What Were the Causes of the Dutch Revolt? What was the “Demonstration Effect?”

Under the reign of Philip II, a revolt occurred in the low countries; this revolt is known today as the Dutch Revolt, which went on from 1566-1648. But what were the causes of this revolt? Lastly, what was the “demonstration effect?”

The Dutch revolt was mainly caused by the religious persecution enforced by Philip II towards the Protestants in the low countries. Philip II was a ruler who was not at all tolerant to Protestants. This persecution got to a point that even Catholics in that region had enough also. They believed that this persecution went too far. Thus this led to the Protestants and Catholics of this region to band together, to rebel against Philip. This revolt led to the freedom of seven of these territories, which in turn became the Dutch Republic.

The “demonstration effect,” on the other hand, refers to what people saw in other countries, and applied what they saw in those countries. This really refers to the Dutch Republic, which became a place of prosperity with religious freedom, private property rights, etc. Other countries saw the success of the Dutch Republic, and tried to replicate it. 

In short, the Dutch Revolt was caused by the religious persecutions toward the Protestants by Philip II. This revolt’s main outcome was the freedom and creation of the Dutch Republic, which was a place of more freedoms compared to other regions at the time. Other countries tried to replicate this; this is known as the “demonstration effect.”

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