The name HOLLAND
For many people from abroad Holland is just another name for
the country that is officially known as the Netherlands.
Originally Holland was one of seven small countries that freed
themselves from Spanish domination during a 80-year long struggle
that ended in 1648.
Only in the beginning of the 19th century after the Napoleonic occupation
the Netherlands became officially one country.
The fact that the name Holland is often used for the country as a whole
derives from its dominant position during the birth of the country
in the 16th and 17th century.
In previous centuries Holland was only a large remote swamp.
Then the richer cities were further to the East; often they were members of
the Hansa confederation, together with many cities in Northern Germany
and on the Baltic Sea.
With the drainage of the swamp and with the continuous growth of sea going vessels
the position of Holland improved, and the position of the inland cities along
the shallower rivers dwindled.
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