The Narrows". The British dependency of Anguilla was also a part of this union, known collectively as Saint Christopher-Nevis-Anguilla. To the north-northwest lie the islands of Sint Eustatius, Saba, Saint Barthélemy, Saint-Martin/Sint Maarten and Anguilla. To the east and northeast are Antigua and Barbuda, to the southeast is the small uninhabited island of Redonda, the island of Montserrat, which has an active volcano. Saint Kitts and Nevis were among the first islands in the Caribbean to be settled by Europeans.
Saint Kitts was home to the first British and French colonies in the Caribbean, thus has been titled "The Mother Colony of the West Indies". Saint Kitts was named "Liamuiga", which translates as "fertile land", by the Kalinago who inhabited the island; the name is preserved via Mount Liamuiga. Nevis's pre-Columbian name was "Oualie", meaning "land of beautiful waters". Christopher Columbus upon sighting what is now Nevis in 1493 gave that island the name San Martín; the current name "Nevis" is derived from a Spanish name Nuestra Señora de las Nieves. This Spanish name means Our Lady of the Snows, it is not known who chose this name for the island, but it is a reference to the story of a fourth-century Catholic miracle: a summertime snowfall on the Esquiline Hill in Rome. The white clouds which wreathe the top of Nevis Peak reminded someone of the story of a miraculous snowfall in a hot climate; the island of Nevis upon first British settlement was referred to as "Dulcina", a name meaning "sweet one" in Spanish.
The original Spanish name was restored and used in the shortened form, "Nevis". There is some disagreement over the name. For many years it was thought that he named the island San Cristóbal, after Saint Christopher, his patron saint and the patron hallow of travellers. New studies suggest; the name "San Cristóbal" was given by Columbus to the island now known as Saba, 20 mi northwest. It seems that "San Cristóbal" came to be applied to the island of St. Kitts only as the result of a mapping error. No matter the origin of the name, the island was well documented as "San Cristóbal" by the 17th century; the first English colonists kept the English translation of this name, dubbed it "St. Christopher's Island". In the 17th century, a common nickname for Christopher was Kitt; this is why the island was informally referred to as "Saint Kitt's Island", further shortened to "Saint Kitts". Today the Constitution refers to the state as both "Saint Kitts and Nevis" and "Saint Christopher and Nevis", but the former is the one most used.
The name of the first inhabitants, pre-Arawakan peoples who settled the islands as early as 3000 years ago, is not known. They were followed by the Arawak peoples, or Taíno about 1000 BC. Peak native populations occurred between 500 and 600 AD; the warlike Island Caribs invaded about 800 AD. They had expanded north of St. Kitts by the time of the Spanish conquest. In 1623, the island was settled by the English, soon followed by the French; the Spanish were superior to the Kalinagos in terms of warfare, the French and English were more "economically aggressive and militarily determined" than the Spanish. The French and English, intent on self-enrichment through exploitation of the island's natural resources, understood from the start that their establishment of settlements in St. Kitts would be met with resistance, such resistance was waged by the Kalinago throughout the first three years of the settlements' existence. Throughout the process of establishing settlements on St. Kitts, as elsewhere in the Caribbean, the French and the English, like their predecessors, were intent on enslaving, expelling or exterminating the Kalinagos, since the latter's retention of land threatened the profitability of the European-controlled plantation economy.
To facilitate this objective, an ideological campaign was waged by colonial chroniclers, dating back to the Spanish, as they produced literature which systematically denied Kalinago humanity. In 1626, the Anglo-French settlers joined forces to massacre the Kalinago to pre-empt an imminent plan by the Caribs, conniving with the Kalinagos, to expel or kill. A Spanish expedition sent to enforce Spanish claims destroyed the English and French colonies and deported the settlers back to their respective countries in 1629; as part of the war settlement in 1630, the Spanish permitted the re-establishment of the English and French colonies. As Spanish power went into decline, Saint Kitts became the premier base for English and French expansion into the Caribbean. From St. Kitts, the British settled the islands of Antigua, Montserrat and Tortola, the French settled Martinique, the Guadeloupe archipelago and St. Barts. During the late-seventeenth century, Fra
.nl is the Internet country code top-level domain for the Netherlands. Registrations are processed via a network of participants, it is one of the more popular ccTLDs, ranked 6th in the quarterly VeriSign Domain Name Industry Brief of September 2016 for the third quarter of 2016, with over 5.6 million registered domain names. It was one of the first ccTLD to be registered, the first to be registered outside the United States, when the authority for the.nl domain was handed over to Piet Beertema of the Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica in 1986. Since January 31, 1996.nl domains are registered by the Stichting Internet Domeinregistratie Nederland, based in Arnhem. Most registrars are ISPs, IT service bureaus and media service bureaus, but several large enterprises with many brand names have become a registrar, or participant as SIDN calls them, a quite uncommon phenomenon in the domain name industry. Registrars have to pay SIDN a fee for each domain since April 1, 1996, until registration was free.
SIDN does not deal directly with Registrants. In the early days, most of the registrants were universities and research departments of large companies, such as Philips Natuurkundig Laboratorium. Official second-level domains do not exist. A number of companies have taken the opportunity to register domains like co.nl and com.nl, using them to sell third-level domains. These are not affiliated with SIDN. Individuals were allowed to register a second-level.nl domain since 2003. As a forerunner, individuals were allowed to register a third-level domain since 2000. Such'personal domains' had the form of janjansen.123.nl. They never became popular, registration has been suspended since 2006; because there are only around 500 of such domains registered, in contrast to about 5 million second-level domains, SIDN announced the discontinuance of personal domains as of 2008 on July 4, 2007..an –CC TLD for the former multi-nation Netherlands Antilles federation.aw –CC TLD for Aruba.bq –CC TLD for the Caribbean Netherlands.cw –CC TLD for Curaçao.sx –CC TLD for Sint Maarten Internet in the Netherlands.amsterdam.eu –CC TLD for the European Union.frl TLD for the province of Friesland.nl Domain Delegation Data.nl Registry website List of.nl registrars
Curaçao is a Lesser Antilles island in the southern Caribbean Sea and the Dutch Caribbean region, about 65 km north of the Venezuelan coast. It is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands; the country was part of the Curaçao and Dependencies colony and is now formally called the Country of Curaçao. Curaçao has a population over 160,000 in an area of 444 km2 and its capital is Willemstad. Before the dissolution of the Netherlands Antilles on 10 October 2010, Curaçao was administered as the "Island Territory of Curaçao", one of five island territories of the former Netherlands Antilles. In the 16th and 17th centuries, sailors on long voyages would get scurvy from lack of vitamin C. According to some accounts, Portuguese sailors who were ill were left at the island now known as Curaçao; when their ship returned, they had recovered cured from scurvy after eating fruit with vitamin C. From on the Portuguese referred to this as Ilha da Curação. Another explanation is that it is derived from the Portuguese word for heart, referring to the island as a centre in trade.
An unstressed o in Continental Portuguese is pronounced, so the Portuguese word for heart, coração, is pronounced. Spanish traders took the name over as Curaçao, followed by the Dutch. Another explanation is that Curaçao was the name by which the indigenous peoples of the island identified themselves, their autonym. Early Spanish accounts support this theory, as they refer to the indigenous peoples as Indios Curaçaos, or "healing Indians". From 1525, the island was featured on Spanish maps as Curaçote and Curasaore. By the 17th century, it appeared on most maps in Portuguese as Curazao. On a map created by Hieronymus Cock in 1562 in Antwerp, the island was referred to as Qúracao; the original inhabitants of Curaçao were Arawak people. Their ancestors had migrated to the island from the mainland of South America hundreds of years before Europeans arrived, they were believed to have migrated from the Amazon Basin. The first Europeans recorded as seeing the island were members of a Spanish expedition under the leadership of Alonso de Ojeda in 1499.
The Spaniards enslaved most of the Arawak as their labour force. They sometimes forcibly relocated the survivors to other colonies. In 1634, after the Netherlands achieved independence from Spain caused by Eighty Years' War, Dutch colonists started to occupy the island. European powers were trying to establish bases in the Caribbean; the Dutch West India Company founded the capital of Willemstad on the banks of an inlet called the Schottegat. Curaçao had been ignored by colonists; the natural harbour of Willemstad proved to be an ideal spot for trade. Commerce and shipping -- and piracy -- became. In addition, in 1662, the Dutch West India Company made Curaçao a centre for the Atlantic slave trade bringing slaves here for sale elsewhere in the Caribbean and on the mainland of South America. Sephardic Jews with ancestors from the Iberian Peninsula settled here with the Dutch and in then-Dutch Brazil. In the Franco-Dutch War, Count Jean II d'Estrées planned to attack Curaçao, his fleet – 12 men of war, three fireships, two transports, a hospital ship, 12 privateers – met with disaster, losing seven men-of-war and two other ships when they struck reefs off the Las Aves archipelago.
They had made a serious navigational error, hitting the reefs on 11 May 1678, a week after setting sail from Saint Kitts. Curaçao marked the events by a day of thanksgiving, celebrated for decades into the 18th century, to commemorate the island's escape from being invaded by the French. Although a few plantations were established on the island by the Dutch, the first profitable industry established on Curaçao was salt mining; the mineral was a lucrative export at the time and was a major factor for the island being part of international commerce. Many Dutch colonists grew affluent from the slave trade, the city built impressive colonial buildings. Curaçao architecture blends Dutch and Spanish colonial styles; the wide range of historic buildings in and around Willemstad has resulted in the capital being designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Landhouses and West African style kas di pal'i maishi are scattered all over the island; some can be visited. In 1795, a major slave revolt took place under the leaders Tula Rigaud, Louis Mercier, Bastian Karpata, Pedro Wakao.
Up to 4000 slaves on the northwest section of the island revolted. More than 1,000 slaves took part in extended gunfights. After a month, the slave owners suppressed the revolt. Curaçao's proximity to South America resulted in interaction with cultures of the coastal areas more than a century after independence of Netherlands from Spain. Architectural similarities can be seen between the 19th-century parts of Willemstad and the nearby Venezuelan city of Coro in Falcón State; the latter has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Netherlands established economic ties with Viceroyalty of New Granada, which includes present-day countries of Colombia and Venezuela. In the 19th century, Curaçaoans such as Manuel Piar and Luis Brión were prominently engaged in the wars of independen
Saba is a Caribbean island, the smallest special municipality of the Netherlands. It consists of the active volcano Mount Scenery, at 887 metres the highest point of the entire Netherlands. Saba has a land area of 13 square kilometres; as of January 2013, the population was 1,991 inhabitants, with a population density of 150 inhabitants per square kilometre. It is the smallest territory or sovereign state by permanent population in the Americas, its towns and major settlements are The Bottom, Hell's Gate and St. Johns. Christopher Columbus is said to have sighted the island on 13 November 1493, he did not land. In 1632 a group of shipwrecked Englishmen landed upon Saba, they stated. In 1635 a stray Frenchman claimed Saba for Louis XIII of France. In the 1630s, the Dutch Governor of the neighboring island of Sint Eustatius sent several Dutch families over to colonize the island for the Dutch West India Company. In 1664, refusing to swear allegiance to the English crown, these original Dutch settlers were evicted to St. Maarten by Jamaican governors Edward and Henry Morgan.
The Netherlands have been in continuous possession of Saba since 1816, after numerous flag changes during the previous centuries. By 2016 the island had been French for 12 years, English for 18 years, Dutch for 345 years. In the 17th and 18th centuries Saba's major industries were sugar and rum produced on plantations owned by Dutchmen living on St Eustatius, fishing lobster fishing. In the 17th century Saba was believed to be a favorable hideout for Jamaican pirates. England deported its "undesirable" people to live in the Caribbean colonies, some of them became pirates, a few taking haven on Saba; the island of Saba is forbidding and steep, a natural fortress, so the island became a private sanctuary for the families of smugglers and pirates. The most notable native Saban pirate was Hiram Beakes. Legitimate sailing and trade became important, many of the island's men took to the sea, during which time "Saba lace", pulled thread work, a Spanish form of needlework introduced by a nun from Venezuela, became an important product made by the island's women.
Throughout the late 19th century and early 20th century, the primary source of revenue for the island came from the lacework produced by the women. During this period of time, with most of the island's men gone out to sea, the island became known as "The Island of Women"; the remains of the settlements of 1630–1640 can be found on the west side at Tent Bay. These settlements were destroyed by a landslide in the 17th century. A status referendum was held in Saba on 5 November 2004. 86.05% of the population voted for closer links to the Netherlands. Saba is the northernmost active volcano in the Lesser Antilles Volcanic Arc chain of islands. At 887 metres, Mount Scenery is the highest point within the Kingdom of the Netherlands; the island is composed of a single rhomb-shaped volcano measuring 4.6 kilometres east to west and 4.0 kilometres north to south The oldest dated rocks on Saba are around 400,000 years old, the most recent eruption was shortly before the 1630s European settlement. Between 1995 and 1997, an increase in local seismic activity was associated with a 7°-12°C rise in the temperature of the hot springs on the island's northwest and southeast coasts.
There is a 8.6 hectares cloud forest located at and above 825 metres on top of the mountain referred to as the "Elfin Forest Reserve" because of its high altitude mist and mossy appearance. The most dominant tree in the cloud forest is the Mountain Mahogany, although hurricanes over the years have destroyed a large number of the mature trees. Despite the name, the mountain mahogany is not related to other mahogany species; the native mahogany trees are considered to be at risk of becoming extinct on Saba. In the underbrush of the mahogany trees, the Sierran palm and tree ferns dominate, with a large variety of epiphytes and Orchids growing on the trunks and branches of all the trees. Wild raspberries and plantain trees can be found growing on most of the mountain. All seven of the Lesser Antilles Endemic Bird Area restricted-range birds occur in the Elfin Forest Reserve. Below the cloud forest is a sub-montane forest, the variety and average number of species are less. Redwood and Mountain fuchsia tree trees grow wild in this zone, as well as cactus species such as the prickly pear, Seagrape trees.
On the lowest southern and eastern slopes of Saba are scattered shrubs. Saba National Land Park is a 35 hectares national park located on the north coast of Saba. Owned by the Sulphur Mining Company, the park was established in January 1998 and the property was turned over to the Saba Conservation Foundation in 1999, it stretches from the coastline all the way up to the cloud forest, encompasses all vegetation zones present on Saba. The coastline of Saba is rubble and rocky cliffs that are 100 metres or taller with no permanent beaches; the steep
Flag of the Netherlands
The flag of the Netherlands is a horizontal tricolour of red and blue. The current design originates as a variant of the late 16th century orange-white-blue Prinsenvlag, evolving in the early 17th century as the red-white-blue Statenvlag, the naval flag of the States-General of the Dutch Republic, making the Dutch flag the oldest tricolour flag in continuous use, it has inspired the seminal French flags. During the economic crisis of 1930s the old Prince's Flag with the colour orange gained some popularity among some people. To end the confusion, the colours red and blue and its official status as the national flag of the Kingdom of the Netherlands were reaffirmed by royal decree on 19 February 1937; the national flag of the Netherlands is a tricolour flag. The horizontal fesses are bands of equal size in the colours from top to bottom, red and blue; the flag proportions are 2:3. The color parameters were defined on 16 August 1949 as follows: The Dutch flag is identical to that of Luxembourg, except that it is shorter and its red and blue stripes are a darker shade.
Despite the visual similarity, there is no documented relationship between the two designs. The similarity of the two flags has given rise to a national debate to change the flag of Luxembourg, initiated by Michel Wolter in 2006, it has been suggested that during the 15th century, the colours red and blue were mentioned as the coastal signals for this area, with the 3 bands straight or diagonal, single or doubled, that the colours were taken from the coat of arms of the Bavarian house, the rulers of the county of Holland during 1354–1433, who used the Bavarian coat of arms quartered with the arms of the counts of Holland. At the end of the 15th century, when the majority of the Netherlands provinces were united under the Duke of Burgundy, the Cross of Burgundy Flag of the Duke of Burgundy was used for joint expeditions, which consisted of a red saltire resembling two crossed, roughly-pruned branches, on a white field. Under the House of Habsburg this flag remained in use. In 1568 provinces of the Low Countries rose in revolt against King Philip II of Spain, William Prince of Orange placed himself at the head of the rebels.
The etymology of the House of Orange is unrelated to the name of the colour. Usage of the colours orange and blue was based on the livery of William and was first recorded in the siege of Leiden in 1574, when Dutch officers wore orange-white-blue brassards; the first known full color depiction of the flag appeared in 1575. In Ghent in 1577, William was welcomed with a number of theatrical allegories represented by a young girl wearing orange and white; the first explicit reference to a naval flag in these colours is found in the ordonnances of the Admiralty of Zeeland, dated 1587, i.e. shortly after William's death. The colour combination of orange and blue is considered the first Dutch flag; the 400th anniversary of the introduction of the Dutch flag was commemorated in the Netherlands by the issue of a postage stamp in 1972. That was based on the fact that in 1572 the Watergeuzen, the pro-Dutch privateers, captured Den Briel in name of William, Prince of Orange. However, it is uncertain whether they took an orange-white-blue flag with them on the event, although they started using an orange-white-blue tricolour somewhat in the 1570s.
It became known as the Prinsenvlag and served as the basis for the former South African flag, the flags of New York City and the Flag of Albany, New York, all three former dominions of the Dutch Republic. Red as replacement for orange appeared as early as 1596, but more after about 1630, as indicated by paintings of that time, it has been suggested. It appears that prior to 1664, the red-white-blue tricolour was known as the "Flag of Holland". In 1664, the States of Zeeland, one of the other revolting provinces, complained about this, a resolution of the States-General introduced the name "States Flag"; the Dutch navy between 1588 and 1630 always displayed the Prince's Flag, after 1663 always the States Flag, with both flag variants being in use during the period of 1630–1662. The red-white-blue triband flag as used in the 17th century is said to have influenced the seminal Russian flag and the French flag. With the Batavian Revolution in the Netherlands in the last decade of the 18th century, the subsequent conquest by the French, the name "Prince's Flag" was forbidden and the red-white-blue of the Statenvlag was the only flag allowed, analogous as is was to France's own tricolour, chosen just a few months earlier influenced by that same Statenvlag.
In 1796 the red division of the flag was embellished with the figure of a Netherlands maiden, with a lion at her feet, in the upper left corner. In one hand she bore a shield with the Roman fasces and in the other a lance crowned with the cap of liberty; this flag had a life as short as that of the Batavian Republic. Louis Bonaparte, made king of Holland by his brother the Emperor Napoleon, wished to pursue a purely Dutch policy and to respect national sentiments as much as possible, he restored the old tricolour. His pro-Dutch policies led to conflicts with his brother and the Netherlands were incorporated into the French Empire. In 1810 its