14th (1929) edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica-let’s start with the “Aa”s

Now to skim the surface of the first Volume 1 of Volume 14 (1929) of the Encyclopedia Britannica. What and who do we find here? I will paraphrase the actual narrative.

Francis Van Aarssens (1572-1641)-Dutch Diplomat and Statesman. Johan van Oldenbarneveldt  sent him as an envoy to France at the age of 26 and in 1606 he helped negotiate the 12 years truce. He was then recalled to be one of the judges of the “packed” court who condemned Oldenbarneveldt to death.  For his part in this judicial murder, a deep stain rests on the memory of Aarssens.

I googled Aarssens to see if his memory has been rehabilitated. Well it appears that the narrative in Wikipedia is very similar to the article in the Encyclopedia Britannica. I did find out what the “12 Years Truce” was from Wikipedia:

“The Twelve Years’ Truce was the name given to the cessation of hostilities between the Habsburg rulers of Spain and the Southern Netherlands and the Dutch Republic as agreed in Antwerp on 9 April 1609. It was a watershed in the Eighty Years’ War, marking the point from which the independence of the United Provinces received formal recognition by outside powers.”

Okay, sounds like a critical juncture in the history of Netherlands, and apparently a turning point of the Eightly Years War. Eighty Years is a long time, what was that all about?, Wikipedia again:

“The Eighty Years’ War, or Dutch War of Independence (1568–1648),[1] began as a revolt of the Seventeen Provinces against Philip II of Spain, the sovereign of the Habsburg Netherlands.

After the initial stages, Philip II deployed his armies and regained control over most of the rebelling provinces. However, under the leadership of the exiled William of Orange, the northern provinces continued their resistance and managed to oust the Habsburg armies and, in 1581, established the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands. The war continued in other areas, although the heartland of the republic was no longer threatened. The war ended in 1648 with the Peace of Münster, when the Dutch Republic was recognized as an independent country.”

So what did we learn?

Thee Dutch War of Independence was the Eighty Year War and the 12 Year Truce was mediated by Aarssens who put his benefactor to death. All because Aarssens name begins with two “a”s!!

Stay tuned for more episodes of EB XIV!!


About Don Segal

See Commentary, Photos, Drawings and Poetry on my blog at donsegal.wordpress.com.
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