THE TWELVE YEARS’ TRUCE, 1609-1621
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It soon became clear to Spanish merchants that the terms of the Twelve Years’ Truce would have disastrous consequences for Spain [docs 19, 20]. All obstacles to Dutch trade with Portugal and Spain had been removed; the blockade of the River Scheldt continued, to the detriment of Antwerp but to the advantage of Amsterdam; the Dutch came to dominate the north-south carrying trade, even penetrating regions in Spain (Valencia, Catalonia, Andalusia, Galicia and Portugal); the Dutch also increased their share of the Baltic trade to such an extent that by the 1620s their vessels accounted for two-thirds of all shipping entering the Danish Sound. Even more disturbing, from Spain’s point of view, was the fact that the new Republic also expanded its operations in the East and West Indies, and their reputation as enemies of Spain also helped the Dutch to gain concessions from the Venetians and the Turks.