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date: 18 October 2019

Orange Nassau, House of familylocked

  • B. Brenninkmeyer-de Rooij
  •  and Martha Hamilton-Phillips


Dutch dynasty of rulers, collectors and patrons ( see fig. ). (1) William the Silent was the eldest son of the German Count William of Nassau-Dillenburg (1487–1559) and Juliana van Stolberg Wernigerode (1506–80). In 1544 he inherited properties in France and the Netherlands, including the principality of Orange, from his cousin René of Chalon (1519–44; see under Nassau, House of family ). At first he served as a provincial governor for the Habsburgs: in 1555 Philip II made him a member of the Council of State, and in 1559 he became Stadholder of Holland, Zeeland, Utrecht and Burgundy. In 1567, however, when the Duque de Alba entered Brussels to quell the revolt against Spanish rule, William resigned as Stadholder and returned to Germany. From then he was the main organizer of the Dutch Revolt against the Spaniards and lived in Holland from 1572 to 1584...

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