Kingdom of England
In the early 11th century the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms, united by Æthelstan, became part of the North Sea Empire of Cnut the Great, a personal union between England and Norway. The completion of the conquest of Wales by Edward I in 1284 put Wales under the control of the English crown, from the accession of James I in 1603, the Stuart dynasty ruled England in personal union with Scotland and Ireland. Under the Stuarts, the kingdom plunged into war, which culminated in the execution of Charles I in 1649. The monarchy returned in 1660, but the Civil War had established the precedent that an English monarch cannot govern without the consent of Parliament and this concept became legally established as part of the Glorious Revolution of 1688. From this time the kingdom of England, as well as its state the United Kingdom. On 1 May 1707, under the terms of the Acts of Union 1707, the Anglo-Saxons referred to themselves as the Engle or the Angelcynn, originally names of the Angles. They called their land Engla land, meaning land of the English, by Æthelweard Latinized Anglia, from an original Anglia vetus, the name Engla land became England by haplology during the Middle English period.
The Latin name was Anglia or Anglorum terra, the Old French, by the 14th century, England was used in reference to the entire island of Great Britain. The standard title for all monarchs from Æthelstan until the time of King John was Rex Anglorum, Canute the Great, a Dane, was the first king to call himself King of England. In the Norman period Rex Anglorum remained standard, with use of Rex Anglie. The Empress Matilda styled herself Domina Anglorum, from the time of King John onwards all other titles were eschewed in favour of Rex or Regina Anglie. In 1604 James VI and I, who had inherited the English throne the previous year, the English and Scottish parliaments, did not recognise this title until the Acts of Union of 1707. The kingdom of England emerged from the unification of the early medieval Anglo-Saxon kingdoms known as the Heptarchy, East Anglia, Northumbria, Essex, Sussex. The Viking invasions of the 9th century upset the balance of power between the English kingdoms, and native Anglo-Saxon life in general, the English lands were unified in the 10th century in a reconquest completed by King Æthelstan in 927 CE.
During the Heptarchy, the most powerful king among the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms might become acknowledged as Bretwalda, the decline of Mercia allowed Wessex to become more powerful. It absorbed the kingdoms of Kent and Sussex in 825, the kings of Wessex became increasingly dominant over the other kingdoms of England during the 9th century. In 827, Northumbria submitted to Egbert of Wessex at Dore, in 886, Alfred the Great retook London, which he apparently regarded as a turning point in his reign. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle says that all of the English people not subject to the Danes submitted themselves to King Alfred, asser added that Alfred, king of the Anglo-Saxons, restored the city of London splendidly
Siege of Haarlem
The siege of Haarlem was an episode of the Eighty Years War. From 11 December 1572 to 13 July 1573 an army of Philip II of Spain laid bloody siege to the city of Haarlem in the Netherlands, after the naval battle of Haarlemmermeer and the defeat of a land relief force, the starving city surrendered and the garrison was massacred. The resistance nonetheless was taken as an example by the Orangists at the sieges of Alkmaar. The city of Haarlem initially held a view in the religious war that was going on in the Netherlands. It managed to escape from the Reformed iconoclasm in 1566 that affected other cities in the Netherlands, when the city of Brielle was conquered by the Geuzen revolutionary army on 1 April, Haarlem did not initially support the Geuzen. The ruler of Spain was not pleased, and sent an army north under command of Don Fadrique, on 17 November 1572 all citizens of the city of Zutphen were murdered by the Spanish army, and on 1 December the city of Naarden suffered the same fate. The city administration of Haarlem sent a deputation of 4 people to Amsterdam to attempt to negotiate with Don Fadrique, the cities defenses were commanded by city-governor Wigbolt Ripperda, a commander put in charge by William the Silent, the Prince of Orange.
He strongly disapproved of negotiating with the Spanish army, called the city guard together, the citys administration was replaced with pro-Orange citizens. When the deputation came back from Amsterdam, they were convicted as traitors, the Sint-Bavokerk was cleared of Roman Catholic symbols the same day. On 11 December 1572 the Spanish army laid siege to Haarlem, the city was not very strong, militarily speaking. Although the city was surrounded by walls, they were not in good shape. The area around the city could not be inundated, and offered the enemy many places to set up camp, the existence of the Haarlemmermeer nearby made it difficult for the enemy to cut off the transportation of food into the city completely. In the Middle Ages it was unusual to fight in the winter, during the first two months of the siege, the situation was in balance. The Spanish army dug two tunnels to reach the city walls and collapse them, the defenders made tunnels to blow up the Spanish tunnels. The situation became worse for Haarlem on 29 March 1573, the Amsterdam army, faithful to the Spanish king, occupied the Haarlemmermeer and effectively blocked Haarlem from the outside world.
The hunger in the city grew, and the situation became so tense that on 27 May many prisoners were taken from the prison, on 19 December no less than 625 shots were fired at the defensive wall between the Janspoort to the Catherijnebridge. This forced the defenders to put up a new wall. Two city gates, the Kruispoort and the Janspoort collapsed from the fighting, kenau Simonsdochter Hasselaer, a very strong woman, helped defending the city
Sack of Antwerp
The Sack of Antwerp, often known as the Spanish Fury at Antwerp, was an episode of the Eighty Years War. The savagery of the led the provinces of the Low Countries to unite against the Spanish crown. The devastation caused Antwerps decline as the city in the region. The principal cause of the sack was the delay in payment due to the soldiers by Philip II and it was common procedure with the soldiery at that time, and their procedure was invariable. Without breaking their celebrated discipline, they would choose a new leader, or Eletto, from their number, in this instance the Spanish soldiers decided to find for themselves their belated pay, by looting Antwerp. The idea to sack Antwerp came from the Spanish commander of the Citadel of Antwerp and he tried to convince the commander of the German troops in the city, Count Otto IV van Eberstein, son of William IV of Eberstein, to deliver the city to the Spanish. But Eberstein warned Governor Compagny of Antwerp, and together they improvised defenses against the Spanish, on 3 November, Governor Compagny let a force of 6,000 Walloon troops under the Marquis of Havré into the city.
This was a risk, because these troops were not very trustworthy, some 10,000 civilians helped to raise improvised defenses against the Citadel. DAvila had prepared his attack and contacted other Spanish mutinous troops in Aalst, Lier and Maastricht, on November 4 at 11,00, the Spanish attacked. The civilian defenses were useless against the battle-hardened Spaniards, who swarmed into the city, as had been feared, the Walloons did not fight, but fled, or even participated in the looting. The Germans and civilians tried to resist, but were no match for the Spaniards, Eberstein drowned in the Schelde when he tried to escape. Some 7,000 lives and a deal of property were lost. The cruelty and destruction of three days of pillage became known as the Spanish Fury. This shocking event stiffened many in the Netherlands, even many Catholics, against the Spanish Habsburg monarchy and this effectively destroyed every accomplishment the Spanish had made in the past 10 years, since the start of the Dutch Revolt.
Furthermore, it brought about the ruin of the Antwerp Cloth Market, English traders, not wishing to risk visiting a town that now resembled a war zone, sought out new commercial links. By 1582, all English trade to Antwerp had ceased, the sack led to Antwerps decline from the economic and cultural center of the Netherlands and paved the way for Amsterdams rise. This event added to Spains Black Legend, list of massacres in Belgium French Fury Sack of Rome, the unpaid Imperial troops loot Rome. Spanish Fury was the nickname of the Spanish football team in the 20th century, the Baldwin Project University of Leiden
By population, Spain is the sixth largest in Europe and the fifth in the European Union. Spains capital and largest city is Madrid, other urban areas include Barcelona, Seville, Bilbao. Modern humans first arrived in the Iberian Peninsula around 35,000 years ago, in the Middle Ages, the area was conquered by Germanic tribes and by the Moors. Spain is a democracy organised in the form of a government under a constitutional monarchy. It is a power and a major developed country with the worlds fourteenth largest economy by nominal GDP. Jesús Luis Cunchillos argues that the root of the span is the Phoenician word spy. Therefore, i-spn-ya would mean the land where metals are forged, two 15th-century Spanish Jewish scholars, Don Isaac Abravanel and Solomon ibn Verga, gave an explanation now considered folkloric. Both men wrote in two different published works that the first Jews to reach Spain were brought by ship by Phiros who was confederate with the king of Babylon when he laid siege to Jerusalem.
This man was a Grecian by birth, but who had given a kingdom in Spain. He became related by marriage to Espan, the nephew of king Heracles, Heracles renounced his throne in preference for his native Greece, leaving his kingdom to his nephew, from whom the country of España took its name. Based upon their testimonies, this eponym would have already been in use in Spain by c.350 BCE, Iberia enters written records as a land populated largely by the Iberians and Celts. Early on its coastal areas were settled by Phoenicians who founded Western Europe´s most ancient cities Cadiz, Phoenician influence expanded as much of the Peninsula was eventually incorporated into the Carthaginian Empire, becoming a major theater of the Punic Wars against the expanding Roman Empire. After an arduous conquest, the peninsula came fully under Roman Rule, during the early Middle Ages it came under Germanic rule but later, much of it was conquered by Moorish invaders from North Africa. In a process took centuries, the small Christian kingdoms in the north gradually regained control of the peninsula.
The last Moorish kingdom fell in the same year Columbus reached the Americas, a global empire began which saw Spain become the strongest kingdom in Europe, the leading world power for a century and a half, and the largest overseas empire for three centuries. Continued wars and other problems led to a diminished status. The Napoleonic invasions of Spain led to chaos, triggering independence movements that tore apart most of the empire, eventually democracy was peacefully restored in the form of a parliamentary constitutional monarchy. Spain joined the European Union, experiencing a renaissance and steady economic growth
Thirty Years' War
The Thirty Years War was a series of wars in Central Europe between 1618 and 1648. It was one of the longest and most destructive conflicts in European history, as well as the deadliest European religious war, resulting in eight million casualties. Initially a war between various Protestant and Catholic states in the fragmented Holy Roman Empire, it developed into a more general conflict involving most of the great powers. These states employed relatively large mercenary armies, and the war became less about religion, in the 17th century, religious beliefs and practices were a much larger influence on an average European than they are today. The war began when the newly elected Holy Roman Emperor, Ferdinand II, tried to impose uniformity on his domains. The northern Protestant states, angered by the violation of their rights to choose that had granted in the Peace of Augsburg. Ferdinand II was a devout Roman Catholic and relatively intolerant when compared to his predecessor and his policies were considered strongly pro-Catholic.
They ousted the Habsburgs and elected Frederick V, Elector of the Rhenish Palatinate as their monarch, Frederick took the offer without the support of the union. The southern states, mainly Roman Catholic, were angered by this, led by Bavaria, these states formed the Catholic League to expel Frederick in support of the Emperor. The Empire soon crushed this rebellion in the Battle of White Mountain. After the atrocities committed in Bohemia, Saxony finally gave its support to the union, wishing to finally crush the Dutch rebels in the Netherlands and the Dutch Republic, intervened under the pretext of helping its dynastic Habsburg ally, Austria. No longer able to tolerate the encirclement of two major Habsburg powers on its borders, Catholic France entered the coalition on the side of the Protestants in order to counter the Habsburgs. Both mercenaries and soldiers in fighting armies traditionally looted or extorted tribute to get operating funds, the war bankrupted most of the combatant powers.
The Thirty Years War ended with the treaties of Osnabrück and Münster, the war altered the previous political order of European powers. Lutherans living in a prince-bishopric could continue to practice their faith, Lutherans could keep the territory they had taken from the Catholic Church since the Peace of Passau in 1552. Those prince-bishops who had converted to Lutheranism were required to give up their territories and this added a third major faith to the region, but its position was not recognized in any way by the Augsburg terms, to which only Catholicism and Lutheranism were parties. The Dutch revolted against Spanish domination during the 1560s, leading to a war of independence that led to a truce only in 1609. This dynastic concern overtook religious ones and led to Catholic Frances participation on the otherwise Protestant side of the war and Denmark-Norway were interested in gaining control over northern German states bordering the Baltic Sea
Siege of Lochem (1582)
The Siege of Lochem known as the Relief of Lochem was a siege that took place in the Dutch city of Lochem during the Eighty Years War and the Anglo–Spanish War. This marked the end of the Spanish siege of the city by the Spanish general Francisco Verdugo, in the summer of 1581 Francisco Verdugo had been sent by the Duke of Parma to replace the Count of Rennenberg after his defeat by Anglo Dutch forces under John Norreys at Kollum. Verdugo was able to defeat Norreys at Noordhorn his attempt to seize Niezijl was foiled by stout resistance and bad weather in the autumn of 1581. The following year Verdugo instead turned his attention to Lochem, a city in Guelderland, where Johann Baptista von Taxis had built a sconce around the walls of the town. Taxis joined forces with the Baron van Anholt, Lieutenant-colonel of former Rennenbergs regiment of foot, Verdugo had not given orders to start the siege and deemed it too risky because Lochem was easy to relief. Nevertheless, after Anholt brought to Groningen news of the siege, with Lochem taken Verdugo would have an easy chance to advance and take the cities of Zutphen and Deventer.
By July 22 Lochem was under siege by 4,000 Spanish troops and 400 cavalry, in Lochem itself after a month of siege they had managed to hold out but conditions inside the town were appalling. Starvation took hold and many citizens had resorted to eating their own horses, the weather had been poor and the countryside was flooded, hampering conditions for both besieged and besieger. Philip Hohenlohe had sent some Frisian companies on an offensive in the provinces, hoping to lure the Spanish commander Verdugo away from Lochem. Hohenlohe organised a relief force whilst in Deventer in late August and he gathered an army of 2,500 infantry and 1,500 cavalry which included fourteen companies of English and Scots troops under John Norreys. Hohenlohe had with him four pieces of artillery and was expected to join up with more forces on his way. On September 21,1582 they left Deventer and joined together with the army of William Louis, the size of the army grew to 5,000 soldiers and 2,500 cavalry including 1,800 newly arrived French Huguenot soldiers.
This force carried large quantities of food and supplies to meet the population of Lochem. On sighting the relief army from nearby Wildenborch castle the Spanish seeing they were outnumbered there decided to retreat, the allied force immediately occupied the castle, constructed a sconce and built a bridge over the moat. The rising waters of the small river Brekel caused by mills in Zutphen stopping the water meant that for Verdugo it was now impossible to prevent the city from being resupplied. In the night Hohenlohe gained access to the city and at once provided some food, evacuated the sick, Verdugo on the other hand managed to launch an assault, and in confused fighting managed to drive Hohenholes French troops from a sconce and destroyed them. The success for Verudgo however was only temporary, the morning the combined allied force mounted an attack on the besiegers. The assault was a success and many guns were captured, and his rearguard under the command of van Anholt suffered heavily protecting the Spanish retreat and lost five ensigns as a result, whilst van Anholt was severely injured
Siege of Eindhoven (1583)
After three months of siege, and the failed attempts by the States-General to assist Bonnivets forces, the defenders surrendered to the Spaniards on April 23. With the capture of Eindhoven, the Spanish forces made advances in the region. On September 29,1580, Duke of Anjou, supported by William of Orange, based on the terms of the treaty, Anjou assumed the title of Protector of the Liberty of the Netherlands and became sovereign of the United Provinces. On February 10,1582, after a courtship of Queen Elisabeth I in England, Anjou arrived to the Netherlands. On January 17,1583, the French forces led by Francis of Anjou tried to conquer the city of Antwerp by surprise, the inhabitants, still traumatised by the Spanish plunder seven years earlier, were determined to prevent another occupation by foreign troops by all means possible. Anjou was decisively defeated by the people of Antwerp, losing as many as 2,000 men, on February 7, the Spanish forces reached the gates of Eindhoven and laid siege to the fortress city.
The States-General urged the Duke of Anjou to assemble his army and march towards Eindhoven, Philip of Hohenlohe-Neuenstein from his base at Geertruidenberg, sent 4 squadrons of cavalry and 5 companies of infantry to reinforce Bonnivets forces. Although Biron was not very keen to accept, but the French statesman Pomponne de Bellièvre persuaded him to accept the charge. At the same time, Dutch troops stationed in Gelderland were ordered to advance through Utrecht towards Eindhoven and Scottish companies based in northern Flanders had orders to advance on Eindhoven, but these troops refused to move without their pay. Finally, on April 23, the States garrison was forced to surrender, with the conquest of Eindhoven, Parmas forces made great advances in the region, and gained the allegiance of the majority of the towns of northern Brabant. The Spanish victory increased the crisis between the Duke of Anjou and the States-General, Anjou laid the blame for the fall of Eindhoven to the States, while the States were fed up with his ambitions, and the inefficiency and slowness of his troops.
However, the Prince of Orange, strong supporter of the alliance, Biron moved his army to the north of Roosendaal, between Breda and Bergen op Zoom, where he intended lay siege to Wouw. On June 17, and after the capture of Diest by the Spaniards on May 27, the position of Anjou became impossible to hold with the States, and he eventually left the Netherlands in late June. His departure discredited William of Orange, his main supporter, the pace of the Spanish advance continued, and Dunkirk was the new target of the Prince of Parma. French Fury French Wars of Religion Treaty of Plessis-les-Tours List of Stadtholders of the Low Countries List of Governors of the Spanish Netherlands Black, spain, 1469–1714, A Society Of Conflict. The Origins and Development of the Dutch Revolt, the Founding of the Dutch Republic, War and Politics in Holland 1572–1588. ISBN 978-0-19-920911-8 García Hernán, Enrique. /Maffi, guerra y Sociedad en la Monarquía Hispánica. The Dutch Republic, Its Rise and Fall 1477–1806, the Duke of Anjou and the Politique Struggle During the Wars of Religion
Battle of Borgerhout
Taking advantage of the Dutch rebel armys indiscipline, Farnese decided at the beginning of 1579 to besiege Maastricht. The assault was divided into three columns, each one provided with a bridge to pass over the camps moat. After one of the attacks, undertaken by Walloon troops, succeeded in securing a bridge, William of Orange, leader of the Dutch revolt, and archduke Matthias of Habsburg, Governor-General of the Netherlands appointed by the States General, witnessed the fight from Antwerps walls. The battle meant the destruction of the villages of Borgerhout and Deurne, Farnese proceeded to besiege Maastricht, which the Spanish Army invested less than a week after the battle and was taken by assault on 29 June of the same year. Farneses successful campaign opened the way to a period of Spanish reconquest of much of the Netherlands. Orange invaded the Netherlands twice, in 1568 and 1572, the second time, the revolt spread into the provinces of Holland and Zealand, and Alba was unable of quelling it.
In reaction, the loyal and rebel provinces united to expel the foreign troops under the Pacification of Ghent, johns striking victory at the Battle of Gembloux in January 1578, was followed by a tactical defeat at Rijmenam in July, and John himself died of plague in October. The States General called for help Francis, Duke of Anjou and heir of the King of France, who entered Mons in July 1578, the Catholic provinces of Namur and Limburg were already controlled by the Spanish. The Union of Arras opened talks in February with Alexander Farnese, in the south, Farnese was planning the capture of Maastricht to use the city with its stone bridge over the Meuse as a base to conquer Brussels and Antwerp in the following campaigns. In November 1578, the Spanish Army left Namur and crossed the Ardennes, Farnese deemed too risky starting the siege of Maastrich at midwinter and with the John Casimirs numerous cavalry on the countryside. For the 1579 campaign, Farnese planned two different movements, the first part of the plan was accomplished when Mondragón took the towns of Kerpen and Straelen between 7 and 15 January.
On 24 January, Farnese moved to attack the States General army, which was at Weert, east of Antwerp. They asked the city council to allow them to enter the city, but it was refused, in the meantime, Farnese entrusted to Count Hannibal dAltemps the capture of Weert and continued his advance upon the Dutch Army. DAltemps encircled Weert with 6,000 men and breached its walls with a two-cannon battery. The defenders of the castle surrendered at discretion but, on Farnese orders, were hanged on the windows, instead of following the Dutch Army to its quarters, lodged in Turnhout with his troops and his court to forage. Before moving to Antwerp he dealt with John Casimirs German Army, Spanish troops attacked and defeated part of the German reiters near Eindhoven on 10 February. Once this matter was finished, Farnese advanced upon Borgerhout, the Dutch States troops quartered in the village of Borgerhout numbered 25 or 40 infantry companies which comprised from 3,000 to 4,000 soldiers, plus 100 additional mounted troops.
They were the backbone of the army and William of Orange referred to them as his braves
The Surrender of Breda
La rendición de Breda is a painting by the Spanish Golden Age painter Diego Velázquez. It was completed during the years 1634–35, inspired by Velázquezs visit to Italy with Ambrogio Spinola and it is considered one of Velázquezs best works. Jan Morris has called it one of the most Spanish of all pictures, the capture of Breda in 1625 was one of the few major successes of Spanish arms in the latter stages of the Eighty Years War. The Spanish general, Genoese aristocrat Ambrogio Spinola, conquered Breda against the instructions of his superiors, the bulk of Spanish forces were diverted to the unfolding Thirty Years War. Breda, a city near the frontier of Holland proper had been occupied in 1567 by the Duke of Alba, ten years afterwards recovered by Holach, the town was the seat of the Orange family, who had a castle there. In 1624, the suspension of hostilities in Germany enabled the Spanish to concentrate their forces towards Breda, Spinola had made a military reputation for himself in 1604 and been rewarded with the Golden Fleece for conquering Ostend in Flanders.
Defending the Dutch, Maurice of Nassau led hostilities against Spinola and his successor, Frederick Henry, unsuccessfully attempted to revive Dutch momentum, but ultimately surrendered in May. The terms of defeat at Breda were some of the most honorable, Spinola died in the autumn of 1630, only a year after Velazquez had sailed with him on the voyage to Italy. In 1637 Breda was recaptured by Frederick Henry after a four-month siege, and in 1648 it was finally ceded to the Dutch Republic by the Treaty of Westphalia. Velázquez painted The Surrender of Breda as an emblem of Spanish nationalism and as a tribute to Ambrogio Spinola. ”Velázquez felt discouraged after Ambrogio Spinola’s death and sought to legitimize Spinola, whose success and bravery in the battle inspired Velázquez to paint The Surrender of Breda. The Surrender of Breda was one of twelve life-size battle scenes intended to perpetuate victories won by Philip IV’s armies that hung in the Salón de Reinos in Buen Retiro. It illustrates the exchange of keys that occurred three days after the capitulation between Spain and the Netherlands was signed on June 5,1625, the focus of the painting is not on the battle itself, but rather the reconciliation.
At the center of the painting and figuratively, is the key given to Spinola by Justin of Nassau. ”This battle painting is notable for its static and sentimental qualities. According to the statement made by eye-witnesses both had dismounted and Spinola awaited the arrival of Justin surrounded by a “crown” of princes and officers of high birth. The governor presented himself with his family and distinguished students of the military academy, Spinola greeted and embraced his vanquished opponent with a kindly expression and still more kindly words, in which praised the courage and endurance of the protracted defense. The extraordinary respect and dignity Spinola demonstrated towards the Dutch army is praised through The Surrender of Breda. Spinola “had forbidden his troops to jeer at, or otherwise abuse, the vanquished Dutch, according to a report, he himself saluted Justin. ”The painting demonstrates the glimpses of humanity that can be exposed as a result of war, and commends Spinola’s consideration for Nassau.
Velázquez’s relationship with Spinola makes The Surrender of Breda especially historically accurate, the depiction of Spinola is undoubtedly accurate, and Spinola’s memory of the battle contributed to the perspective with which Velázquez composed the painting
The southern provinces initially joined in the revolt, but submitted to Spain. The religious clash of cultures built up gradually but inexorably into outbursts of violence against the repression of the Habsburg Crown. These tensions led to the formation of the independent Dutch Republic, the first leader was William of Orange, followed by several of his descendants and relations. This revolt was one of the first successful secessions in Europe, and led to one of the first European republics of the modern era, King Philip was initially successful in suppressing the rebellion. In 1572, the rebels captured Brielle and the rebellion resurged, the northern provinces became independent, first in 1581 de facto, and in 1648 de jure. The Southern Netherlands remained under Spanish rule, the continuous heavy-handed rule by the Habsburgs in the south caused many of its financial and cultural elite to flee north, contributing to the success of the Dutch Republic. The Dutch imposed a blockade on the southern provinces which prevented Baltic grain relieving famine in the southern towns.
The first phase of the conflict can be considered to be the Dutch War of Independence, the focus of the latter phase was to gain official recognition of the already de facto independence of the United Provinces. This phase coincided with the rise of the Dutch Republic as a major power, in a series of marriages and conquests, a succession of Dukes of Burgundy expanded their original territory by adding to it a series of fiefdoms, including the Seventeen Provinces. Although Burgundy itself had been lost to France in 1477, the Burgundian Netherlands were still intact when Charles V was born in Ghent in 1500 and he was raised in the Netherlands and spoke fluent Dutch, French and some German. In 1506, he became lord of the Burgundian states, among which were the Netherlands, subsequently, in 1516, he inherited several titles, including the combined kingdoms of Aragon, and Castile and León which had become a worldwide empire with the Spanish colonization of the Americas. In 1519, he became ruler of the Habsburg empire, although Friesland and Guelders offered prolonged resistance, virtually all of the Netherlands had been incorporated into the Habsburg domains by the early 1540s.
Flanders had long been a wealthy region, and had been coveted by the French kings for a long time. The other Netherlands had grown into wealthy and entrepreneurial regions within the empire, Charles Vs empire became a worldwide empire with large American and European territories. The latter were, distributed throughout Europe and defense of these were hampered by the disparity of the territories and huge length of the empires borders. This large realm was almost continuously at war with its neighbors in its European heartlands, most notably against France in the Italian Wars, further wars were fought against Protestant princes in Germany. The Netherlands paid heavy taxes to fund these wars, but perceived them as unnecessary and sometimes downright harmful, during the 16th century, Protestantism rapidly gained ground in northern Europe. Dutch Protestants, after initial repression, were tolerated by local authorities, by the 1560s, the Protestant community had become a significant influence in the Netherlands, although it clearly formed a minority then