Belgian Revolt (Revolution)

   After the defeat of Napoleon, the Congress of Vienna decided in 1814 that the former Austrian or Southern Netherlands (occupied by French revolutionary armies in 1795) would be attached to the new Kingdom of the Netherlands as a barrier against French expansionism. King William I tried in vain to integrate his new subjects into a new polit ical and sociocultural entity. The contrast between North and South remained, however, for example, between Protestant merchants and Roman Catholic industrialists. In 1830, the year of the revolutions, clericalists and liberals united against William’s autocratic govern ment. The rebellion in Brusselsreceived support in other parts of the French- and Flemish-speaking country. Leopold of Saxe-Coburg (1790–1865) was proclaimed king of the Belgians. Military actions against the insurgents (1830–1831) were unsuccessful owing to a lack of international support (especially from France and Great Britain) for the Dutch king. Although William had to accept the sta tus quo, he did not formally accept the independence of a Belgian kingdom until the 1839 Treaty of London.

Historical Dictionary of the Netherlands. . 2012.

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