Going Dutch: How England Plundered Holland's Glory

Lisa Jardine, Author . Harper $35 (406p) ISBN 978-0-06-077408-0

England's almost bloodless “Glorious Revolution” of 1688, in which the Dutch king William of Orange overthrew James II, began as a hostile takeover but rapidly turned into a friendly merger, according to British historian Jardine (The Awful End of Prince William the Silent ). She explores the fascinating Anglo-Dutch relationship to answer how and why two sworn foes became friends so seamlessly. Jardine focuses mainly on the “subterranean” intellectual, cultural and scientific intersections between the two countries and finds that contacts were “continuous and mutually advantageous” for decades before William's invasion. Cross-border fertilization resulted in two of the greatest painters of the age—Peter Paul Rubens and Anton van Dyck—working for English patrons while esteemed members of the Royal Society (such as Isaac Newton) corresponded with their Netherlandish counterparts (such as Christian Huygens). By looking so closely at elite opinion, however, Jardine too lightly dismisses the virility of “petty nationalism” lower down the scale and too easily glosses over the very real military tensions between the two powers. Nevertheless, this is a highly original work that will appeal to fans of Simon Schama's groundbreaking The Embarrassment of Riches. Color and b&w illus. (Sept.)

Reviewed on: 08/04/2008
Release date: 09/01/2008
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 406 pages - 978-0-00-719734-7
Ebook - 432 pages - 978-0-06-204338-2
Hardcover - 406 pages - 978-0-00-719732-3
Paperback - 432 pages - 978-0-06-077409-7
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