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Belgian History - Belgian Independence




Let us begin with the Belgian Revolution in 1830, where it all began. As you probably know, Belgium was a part of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands.



The Southern part, Wallonia, was (and still is) frenchspeaking, just as the higher classes in Flandres. This was due to the previous owners of the land (France). (=Conflict 1: Southern part french speaking, Nothern part dutch) The king, Willem I, was also a protestant (non-religious) whilst the Southern part of the Country was (very) Catholic. (=Conflict 2) This wasn't really a problem but when the government decided to make the Netherlands dutch speaking* (with a law (1 october 1814)) and to 'control' the Church (no new monasteries, influence in the election of bishops, negotiations with the pope), the Southern part of the country wasn't really happy.

[* This not only caused problems with the French speaking part of the Netherlands but also with the southern 'dutch' speaking part, because the official dutch language (a.k.a. the language spoken in the area around Amsterdam, Den Haag) wasn't the same as the local dutch dialect, spoken in the Southern part of the country.]

The revolt
After the opera, La muette de Portici, in Brussels people started screaming 'Vive la libertι'. The revolt had begun. Willem I sent an army of 12000 men to brussels. France on the other wanted 'to help' the Belgians because they thought that they could add Belgium, once seperated from The Netherlands, to France. The end of the revolt is well known, the separation of Belgium from Holland.

L'Union fait la force!


Adri



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