MILITARY ASPECTS OF THE REVOLT
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MILITARY ASPECTS OF THE REVOLT book
The revolt of the Netherlands lasted from the iconoclastic fury in August 1566 to the Peace of Munster in January 1648. It lasted longer than any other uprising in modern European history and involved more continuous fighting than any war of modern times — from April 1572 to April 1607 (with a six months’ cease-fire in 1577), and from April 1621 to June 1647. Given the fact that the two combatants were far from equal and that, especially in the first years, the areas in revolt were small in size and population, and lacked sufficient natural resources to sustain a long war against the might of Spain, it seems remarkable that the Spaniards were unable to suppress the revolt at the outset. Parker thinks there are important logistical reasons for Spain’s failure to win an early victory — the determination of the defenders and their strength by sea; the defensibility of the north-western provinces; and the diversion of Spanish resources to other theatres of operation at crucial times (81, p. 50).