The Rise of Great Powers | Episode 4: Tiny Holland, Giant Empire | Free Documentary History

Episode four recounts the rise of the Netherlands from its humble beginnings in the 16th century as a country the size of Michigan’s Upper Peninusla to its belle epoque in the 17th century. In 1492, Spain banished its entire Jewish population, beginning their exodus through Portugal which culminated in their settling in the Netherlands. When the Dutch declared independence from Spain, freedom of religion became its national creed. Among those who left Spain were talented merchants who exacted their revenge by engineering the Netherlands’ rise as the hegemon of European commerce, bringing Spain to its knees.

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