for they ruined neither belligerent. Moreover, dynastie ties were very strong in those days. As early as the Middle Ages not less than five Counts of Holland had married Scotch and English Princesses x). But in the I7th and i8th centuries three Stadholders in succession, William II, William III, and William IV, foliowed their example.
In 1688 the Stadholder William III, whose aim in life was the furtherance of Protestantism, and the saving of Europe from the tiranny of Louis XIV, became King of England. This meant that the fate of Holland was linked to that of Great Britain. Some historians declare that William sacrificed Holland's interests to the common cause. But is is impossible to deny that during the reign of the three Stadholders, and especially during that of William III, Holland was very influential in the councils of Europe. Even in the time of William IV, when the Dutch Army and Navy had been allowed to fall into decay, Holland still retained her prominent position.
It is equally impossible to deny that Holland's greatness ended with the last Stadholder, William V, who, did not marry an English Princess, but a niece of Frederick the Great.
*) Floris I, about 1160 married Ada,daughter of the King of Scotland;
William I, „ 1215 „ Mary. „ „„ DukeolLancaster;
Johnl, „ 1295 „ Elisabeth „ „ „ King of England;
WilliamV „ 1320 „ Matilde „ „ „ Duke of Lancaster;
Charles the Bold+i 350 „ Margaret „ „ „Duke of York.