Spanish Netherlands, 1600-1713 Maria Theresia

The Austrian Netherlands, 1713-1789

A.) International Relations

The PEACE OF UTRECHT (1713) had Spain cede the hitherto Spanish southern Netherlands to Austria. In 1715 the so-called BARRIER TREATY was signed, in which Austria conceded to the Dutch Republic both the right to block the port of Antwerp (the SCHELDE BLOCKADE) and to lay Dutch garrisons in the barrier fortresses; the Dutch garrisons remained until 1781.
The Austrian Netherlands again were theatre of war in the WAR OF POLISH SUCCESSION (1733-1735).

B.) Economic Development

The Austrian administration pursued a MERCANTILIST policy intending to improve the economy. In 1722 an EAST INDIA COMPANY was established at OOSTENDE; Austrian diplomacy repeatedly attempted to have the Schelde blockade lifted. Here, unfortunately for the southern Netherlands, Habsburg dynasty interests outweighed those of the southern Netherlands; Austrian diplomacy had other priorities, never achieved the lifting of the blockade, and in 1731 cancelled the charter of the Oostende East India Company in return for recognition of the PRAGMATIC SANCTION by Great Britain and the Dutch Republic.

C.) Society

The Austrian Netherlands was a federation of territories - BRABANT, FLANDERS, HAINAUT, NAMUR, LIMBURG, LUXEMBURG, each of which had its own tradition, laws, identity; two languages are spoken in the country.

The Austrian Netherlands, in : Article The Netherlands, from Catholic Encyclopedia, 1913 edition; scroll down
The Ostend Company (1722-1731), by Paulus Swaen a commercial site; offers historical documents; De Oostendse Compagnie, by Bob Schuyesmans
The Ancien Regime, from Life in Flanders in the 18th and 19th Centuries by Marcel Blanchaer
Vrijmetselarij (Freemasonry), from Geschiedenis van de occulte en mystieke broederschappen by Marcel Roggemans
History of the Duchy of Bouillon, from Heraldica
Geschiedenis van Brussel : De Oostenrijkers in Brussel (1700-1790), from Digitaal Brussel, in Dutch
Bruno Blonde, Ilja van Damme, Consumer and Retail "Revolutions", Perspectives from a Declining Urban Economy. Antwerp in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century, IEHC 2006
DOCUMENTS Map Southern Netherlands in the 18th century, from Museum voor Vaderlandse Geschiedenis / Mees, Historische Atlas 1865
Map featuring the Austrian Netherlands in 1792 (political), from Gardiner's Atlas of English History, 1892
Coins of the Austrian Netherlands, 1744-1797, from Coins of Austria, many images
Flag of the Austrian Netherlands (1781-1786), from FOTW
Map : Les sept Provinces Unies des Pays-Bas, ou la Hollande avec les Pays-Bas Autrichiens, from Bonne, Atlas Encyclopedique, 1787-1788, low resolution
List of coins minted for the Austrian Netherlands under Charles VI.
Inventory : Aziatische Compagnien in de Zuidelijke Nederlanden en de familie Proli, from Nederlandsch Economisch-Historisch Archief
Documents relatifs au duche de Bouillon, 1484-1825, from Heraldica, in French
REFERENCE H.P.H. Jansen, Kalendarium. Geschiedenis van de Lage Landen in Jaartallen (History of the Low Countries by Years), Utrecht : Prisma (1971) 4th edition 1979
Memo from Belgium. Documents illustrating the History of Belgium, Vol.1 : from prehistoric times to 1830, Brussels 1978 : docs 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 122, 123, 127, 128, 129, 131, 132, 134
Le Regime Autrichien (1713-1792), pp. 115-123 in : Atlas Culturel et Historique de Belgique, Brussels : Elsevier 1954
Ostend Company, Governors of Banquibazar and Cobelon, 1719-1744, from World Statesmen by Ben Cahoon

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted in 2000, last revised on June 18th 2008

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