Timeline and History Overview
- 2000 to 800 - Bronze Age peoples live in the Netherlands region.
- 800 to 58 - Iron Age period in which the Germanic tribes and the Celtic peoples arrived.
- 57 - The Roman Empire under Julius Caesar invades the southern Netherlands and takes control.
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- 1 to 100 - A tribe called the Frisians have settled much of the area.
- 400 - The Romans are overthrown by Germanic tribes. Peoples such as the Saxons, Franks, Angles, and Jutes settle the land.
- 768 - Charlemagne becomes King of the Franks. His empire expands to include the Netherlands.
- 800 to 1000 - The Vikings arrive raiding towns and cities along the coast. They settle in some areas.
- 1083 - The name Holland first appears in a legal document describing a region that would later become known as the County of Holland.
- 1384 to 1482 - The Burgundian Period when most of the Netherlands was united under the rule of the Duke of Burgundy.
- 1482 to 1567 - The Habsburg Period when the region was ruled by the Habsburg Empire.
- 1509 - Dutch philosopher Erasmus writes The Praise of Folly.
- 1568 - The start of the Eighty Years' War when the Dutch, led by William I the Prince of Orange, revolted against the Habsburg Empire which was ruled by King Philip II of Spain.
- 1581 - The Dutch declare their independence from Spain and the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands is established.
- 1602 - The Dutch East India Company is formed.
- 1642 - Dutch artist Rembrandt van Rijn paints his most famous painting, The Night Watch.
- 1648 - The Eighty Years' War comes to an end with the Peace of Munster. The Dutch Republic is recognized by Spain as an independent country.
- 1652 - The Dutch go to war against the English.
- 1688 - King William of Orange and Queen Mary become rulers.
- 1795 - The French army invades and takes over. The Batavian Republic is declared.
- 1806 - French emperor, Napoleon, makes his brother, Louis, King of the Netherlands.
- 1813 - Napoleon and the French are defeated, the United Kingdom of the Netherlands is declared. It includes Belgium and has two capitals: Brussels and Amsterdam.
- 1830 - Belgium rebels and breaks away forming its own country.
- 1853 - Famous painter Vincent van Gogh is born.
- 1899 - The First Hague Peace Conference is held between many of the world powers in an effort to avoid war.
- 1914 - World War I begins. The Netherlands remains neutral.
- 1922 - Women gain the right to vote.
- 1939 - World War II begins. The Netherlands once again tries to remain neutral.
- 1940 - Germany invades and occupies the Netherlands.
- 1941 - Jewish people are rounded up and sent to concentration camps by Nazi police.
- 1944 - Anne Frank is caught by the Nazis and sent to Auschwitz concentration camp.
- 1945 - World War II comes to an end. The Netherlands joins the United Nations.
- 1948 - The International Court of Justice is established at The Hague.
- 1949 - The Netherlands joins NATO, no longer keeping its policy of neutrality.
- 1953 - The North Sea Flood kills over 1,800 people. The government starts construction on the Delta Works, a series of dams and levees, to prevent future flooding.
- 1975 - Independence is granted to the Dutch colony of Surinam.
- 1980 - Beatrix becomes queen when Queen Juliana abdicates her throne.
- 1995 - A great flood causes a state of emergency and hundreds of thousands of people are evacuated.
- 1997 - The Delta Works are completed.
- 2002 - The Euro replaces the Dutch guilder as the official currency.
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The people who live in the Netherlands are called the Dutch. The land was originally inhabited by Germanic tribes. A portion of the land became a Roman province that was conquered by Julius Caesar in the first century BC. Later, the land became part of the empire of the Franks, then the House of Burgundy, and eventually became part of the Habsburg Empire.
In the 16th Century the land came under Spanish Rule and the Dutch revolted. Their leader was Willem of Orange and in 1581 the Republic of the United Netherlands was formed.
In later years, Dutch power declined. Wars with Spain, France, and England weakened the country.
In the 1900s, the Netherlands tried to stay neutral during both World Wars. They managed to avoid getting involved in the First World War, but in World War II they were occupied by Germany. The Dutch Jews were almost wiped out by the Germans. Over 75 percent of the 140,000 Jewish people that lived in the Netherlands were killed by the Germans as part of the Holocaust. Famous Jewish girl Anne Frank wrote of hiding from the Nazis in Amsterdam before getting captured and taken to a concentration camp to die.
After World War II, most of the Netherland's remaining colonies were granted independence.
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History >> Geography >> Europe >> Netherlands