Nicolette Mout (*1945), Professor Emeritus of Modern History at Leiden University, has annotated the Plakkaat and translated it into modern Dutch. Her meticulous introduction describes the historical and political context in which the Act of Abjuration was created and proclaimed.
isbn 978 90 6554 0935
82 pages, with the original Declaration in facsimile
1500 copies sold
For more information, please contact Patrick Everard
"Mout’s style is meticulous and the book comes in a beautiful edition. Within a limited scope it gives a clear insight into the genesis of the Dutch nation." — Nederlands Dagblad
"The Act of Abjuration is among the most important state papers in Western history. In form as well as content, the Plakkaat furnishes a striking archetype for the American Declaration of Independence." — Stephen Lucas, Evjue-Bascom Professor in the Humanities, University of Wisconsin
"The Plakkaat van Verlatinge is the birth certificate of the Netherlands" — Willem-Alexander van Oranje, King of the Netherlands
Dutch Declaration of Independence
by the States General of the United Netherlands
On 26 July 1581, the States General of the rebellious Dutch provinces declared that Philips II, King of Spain, had forfeited the sovereignty and government of the Netherlands. This Act of Abjuration or ‘Declaration of Independence’ was a self-conscious call for independent government. The document has come to be regarded as the ‘birth certificate’ of the Republic of the United Netherlands and the political grounding of the Golden Age.
Its world-historical importance is in line with that of the American Declaration of Independence of 1776 and the droits of the French Revolution in 1789.
In a lucid introduction, Nicolette Mout provides insight into the political, historical and religious circumstances under which this fundamental historical document came into being. The Dutch Declaration of Independence is an indispensable work of reference for anyone interested in Dutch history, or the history of modern nation-states; and an unexpected icon in any contemporary exit-debate.