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Minutes of the States of Holland 1620-1640

Edited by J.W. Veenendaal-Barth and E.C.M. Huysman together with C.E. Keij, V.L. Vree and A.A. Smit.

Nicolaas Stellingwerff, Pensionary of Medemblik, and Sybrand Schot, Secretary of Purmerend, kept meticulous records of the discussions that took place within the States of Holland and West-Friesland where they had each been sent to represent the interests of their towns. They were instructed to make these notes by their respective patrons; the Mayor of Medemblik and the Mayor of Purmerend. As the minutes of States of Holland printed at the time only show the decisions that were made and fail to mention anything about the discussions that led up to them, these private minutes are a priceless source of information on the way in which decisions were reached within the States. The States were the highest administrative body of the province, therefore almost all subjects are addressed. These personal notes offer a clear insight into the relationships between the different voting towns and the rapport with the stadholder and the States-General.

Between 1987 and 2006 seven volumes were published in the massive RGP series. They contain a complete and unabridged reproduction of the notes of both representatives, and can be searched with the help of a reference system and an extensive index. These volumes are available online.
Transcripts of the later notes which concern the period dating from September 1636 up to and including November 1640 – the last year covered by the project, as decided in 1952 – can be accessed on this website. Out of the 26 sessions of the States of Holland which took place during these years, notes made by Stellingwerff and Schot still survive from 19 of them. With the exception of session A, the notes of one of the two pensionaries were made searchable using unedited transcripts. If the orderly notes of Stellingwerff, who was a better and more fastidious writer, were missing then the notes of Schot (sessions B and C) were reproduced. The guidelines for the publication of historical documents (5th edition; Utrecht-‘s-Gravenhage, 1975) were followed during the process of arranging the texts.