Can’t military and diplomatic historians all just get along?

It seems we are fated to be yin and yang. The descent into armed conflict, the domain of military historians, represents the palpable failure of diplomacy, the subject of study for diplomatic historians. Yet ultimately the futility of the military historian’s war-mongering forces an inevitable return to negotiation, and some sort of peace. The circle completes itself.

I guess we need each other after all.

For those wishing to take more of a walk on the diplomatic side, Brill has a new edited collection on diplomatic and legal history that might fit the bill:

Lesaffer, Randall, ed. The Twelve Years Truce (1609): Peace, Truce, War and Law in the Low Countries at the Turn of the 17th Century. Leiden: Brill Academic Publishers, 2014.

The Twelve Years Truce of 9 April 1609 made a temporary end to the hostilities between Spain and the Northern Netherlands that had lasted for over four decades. The Truce signified a crucial step in the recognition of the Republic of the Northern Netherlands as a sovereign power. As the direct source of inspiration for the 1648 Peace of Munster the Truce is a crucial text in the formation of the early modern law of nations. As few other texts, it reflects the radical changes to the laws of war and peace from around 1600.
The Twelve Years Truce offers a collection of essays by leading specialists on the diplomatic and legal history of the Antwerp Truce of 1609. The first part covers the negotiation process leading up to the Truce. The second part collects essays on the consequences of the Truce on the state of war. In the third part, the consequences of the Truce for the sovereignty of the Northern and Southern Netherlands as well as it wider significance for the changing laws of war and peace of the age are scrutinised.

Table of Contents:

Introduction … 1
Randall Lesaffer

Part 1 Truce and Peace

1 The Twelve Years Truce … 7
Paul Brood

2 Preparing the Ground … 15
Alicia Esteban Estríngana

3 The Act of Cession, the 1598 and 1600 States General in Brussels and the Peace Negotiations during the Dutch Revolt … 48
Bram de Ridder Violet Soen

4 The Anglo-Spanish Peace Treaty of 1604 … 69
Alain Wijffels

Part 2 Truce and War

5 Left ‘Holding the Bag’ … 89
Peter Borschberg

6 The Tactical Military Revolution and Dutch Army Operations during the Era of the Twelve Years Truce (1592–1618) … 121
Olaf van Nimwegen

7 ‘Une oppression insupportable au peuple’ … 152
Tim Piceu

Part 3 Truce and Law

8 The United Provinces … 181
Beatrix C.M. Jacobs

9 How ‘Sovereign’ were the Southern Netherlands under the Archdukes? … 196
Georges Martyn

10 The Early Doctrine of International Law as a Bridge from Antiquity to Modernity and Diplomatic Inviolability in 16th- and 17th-Century European Practice … 210
Carlo Focarelli

11 From Antwerp to Munster (1609/1648) … 233
Randall Lesaffer, Erik-Jan Broers and Johanna Waelkens

12 ‘La dernière ancre de leur finesse’ … 256
Bernd Klesmann

13 The Treaty of London, the Twelve Years Truce and Religious Toleration in Spain and the Netherlands (1598–1621) … 277
Werner Thomas


One response to “Can’t military and diplomatic historians all just get along?”

  1. Gene Hughson says :

    “The circle completes itself.

    I guess we need each other after all.”

    I think that’s what Carl von C. was getting at with his “…politics by other means” statement.

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