Spanish Netherlands

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Philip II (382—336 bc)

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The southern provinces of the Netherlands ceded to Philip II of Spain in the Union of Arras (1579), during the Dutch Revolts. These lands originally included modern Belgium, Luxembourg, part of northern France, and what later became part of the United Provinces of the Netherlands. Although Philip II still intended to re-subjugate the rebellious northern provinces, he granted the sovereignty of the Spanish Netherlands to his daughter Isabella and her husband the Archduke Albert (1598). During the Twelve-Year Truce (1609–21) and the unsuccessful war against the United Provinces (1621–48), the region enjoyed only nominal independence from Spain. A great deal of territory was lost to Louis XIV of France during the wars of the 17th century, including Artois and part of Flanders. On the expiry of the Spanish Habsburg dynasty in 1700, the region came under French rule until 1706, when it was occupied by the British and Dutch. By the Peace of Utrecht (1713) it passed under the sovereignty of the Austrian Habsburg Holy Roman Emperors.

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