Manuel Herrero Sánchez

The Diplomatic Network of the Dutch Republic in the Spanish Court in the Second half of the Seventeenth century

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Diplomacy; Dutch Republic; Spanish Monarchy; Policentrism.

This article analyses the diplomatic practices carried out by the complex network of representatives of the United Provinces in the Spanish Court in Madrid between the Peace of Westfalia and the new conflict caused by the beginning of the War of the Spanish Succession in 1702. The aim is not to make a detailed study of the relationship between these two powers, but to examine the nature and operation of a diplomatic system which replicated the republic's complicated constitutional structure; in addition, this system operated in parallel to the diplomatic structure set up by Spain in the Dutch Republic, which, on its part, was also the reflection of the polycentric nature of the dominions under the Habsburg. The essential role played by the representative of the Catholic king before the State Generals in the development of the bi-lateral relations is crucial for the understanding of the selection criteria used for the appointment of the Dutch representatives in Madrid, and also of the communication channels set up by these representatives in the Spanish Court and the part played by reciprocity mechanisms in negotiations with the monarchy.

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