South Holland is a province of the Netherlands with a population of just over 3.6 million as of 2015 and a population density of about 1,300/km2, making it the country's most populous province and one of the world's most densely populated areas. Situated on the North Sea in the west of the Netherlands, South Holland covers an area of 3,403 km2, of which 585 km2 is water, it borders North Holland to the north and Gelderland to the east, North Brabant and Zeeland to the south. The provincial capital is The Hague. Archaeological discoveries in Hardinxveld-Giessendam indicate that the area of South Holland has been inhabited since at least ca. 7,500 years before present by nomadic hunter-gatherers. Agriculture and permanent settlements originated around 2,000 years based on excavations near Vlaardingen. In the classical antiquity, South Holland was part of the Roman Province of Germania Inferior, the border of the Roman Empire ran along the Old Rhine and reached the North Sea near Katwijk; the Romans built fortresses along the border, such as Praetorium Agrippinae near modern-day Valkenburg, Matilo near modern-day Leiden, Albaniana near modern-day Alphen aan den Rijn.
A city was founded near Forum Hadriani. It was built according to the grid plan, facilitated a square, a court, a bathhouse and several temples. After the departure of the Romans, the area belonged to the Frisian Kingdom, after which it was conquered by the Frankish king Dagobert I in 636. In 690, the Anglo-Saxon monk Willibrord arrived near Katwijk and was granted permission to spread Roman Catholicism by the Frankish king Pepin II, he accordingly founded a church in Oegstgeest, after which the entire area was Christianised. The area was appointed to East Francia in the Treaty of Verdun in 843, after which the king granted lands to Gerolf, who had helped him claim the lands; this was the birth of the County of Holland. Gerolf was succeeded by Dirk I, who continued to rule Holland under the Frankish king. In 1248, count William II ordered the construction of the Ridderzaal, finished by his son and successor Floris V; the first city in South Holland to receive city rights was Dordrecht, which did so in 1220.
The city retained a dominant position in the area until it was struck by a series of floods in the late 14th century. The same century saw a series of civil wars, the Hook and Cod wars, concerning the succession of count William IV. Both his daughter Jacqueline and his brother John, the latter supported by Philip the Good, Duke of Burgundy, claimed the throne; the conflict ended with John victorious. Overall, the area of South Holland remained agrarian throughout the late Middle Ages; this changed around 1500. During the Eighty Years' War, the area of South Holland was the scene of the Capture of Brielle, the Siege of Leiden and the assassination of William the Silent; the United Netherlands declared their independence in 1581, Holland emerged as the country's dominant province, with important trading cities such as Leiden, Delft and Dordrecht. In 1575, the Netherlands' first university was founded in Leiden by William the Silent; the Hague, which had originated around the castle of the counts of Holland, became its new political centre.
Both the States of Holland and the States General seated in the Binnenhof. The Dutch Golden Age blossomed in the 17th century; the south of Holland, back often referred to as the Zuiderkwartier, was the birthplace and residence of scientists such as Antoni van Leeuwenhoek and Christiaan Huygens, philosophers such as Baruch Spinoza and Pierre Bayle, painters such as Johannes Vermeer, Rembrandt van Rijn and Jan Steen. The province of South Holland as it is today has its origins in the period of French rule from 1795 to 1813; this was a time of bewildering changes to the Dutch system of provinces. In 1795, the Batavian Republic was proclaimed and the old order was swept away by a series of constitutional changes in the following years. In the Constitution enacted on 23 April 1798, the old borders were radically changed; the republic was reorganised into eight departments with equal populations. The south of Holland was split up into three departments; the islands in the south were merged with Zeeland and the west of North Brabant to form the Department of the Scheldt and Meuse.
The north of the area became the Department of the Delf. A small region in the east of the area became part of the Department of the Rhine, which spanned much of Gelderland and Utrecht. In 1801, the old borders were restored; the reorganisation had been short-lived, but it gave birth to the concept of a division of Holland, creating less dominant provinces. In 1807, Holland was reorganised once again; this time, the department was split in two. The south, what would become South Holland, was called the Department of Maasland; this did not last long. In 1810, all the Dutch provinces were integrated into the French Empire, Maasland was renamed Bouches-de-la-Meuse. After the defeat of the French in 1813, this organisation remained unchanged for a year or so; when the 1814 Constitution was introduced, most borders were restored to their situation before the French period. The north and south of Holland were reunited as the province of Holland. However, the division hadn't been undone. Since its re-establishment in 1814, Holland had always had two King's Commissioners, one for the north and one for the south.
Though the province had been reunited, the two areas were still treated differently in s
Canonization is the act by which a Christian church declares that a person who has died was a saint, upon which declaration the person is included in the "canon", or list, of recognized saints. A person was recognized as a saint without any formal process. Different processes were developed, such as those used today in the Roman Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, Oriental Orthodox Church and the Anglican Communion; the first persons honored as saints were the martyrs. Pious legends of their deaths were considered affirmations of the truth of their faith in Christ; the Roman Rite's Canon of the Mass contains only the names of martyrs, along with that of the Blessed Virgin Mary and, since 1962, that of St. Joseph her spouse. By the fourth century, however, "confessors"—people who had confessed their faith not by dying but by word and life—began to be venerated publicly. Examples of such people are Saint Hilarion and Saint Ephrem the Syrian in the East, Saint Martin of Tours and Saint Hilary of Poitiers in the West.
Their names were inserted in the diptychs, the lists of saints explicitly venerated in the liturgy, their tombs were honoured in like manner as those of the martyrs. Since the witness of their lives was not as unequivocal as that of the martyrs, they were venerated publicly only with the approval by the local bishop; this process is referred to as "local canonization". This approval was required for veneration of a reputed martyr. In his history of the Donatist heresy, Saint Optatus recounts that at Carthage a Catholic matron, named Lucilla, incurred the censures of the Church for having kissed the relics of a reputed martyr whose claims to martyrdom had not been juridically proved, and Saint Cyprian recommended that the utmost diligence be observed in investigating the claims of those who were said to have died for the faith. All the circumstances accompanying the martyrdom were to be inquired into. Evidence was sought from the court records of the trials or from people, present at the trials.
Saint Augustine of Hippo tells of the procedure, followed in his day for the recognition of a martyr. The bishop of the diocese in which the martyrdom took place set up a canonical process for conducting the inquiry with the utmost severity; the acts of the process were sent either to the metropolitan or primate, who examined the cause, after consultation with the suffragan bishops, declared whether the deceased was worthy of the name of'martyr' and public veneration. Acts of formal recognition, such as the erection of an altar over the saint's tomb or transferring the saint's relics to a church, were preceded by formal inquiries into the sanctity of the person's life and the miracles attributed to that person's intercession; such acts of recognition of a saint were authoritative, in the strict sense, only for the diocese or ecclesiastical province for which they were issued, but with the spread of the fame of a saint, were accepted elsewhere also. The Church of England, the Mother Church of the Anglican Communion, canonized Charles I as a saint, in the Convocations of Canterbury and York of 1660.
In the Roman Catholic Church, both Latin and constituent Eastern churches, the act of canonization is reserved to the Apostolic See and occurs at the conclusion of a long process requiring extensive proof that the candidate for canonization lived and died in such an exemplary and holy way that they are worthy to be recognized as a saint. The Church's official recognition of sanctity implies that the person is now in Heaven and that they may be publicly invoked and mentioned in the liturgy of the Church, including in the Litany of the Saints. In the Roman Catholic Church, canonization is a decree that allows universal veneration of the saint in the liturgy of the Roman Rite. For permission to venerate locally, only beatification is needed. For several centuries the Bishops, or in some places only the Primates and Patriarchs, could grant martyrs and confessors public ecclesiastical honor. Only acceptance of the cultus by the Pope made the cultus universal, because he alone can rule the universal Catholic Church.
Abuses, crept into this discipline, due as well to indiscretions of popular fervor as to the negligence of some bishops in inquiring into the lives of those whom they permitted to be honoured as saints. In the Medieval West, the Apostolic See was asked to intervene in the question of canonizations so as to ensure more authoritative decisions; the canonization of Saint Udalric, Bishop of Augsburg by Pope John XV in 993 was the first undoubted example of Papal canonization of a saint from outside of Rome. Thereafter, recourse to the judgment of the Pope was had more frequently. Toward the end of the eleventh century the Popes judged it necessary to restrict episcopal authority regarding canonization, therefore decreed that the virtues and miracles of persons proposed for public veneration should be examined in councils, more in general councils. Pope Urban II, Pope Calixtus II, Pope Eugene III conformed to this discipline. Hugh de Boves, Archbishop of Rouen, canonized Walter of Pontoise, or St. Gaultier, in 1153, the final saint in Western Europe to be canonized by an authority other than the Pope: "The last case of canonization by a metropolitan is said to have been that of St. Gaultier, or Gaucher, bbot of Pontoise, by the Archbishop of Rouen.
A decree of
The Papal States the State of the Church, were a series of territories in the Italian Peninsula under the direct sovereign rule of the Pope, from the 8th century until 1870. They were among the major states of Italy from the 8th century until the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia unified the Italian Peninsula by conquest in a campaign concluded in 1861 and definitively in 1870. At their zenith, the Papal States covered most of the modern Italian regions of Lazio, Marche and Romagna, portions of Emilia; these holdings were considered to be a manifestation of the temporal power of the pope, as opposed to his ecclesiastical primacy. By 1861, much of the Papal States' territory had been conquered by the Kingdom of Italy. Only Lazio, including Rome, remained under the Pope's temporal control. In 1870, the Pope lost Lazio and Rome and had no physical territory at all, except the Basilica of St Peter and the papal residence and related buildings around the Vatican quarter of Rome, which the new Italian state did not occupy militarily.
In 1929 the head of the Italian government, at the time the Italian Fascist leader Benito Mussolini, ended the crisis between unified Italy and the Holy See by negotiating the Lateran Treaty, signed by the two parties. This recognized the sovereignty of the Holy See over a newly created international territorial entity, the Vatican City State, limited to a token territory; the Papal States were known as the Papal State. The territories were referred to variously as the State of the Church, the Pontifical States, the Ecclesiastical States, or the Roman States. To some extent the name used varied with the preferences and habits of the European languages in which it was expressed. For its first 300 years the Catholic Church was persecuted and unrecognized, unable to hold or transfer property. Early congregations met in rooms set aside for that purpose in the homes of well-to-do individuals, a number of early churches, known as titular churches and located on the outskirts of Ancient Rome, were held as property by individuals, rather than by the Church itself.
Nonetheless, the properties held nominally or by individual members of the Roman churches would be considered as a common patrimony handed over successively to the legitimate "heir" of that property its senior deacons, who were, in turn, assistants to the local bishop. This common patrimony attached to the churches at Rome, thus under its ruling bishop, became quite considerable, including as it did not only houses etc. in Rome or nearby but landed estates, such as latifundias, whole or in part, across Italy and beyond. This system began to change during the reign of the emperor Constantine I, who made Christianity legal within the Roman Empire, restoring to it any properties, confiscated; the Lateran Palace was the first significant new donation to the Church, most a gift from Constantine himself. Other donations followed in mainland Italy but in the provinces of the Roman Empire, but the Church held all of these lands as a private landowner, not as a sovereign entity. When in the 5th century the Italian peninsula passed under the control of Odoacer and the Ostrogoths, the Church organization in Italy, with the pope at its head, submitted of necessity to their sovereign authority while asserting its spiritual primacy over the whole Church.
The seeds of the Papal States as a sovereign political entity were planted in the 6th century. Beginning in 535, the Byzantine Empire, under emperor Justinian I, launched a reconquest of Italy that took decades and devastated Italy's political and economic structures. Just as these wars wound down, the Lombards entered the peninsula from the north and conquered much of the countryside. By the 7th century, Byzantine authority was limited to a diagonal band running from Ravenna, where the Emperor's representative, or Exarch, was located, to Rome and south to Naples, plus coastal enclaves. With effective Byzantine power weighted at the northeast end of this territory, the pope, as the largest landowner and most prestigious figure in Italy, began by default to take on much of the ruling authority that Byzantines were unable to project to the area around the city of Rome. While the popes remained Byzantine subjects, in practice the Duchy of Rome, an area equivalent to modern-day Latium, became an independent state ruled by the pope.
The Church's independence, combined with popular support for the papacy in Italy, enabled various popes to defy the will of the Byzantine emperor. The pope and the exarch still worked together to control the rising power of the Lombards in Italy; as Byzantine power weakened, the papacy took an ever-larger role in defending Rome from the Lombards through diplomacy. In practice, the papal efforts served to focus Lombard aggrandizement on Ravenna. A climactic moment in the founding of the Papal States was the agreement over boundaries embodied in the Lombard king Liutprand's Donation of Sutri to Pope Gregory II; when the Exarchate of
Brielle called Den Briel is a town and historic seaport in the western Netherlands, in the province of South Holland, on the north side of the island of Voorne-Putten, at the mouth of the New Maas. The municipality covers an area of 31.14 km2 of which 3.58 km2 is water. In 2017 its population was 16,976; the municipality of Brielle includes the communities Vierpolders and Zwartewaal. Brielle is a old, fortified town, its name is derived from the Celtic word brogilo. The oldest writings about Brielle indicate. Den ouden Briel must have been situated somewhere else on the Voorne-Putten Island, it received city rights in 1306. The city was for a long time the seat of the Count of Voorne, until this fiefdom was added to Holland in 1371, it traded with the countries around the Baltic Sea. Brielle had its own trading colony in Sweden. During the Eighty Years' War between the Netherlands and Spain, the Capture of Brielle on April 1, 1572, by Protestant rebels, the Watergeuzen, marked a turning point in the conflict, as many towns in Holland began to support William of Orange against the Spanish Duke Fernando Álvarez de Toledo, 3rd Duke of Alba, sent to pacify The Netherlands.
This event is still celebrated each year on the night before. Dutch students are taught a short rhyme to remember this fact, which rhyme refers to April Fools' Day: In Dutch, "bril" is the word for "glasses," and it rhymes with Briel. After the capture of Brielle the Protestant rebels tortured and murdered the Catholic Martyrs of Gorkum and Brielle has become a pilgrimage location since then. In August 1585, Brielle was one of the four Dutch towns that became an English possession by the Treaty of Nonsuch when Queen Elizabeth I received it as security of payment for 5000 soldiers and used by the Dutch in their struggle against the Spanish; the first English governor of Brielle was Thomas Cecil, 1st Earl of Exeter, succeed by Edward Conway, 1st Viscount Conway who named his daughter Brilliana in honour of the city. English garrisons were stationed here and at Flushing. In 1617, these cities returned to the Netherlands. Brielle is twinned with: Queenborough, since 1967 Havlíčkův Brod, Czech Republic, since 1985 Historisch Museum Den Briel Official website http://www.catharijnekerk.nl Website of St Catharijnekerk
's-Hertogenbosch, colloquially known as Den Bosch, is a city and municipality in the Southern Netherlands with a population of 152,968. It is the capital of the province of North Brabant; the city's official name is a contraction of the Dutch des Hertogen bosch—"the Duke's forest". The duke in question was Duke Henry I of Brabant, whose family had owned a large estate at nearby Orthen for at least four centuries, he founded a new town located on some forested dunes in the middle of a marsh. At age 26, he granted's-Hertogenbosch city rights and the corresponding trade privileges in 1185; this is, the traditional date given by chroniclers. The original charter has been lost, his reason for founding the city was to protect his own interests against encroachment from Gelre and Holland. It was soon rebuilt; some remnants of the original city walls may still be seen. In the late 14th century, a much larger wall was erected to protect the expanded settled area. Artificial waterways were dug to serve as a city moat, through which the rivers Dommel and Aa were diverted.
The birthplace and home of one of the greatest painters of the northern Renaissance, Hieronymus Bosch,'s-Hertogenbosch suffered a catastrophic fire in 1463, which the 13-year-old Bosch witnessed. Until 1520, the city flourished, becoming the second largest population centre in the territory of the present Netherlands, after Utrecht; the city was a center of music, composers, such as Jheronimus Clibano, received their training at its churches. Others held positions there: Matthaeus Pipelare was musical director at the Confraternity of Our Lady; the wars of the Reformation changed the course of the city's history. It became an independent bishopric. During the Eighty Years' War, the city took the side of the Habsburg authorities and thwarted a Calvinist coup, it was besieged several times by Prince Maurice of Orange, stadtholder of most of the Dutch Republic, who wanted to bring's-Hertogenbosch under the rule of the rebel United Provinces. The city was defended by Claude de Berlaymont known as Haultpenne.
In the years of Truce, before the renewed fighting after 1618, the fortifications were expanded. The surrounding marshes made a siege of the conventional type impossible, the fortress, deemed impregnable, was nicknamed the Marsh Dragon; the town was finally conquered by Frederik Hendrik of Orange in 1629 in a Dutch stratagem: he diverted the rivers Dommel and Aa, created a polder by constructing a forty-kilometre dyke and pumped out the water by mills. After a siege of three months, the city had to surrender—an enormous blow to Habsburg geo-political strategy during the Thirty Years' War; this surrender cut the town off from the rest of the duchy and the area was treated by the Republic as an occupation zone without political liberties. After the Peace of Westphalia, the fortifications were again expanded. In 1672, the Dutch rampjaar, the city held against the army of Louis XIV of France. In 1794, French revolutionary troops under command of Charles Pichegru took the city with hardly a fight: in the Batavian Republic, both Catholics and Brabanders at last gained equal rights.
From 1806, the city became part of the Kingdom of Holland and from 1810, it was incorporated into the First French Empire. It was captured by the Prussians in 1814; the next year, 1815, when the United Kingdom of the Netherlands was established, it became the capital of North Brabant. Many newer and more modern fortresses were created in the vicinity of the city. A new canal was built, the'Zuid-Willemsvaart', which gave the city an economic impulse. Trade and industry grew; until 1878, it was forbidden to build outside the ramparts. That led to the highest infant mortality in the kingdom. At the end of the 19th century, the conservative city government prevented industrial investment to avoid an increase in the number of workers and the establishment of educational institutions: students were regarded as disorderly; as a result, the relative importance of the city diminished. One of the few official Nazi concentration camp complexes in Western Europe outside Germany and Austria was named after's-Hertogenbosch.
It was known to the Germans as Herzogenbusch. About 30,000 inmates were interned in the complex during this time. In the Netherlands, this camp is known as'Kamp Vught', because the concentration camp was located at a heath near Vught, a village a few kilometres south of's-Hertogenbosch. Conquered by the Germans in World War II in 1940, with its railway station bombed by planes of the Royal Air Force on 16 September 1944, it was liberated in 24–27 October 1944 by British soldiers of Major-General Robert Knox Ross's 53rd Infantry Division after Major Donald Bremner of the 1st Battalion, East Lancashire Regiment, of 158th Infantry Brigade, had routed the enemy on 23/24th; the population centres in the municipality are: Bokhoven, Deuteren, Empel, Gewande,'s-Hertogenbosch, Kruisstraat, Maliska
Gorinchem called Gorkum, is a city and municipality in the western Netherlands, in the province of South Holland. The municipality covers an area of 21.93 km2 of which 3.01 km2 is water. It had a population of 36,233 in 2017; the municipality of Gorinchem includes the population centre of Dalem. It is assumed that Gorinchem was founded circa 1000 CE by fishermen and farmers on the raised land near the mouth of the river Linge at the Merwede. "Goriks Heem" is first mentioned in a document from 1224 in which Floris IV granted people from Gorinchem exemption of toll payments throughout Holland. Somewhere between 1247 and 1267, Gorinchem became property of the Lords of Arkel. At the end of the 13th century earthen mounts reinforced with palisades were built around the settlement to protect it from domination by the neighboring counties of Holland and Gelre. Half a century real city walls were built complete with 7 gates and 23 watchtowers. Otto van Arkel granted it city rights on 11 November 1322. Jan van Arkel had a dispute with Albert I, brother of Willem V of Holland, leading to war and subsequently to the annexation of Gorinchem to Holland in 1417.
This resulted in increased trade and Gorinchem grew to be the eighth city of Holland. On 9 July 1572, the Watergeuzen captured 19 Catholic priests and monks; because they refused to renounce their faith, these priests and monks were brought to Brielle where they were hanged and were from on known among Catholics as the Martyrs of Gorkum. By the 16th century, the city walls were so deteriorated that they were replaced with new fortifications and eleven bastions that still are completely intact; the new walls were completed in 1609 and were located further from the town centre, making the city twice as large. In 1673, Gorinchem became part of the old Dutch Water Line; the city walls had four city gates: the Arkel Gate in the north, the Dalem Gate in the east, the Water Gate in the south, the Kansel Gate in the west. Of these four gates, only the Dalem Gate remains; the others were removed in the 19th century to make way for vehicular traffic. A portion of the Water Gate was preserved in the gardens of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.
In the 18th century, the economy went into decline. After the French domination, the retreating French troops took station in the bastion fortress of Gorinchem. After a three-month siege they capitulated but the city was damaged. During the Industrial Revolution, Gorinchem recovered. Increased shipping led to a railway connection to the city, its population increased, filling the innercity, new neighbourhoods had to be built outside the city walls. At the beginning of the 20th century, expansion took place in the West neighbourhoods. After World War II, expansion started in the north-western portion of the municipality, completed in the 1970s; this was followed by developments of the neighbourhoods Wijdschild and Laag Dalem east of the city center. In 1986, the town Dalem was added to the municipality; the city is crossed by two motorways. The city has a railway station: Gorinchem. Henry of Gorkum, theologian The Martyrs of Gorkum, hanged 1572. Willem Hessels van Est, theologian Abraham Bloemaert, painter Gerard Boate Gerrard de Boot and author of The Natural History of Ireland and his brother Arnold Boate and Hebrew scholar Jan van der Heyden and inventor Hendrik Hamel and writer Aert van der Neer, painter Hendrik Verschuring, painter Dirk Rafelsz Camphuysen, poet, painter Nikos Vertis, Greek singer Dinand Woesthoff, musician Ruud Brood, football coach Marco van Hoogdalem, football player Hugo de Groot, philosopher, Christian apologist and poet Henk Norel, basketball player Ida Gerhardt, poet Pierre van Paassen, writer Willem Adriaan de Graaf, mathematician Sint Niklaas, Belgium Lucca, Italy Kangjin, South Korea Official website "Gorinchem".
Encyclopædia Britannica. 1911
Geuzen was a name assumed by the confederacy of Calvinist Dutch nobles, who from 1566 opposed Spanish rule in the Netherlands. The most successful group of them operated at sea, so were called Watergeuzen. In the Eighty Years' War, the Capture of Brielle by the Watergeuzen in 1572 provided the first foothold on land for the rebels, who would conquer the northern Netherlands and establish an independent Dutch Republic, they can be considered either as privateers or pirates, depending on the circumstances or motivations. The leaders of the nobles who signed a solemn league known as the Compromise of Nobles, by which they bound themselves to assist in defending the rights and liberties of the Netherlands against the civil and religious despotism of Philip II of Spain were Louis of Nassau, Hendrick van Brederode. On 5 April 1566, permission was obtained for the confederates to present a petition of grievances, called the Request, to the regent, Duchess of Parma. About 250 nobles marched to the palace accompanied by Louis of Brederode.
The regent was at first alarmed at the appearance of so large a body, but one of her councillors, Berlaymont remarked "N'ayez pas peur Madame, ce ne sont que des gueux". The appellation was not forgotten. In a speech at a great feast held by some 300 confederates at the Hotel Culemburg three days Brederode declared that if need be they were all ready to become beggars in their country's cause. Henceforward the name became a party title; the patriot party adopted the emblems of beggary, the wallet and the bowl, as trinkets to be worn on their hats or their girdles, a medal was struck having on one side the head of Philip II, on the other two clasped hands with the motto Fidèle au roy, jusqu'à porter la besace. The original league of Beggars was short-lived, crushed by Alva, but its principles survived and were to be triumphant. In the Dutch language the word geuzennaam is used for linguistic reappropriation: a pejorative term used with pride by the people called that way. In 1569 William of Orange, who had now placed himself at the head of the party of revolt, granted letters of marque to a number of vessels manned by crews of desperadoes drawn from all nationalities.
Eighteen ships received letters of marque, which were equipped by Louis of Nassau in the French Huguenot port of La Rochelle, which they continued to use as a base. By the end of 1569 84 Sea Beggars ships were in action; the sea beggars were powerful military units. These fierce privateers under the command of a succession of daring and reckless leaders, the best-known of whom is William de la Marck, Lord of Lumey, were called "Sea Beggars", "Gueux de mer" in French, or "Watergeuzen" in Dutch. At first they were content to plunder both by sea and land, carrying their booty to the English ports where they were able to refit and replenish their stores. However, in 1572, Queen Elizabeth I of England abruptly refused to admit the Sea Beggars to her harbours. No longer having refuge, the Sea Beggars, under the command of Willem Bloys van Treslong, made a desperate attack upon Brielle, which they seized by surprise in the absence of the Spanish garrison on 1 April 1572. Encouraged by this success, they now sailed to Vlissingen, taken by a coup de main.
The capture of these two towns prompted several nearby towns to declare for revolt, starting a chain reaction that resulted in the majority of Holland joining in a general revolt of the Netherlands, is regarded as the real beginning of Dutch independence. In 1573 the Sea Beggars defeated a Spanish squadron under the command of Admiral Bossu off the port of Hoorn in the Battle on the Zuiderzee. Mixing with the native population, they sparked rebellions against Duke of Alba in town after town and spread the resistance southward; some of the forefathers of the Dutch naval heroes began their naval careers as Sea Beggars, such as Evert Heindricxzen, the grandfather of Cornelis Evertsen the Elder. As part of a propaganda campaign including prints and much else, many Geuzen medals were created as badges of affiliation, using a wide range of symbolism, including that associated with the Ottoman Empire. William I of Orange sought Ottoman assistance against the Spanish king Philip II; the "Geuzen" were expressing their anti-Catholic sentiments.
They considered the Turks to be less threatening than the Spaniards. During the years between 1579 and 1582, representatives from Grand Vizier Sokollu Mehmed Paşa travelled several times from Istanbul to Antwerp. There were, in fact, objective grounds for such an alliance. At the same time that the Dutch rebels were conducting their raids on Spanish shipping, the Ottoman Empire was involved in its own naval war with Spain, culminating in the 1571 Battle of Lepanto. Facing Spain with a coordinated double-pronged naval challenge, by the Ottomans in the Mediterranean and the Dutch in north European waters, would be to the advantage of both of Spain's foes; the slogan Liever Turks dan Paaps seems to have been rhetorical, their beggars medals in the form of a half moon were meant symbolically. The Dutch hardly contemplated life under the Sultan. Moreover, there was no direct contact between the Turkish authorities; the Turks were considered infidels, the heresy of Islam alone disqualified them from assuming a more central role in the rebels' propaganda.
The Geuzen are featured prominently in Dutch and Flemish popular novels, such as Charles