The Dutch Patriotic Revolution: Prussians, Patriots, Orangists, and Frogs

  • Kiri H. Powell


Often overshadowed, and sometimes forgotten, the Dutch Patriot Revolution in 1787 is seen by modern historians today as an influential and important step towards democracy in Europe. The United Dutch Provinces, a rare republic in eighteenth-century Europe, began a slow revolution in 1781 after a pamphlet was published and distributed – Aan het Volk van Nederlands (An Address to the People of the Netherlands) – which lit the (already built) fire of revolution. The revolution climaxed in 1787 after a 10-day siege of Amsterdam and the invasion of a 26,000-strong Prussian army. This paper examines how the attitudes and concerns of the Dutch people allowed the Address to mobilise the Republic into action. This work also surveys the major developments of the revolution during its six-year span with a focus on two specific issues identified in the Address – repeated alliances with England and a dysfunctional military. By examining a set of four contemporary prints, this paper attempts to determine whether or not the revolutionaries were successful in meeting the goals diagnosed in the Address.

How to Cite
Powell, Kiri H. 2024. “The Dutch Patriotic Revolution: Prussians, Patriots, Orangists, and Frogs”. the Ascendant Historian 3 (June), 94-103.