List of Dutch inventions and discoveries
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|History of the Netherlands|
Dutch-speaking people, in spite of their relatively small number, have a significant history of exploration, invention, innovation and discovery. The Netherlands and its people have made important contributions to the world's modern civilization in many fields of life such as arts, architecture, sciences, medicine, cartography, religion, philosophy (the 17th-century philosophy in particular), politics (international relations), law (international law / law of nations), economics (institutional and financial innovations in the Dutch Golden Age), agriculture (horticulture, gardening, animal husbandry) and technology, including water management engineering (drainage technology, land reclamation, flood control and canal building). In the age of Scientific Revolution, the revolutionary Dutch inventions like the advanced optical devices (microscope and telescope), high-accuracy timekeeping devices or timepieces (pendulum clock and spiral-hairspring watch), first navigable submarine, automatic temperature regulator (mercury-based thermostat), magic lantern, mercury thermometer and Leyden jar were those that changed the world of the early modern science and technology.
In the Age of Discovery, the Dutch, aided by their skills in shipbuilding, shipping, seamanship (navigation), map-making (cartography and uranography), drawing/painting, printing/publishing, food preservation/processing (gibbing and sugar refining), finance and trade, traveled to every corner of the world and left their language embedded in names of places they visited, many of which are still in use today. At one time, there was not an inhabited continent in the world that did not have a Dutch foothold on it or at least some tenuous connection to the Netherlands. Australia, for instance, the last inhabited continent to be discovered (authentically) in 1606, was never a Dutch possession, yet they were the first to map the coastline (indisputably) and this explains why so many surrounding areas, from Tasmania to New Zealand, have Dutch-origin names. In fact, before it acquired its present name, Australia was originally known as New Holland. During the 17th century, the Dutch navigators and explorers have charted almost two-thirds of the Australian coastline. The VOC's cartographers were able to map most of Australia's coastline except the east coast which still remained a mystery until it was discovered by James Cook in 1770. Dutch exploratory voyages such as those led by Willem Barentsz, Willem Janszoon, Henry Hudson, Abel Tasman and Jacob Roggeveen revealed vast new territories to Europeans. Also, the Dutch explorers and cartographers like Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser, Frederick de Houtman, Petrus Plancius and Jodocus Hondius were pioneers in first systematic charting/mapping of largely unknown southern-hemisphere heavens (far southern skies) in the late 16th century.
The Netherlands, despite its very small size and population, had a considerable part in making of the modern world. In the Early Modern period (Dutch Golden Age in particular), The Netherlands and its people made a significant impact on world history, including North America (New Netherland, Plymouth Colony, Thirteen Colonies, United States), Caribbean (Netherlands Antilles), South America (Brazil, Suriname), Sub-Saharan Africa (South Africa, Mauritius), Iberian Peninsula (Spanish Empire, Portuguese Empire), the British Isles (Great Britain, Ireland), Nordic countries (Denmark, Norway-Svalbard, Sweden), Slavic countries (Imperial Russia, Poland), Islamic countries (Ottoman Empire, Morocco), South Asia (India, Sri Lanka), Far East (Indonesia, Taiwan, Joseon Korea, Tokugawa Japan) and Oceania (Australia, New Zealand, Easter Island).
Often, things which are discovered for the first time, are also called "inventions", and in many cases, there is no clear line between the two. The following list is composed of objects, processes or techniques that were invented by or discovered by people from the Netherlands and Dutch-speaking people from the former Southern Netherlands. Until the fall of Antwerp, the Dutch and Flemish were generally seen as one people.
- 1 Inventions and Innovations
- 1.1 Arts and Architecture
- 1.1.1 Movements and Styles
- 1.1.2 Architecture
- 1.1.3 Furniture
- 1.1.4 Visual arts
- 220.127.116.11 1400s Modern oil painting
- 18.104.22.168 1400s–1600s Dutch realism / Netherlandish realism (arts)
- 22.214.171.124 1470s–1510s Pre-surrealism
- 126.96.36.199 1500s–1600s Modern still-life painting
- 188.8.131.52 1500s–1600s Modern landscape art
- 184.108.40.206 1500s Genre painting
- 220.127.116.11 1600s Modern marine painting
- 18.104.22.168 1600s Vanitas
- 22.214.171.124 1600s Civic group portraiture
- 126.96.36.199 1600s Tronie
- 188.8.131.52 1600s Rembrandt lighting
- 184.108.40.206 1650s Pronkstilleven
- 220.127.116.11 1880s Pre-expressionism
- 18.104.22.168 1920s–1960s MC Escher's graphic arts
- 22.214.171.124 1955 Miffy (Nijntje)
- 1.2 Agriculture
- 1.3 Biology
- 1.4 Cartography and geography
- 1.5 Chemicals and materials
- 1.6 Communication and multimedia
- 1.7 Computer science and information technology
- 1.8 Economics
- 1.8.1 1602 Public limited liability joint-stock company (first modern corporation / first company to issue stock)
- 1.8.2 1602 Modern multinational corporation (first modern company to go public / first public company)
- 1.8.3 1602 Megacorporation
- 1.8.4 1600s Dutch auction
- 1.8.5 1600s First large-scale foreign direct investment (before the Industrial Revolution)
- 1.8.6 1600s Modern capitalism (first modern economy)
- 1.8.7 1936 Dynamic macroeconomic model
- 1.8.8 1988 Fairtrade certification (Stichting Max Havelaar)
- 1.9 Finance
- 1.9.1 1602 First official stock exchange (first organized stock market)
- 1.9.2 1602 Initial public offering (IPO)
- 1.9.3 1609 Central bank
- 1.9.4 1609 Short selling
- 1.9.5 1661 First European banknote
- 1.9.6 1688 First stock trading handbook (Confusion of Confusions)
- 1.9.7 1600s First modern global financial centre (Amsterdam Entrepôt)
- 1.9.8 1600s Modern financial system
- 1.10 Foods and drink
- 1.11 Law and jurisprudence
- 1.12 Measurement
- 1.12.1 1656 Pendulum clock
- 1.12.2 1675 Spiral balance spring for watch (spiral-hairspring watch)
- 1.12.3 1714 Mercury thermometer with a standardised temperature scale (first modern thermometer)
- 1.12.4 1724 Fahrenheit temperature scale (first standard temperature scale)
- 1.12.5 1862 Snellen chart
- 1.12.6 1902 String galvanometer
- 1.12.7 1922 Schilt photometer
- 1.13 Medicine
- 1.14 Military
- 1.15 Musical instruments
- 1.16 Philosophy and Social Sciences
- 1.17 Religious movements
- 1.18 Scientific instruments
- 1.19 Sports and Games
- 1.20 Technology and Engineering
- 1.20.1 1373 First pound lock in Europe
- 1.20.2 1620s Automatic temperature regulator (thermostat)
- 1.20.3 1620s Feedback control system (automatic control)
- 1.20.4 1659 First practical image projector (magic lantern)
- 1.20.5 1673 Fire hose
- 1.20.6 1680 Gunpowder engine (forerunner to modern internal combustion engine)
- 1.20.7 1680s Hollander beater
- 1.20.8 1783 Gas lighting
- 1.20.9 1926 Pentode
- 1.20.10 1939 Philishave
- 1.20.11 1948 Gyrator
- 1.20.12 1958 Traffic enforcement camera
- 1.20.13 1958 Variomatic
- 1.20.14 1965 Red light camera
- 1.20.15 1968 Stochastic cooling
- 1.20.16 1980 Clap skate
- 1.21 Transportation
- 1.22 Others
- 1.1 Arts and Architecture
- 2 Discoveries
- 2.1 Astronomy
- 2.1.1 1592 Columba (constellation)
- 2.1.2 1597 Novaya Zemlya effect
- 2.1.3 1597–1598 Apus (southern constellation)
- 2.1.4 1597–1598 Chamaeleon (constellation)
- 2.1.5 1597–1598 Dorado (constellation)
- 2.1.6 1597–1598 Grus (constellation)
- 2.1.7 1597–1598 Hydrus (southern constellation)
- 2.1.8 1597–1598 Indus (constellation)
- 2.1.9 1597–1598 Musca (southern constellation)
- 2.1.10 1597–1598 Pavo (constellation)
- 2.1.11 1597–1598 Phoenix (constellation)
- 2.1.12 1597–1598 Triangulum Australe (southern constellation)
- 2.1.13 1597–1598 Tucana (southern constellation)
- 2.1.14 1597–1598 Volans (southern constellation)
- 2.1.15 1612–1613 Camelopardalis (constellation)
- 2.1.16 1612–1613 Monoceros (constellation)
- 2.1.17 1655 Rings of Saturn
- 2.1.18 1655 Titan (Saturn's moon)
- 2.1.19 1932 Evidence of dark matter
- 2.1.20 1948 Miranda (Uranus's moon)
- 2.1.21 1949 Nereid (Neptune's moon)
- 2.2 Biology
- 2.3 Chemistry
- 2.4 Genetics
- 2.5 Geology
- 2.6 Mathematics
- 2.7 Mechanics
- 2.8 Medicine
- 2.9 Microbiology
- 2.9.1 1658 Red blood cells (Erythrocytes)
- 2.9.2 1674 Infusoria (Protist)
- 2.9.3 1674 Protozoa
- 2.9.4 1676 Bacteria
- 2.9.5 1677 Spermatozoa
- 2.9.6 1700 Volvox
- 2.9.7 1885 Biological nitrogen fixation
- 2.9.8 1895 Sulfate-reducing bacteria
- 2.9.9 1898 Concept of the Virus (Tobacco mosaic virus)
- 2.9.10 1904 Enrichment culture
- 2.10 Paleoanthropology
- 2.11 Physics
- 2.11.1 1678 Wave theory of light
- 2.11.2 1690 Huygens' principle
- 2.11.3 1738 Bernoulli's principle
- 2.11.4 1785 Brownian motion
- 2.11.5 1857 Buys Ballot's law
- 2.11.6 1873 Van der Waals equation of state
- 2.11.7 1873 Van der Waals forces
- 2.11.8 1880 Law of corresponding states
- 2.11.9 1892 Lorentz force
- 2.11.10 1896 Zeeman effect
- 2.11.11 1908 Liquid helium
- 2.11.12 1911 Superconductivity
- 2.11.13 1920 Van der Pol oscillator
- 2.11.14 1925 Electron spin
- 2.11.15 1926 Solid helium
- 2.11.16 1930 De Haas–van Alphen effect
- 2.11.17 1948 Casimir effect
- 2.11.18 1952 Tellegen's theorem
- 2.1 Astronomy
- 3 Explorations
- 3.1 Maritime explorations
- 3.1.1 1594 Orange Islands
- 3.1.2 1596 Bear Island
- 3.1.3 1596 Spitsbergen
- 3.1.4 1596 Svalbard (archipelago)
- 3.1.5 1600 Falkland Islands
- 3.1.6 1606 Pennefather River, Cape York Peninsula, Gulf of Carpentaria, Northern Australia (Willem Janszoon's voyage)
- 3.1.7 1609 Manhattan, New York
- 3.1.8 1609 Hudson Valley
- 3.1.9 1610–1611 Brouwer Route
- 3.1.10 1614 Jan Mayen (island)
- 3.1.11 1614 Hell Gate, East River, New York
- 3.1.12 1614 Long Island Sound
- 3.1.13 1614 Connecticut River
- 3.1.14 1614 Fishers Island, New York
- 3.1.15 1615 Staten Island
- 3.1.16 1616 Cape Horn
- 3.1.17 1616 Tonga
- 3.1.18 1616 Hoorn Islands
- 3.1.19 1616 New Ireland (island)
- 3.1.20 1616 Schouten Islands, Indonesia
- 3.1.21 1616 Schouten Islands, Papua New Guinea
- 3.1.22 1616 Dirk Hartog Island, Shark Bay, Western Australia
- 3.1.23 1619 Houtman Abrolhos, Western Australia
- 3.1.24 1623 Gulf of Carpentaria, Northern Australia
- 3.1.25 1623 Staaten River, Cape York Peninsula, Northern Australia
- 3.1.26 1623 Arnhem Land, Gulf of Carpentaria, Northern Australia
- 3.1.27 1623 Groote Eylandt, Gulf of Carpentaria, Northern Australia
- 3.1.28 1624 Hermite Islands
- 3.1.29 1627 Southern Australia coast (from Cape Leeuwin to Ceduna)
- 3.1.30 1627 St Francis Island, Nuyts Archipelago, South Australia
- 3.1.31 1627 St Peter Island, Nuyts Archipelago, South Australia
- 3.1.32 1629 West Wallabi Island & East Wallabi Island, Wallabi Group, Houtman Abrolhos, Western Australia
- 3.1.33 1642 Tasmania, Southern Australia
- 3.1.34 1642 Maatsuyker Island, De Witt Island, Maatsuyker Islands Group, Tasmania, Southern Australia
- 3.1.35 1642 Maria Island, Tasmania, Southern Australia
- 3.1.36 1642 Pedra Branca, Tasmania, Southern Australia
- 3.1.37 1642 Schouten Island, Tasmania, Southern Australia
- 3.1.38 1642 Storm Bay, Tasmania, Southern Australia
- 3.1.39 1642 New Zealand
- 3.1.40 1643 Fiji
- 3.1.41 1643 Tongatapu & Haʻapai, Tonga
- 3.1.42 1643 Cape Patience, Sakhalin
- 3.1.43 1643 Kuril Islands
- 3.1.44 1643 Vries Strait, Kuril Islands
- 3.1.45 1643 Gulf of Patience, Sea of Okhotsk
- 3.1.46 1696 Rottnest Island, Western Australian coast
- 3.1.47 1697 Swan River, Western Australia
- 3.1.48 1722 Easter Island
- 3.1.49 1722 Samoa
- 3.1.50 1779 Orange River
- 3.2 Scientific explorations
- 3.3 Others
- 3.1 Maritime explorations
- 4 See also
- 5 Bibliography
- 6 References
Inventions and Innovations
Arts and Architecture
Movements and Styles
1917 De Stijl (Neo-Plasticism)
In general, De Stijl proposed ultimate simplicity and abstraction, both in architecture and painting, by using only straight horizontal and vertical lines and rectangular forms. Furthermore, their formal vocabulary was limited to the primary colours, red, yellow, and blue, and the three primary values, black, white, and grey. De Stijl's principal members were the painters Theo van Doesburg (1883–1931), Piet Mondrian (1872–1944), Vilmos Huszár (1884–1960), and Bart van der Leck (1876–1958), and the architects Gerrit Rietveld (1888–1964), Robert van 't Hoff (1888–1979), and J.J.P. Oud (1890–1963).
1400s-1600s Dutch-Flemish gable architecture (Netherlandish gabled roof)
The Dutch gable was a notable feature of the Dutch-Flemish Renaissance architecture (or Mannerist architecture) which spread to northern European countries (such as Germany, Denmark, Sweden and Poland) from the Low Countries, arriving in Britain during the latter part of the 16th century. Some of notable castles/buildings in the Nordic countries and former Hansa cities such as Frederiksborg Castle, Rosenborg Castle, Kronborg Castle, Børsen, Riga's House of the Blackheads and Gdańsk's Green Gate were built in Dutch-Flemish Renaissance style with sweeping gables, sandstone decorations and copper-covered roofs. Later Dutch gables with flowing curves became absorbed into Baroque architecture. Examples of Dutch-gabled buildings can be found in historic cities across Europe like Potsdam, Gdansk and Gothenburg. The style also spread beyond Europe, for example Barbados is well known for the Dutch gables on its historic buildings. Dutch settlers in South Africa also brought with them building styles from the Netherlands which included the use of prominent Dutch gables but adjusted to the Western Cape region where the style became known as Cape Dutch architecture. In the Americas and Northern Europe, the West End Collegiate Church (New York City, 1892), the Chicago Varnish Company Building (Chicago, 1895) and the Helsingør Station (Helsingør, Denmark, 1891) are typical examples of the Dutch-Flemish Renaissance Revival architecture in the late 19th century.
1910s Amsterdam School (Dutch Expressionist architecture)
The Amsterdam School (Dutch: Amsterdamse School) is a style of architecture that arose from 1910 through about 1930 in The Netherlands. The Amsterdam School movement is part of international Expressionist architecture, sometimes linked to German Brick Expressionism.
1924 Rietveld Schröder House (De Stijl architecture)
The Rietveld Schröder House or Schröder House (Rietveld Schröderhuis in Dutch) in Utrecht was built in 1924 by Dutch architect Gerrit Rietveld. It is a listed monument since 1976 and UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000. The Rietveld Schröder House constitutes both inside and outside a radical break with all architecture before it. There is little distinction between interior and exterior space. The rectilinear lines and planes flow from outside to inside, with the same colour palette and surfaces. Inside there is no static accumulation of rooms, but a dynamic, changeable open zone. The house is one of the best known examples of De Stijl architecture and arguably the only true De Stijl building.
1600s Dutch door
The Dutch door (also known as stable door or half door) is a type of door divided horizontally in such a fashion that the bottom half may remain shut while the top half opens. The initial purpose of this door was to keep animals out of farmhouses, or keep children inside, while allowing light and air to filter through the open top. This type of door was common in the Netherlands in the seventeenth century and appears in Dutch paintings of the period. They were also commonly found in the Dutch cultural areas of New York, New Jersey (before the American Revolution) and South Africa.
1917 Red and Blue Chair
The Red and Blue Chair is a chairman designed in 1917 by Gerrit Rietveld. It represents one of the first explorations by the De Stijl art movement in three dimensions. It features several Rietveld joints.
1934 Zig-zag chair
The Zig Zag-chair is a chair designed by Gerrit Rietveld in 1934. It is a minimalistic design without legs, made by 4 flat wooden tiles that are merged in a Z-shape using Dovetail joints. It was designed for the Rietveld Schröder House in Utrecht.
1400s Modern oil painting
Although oil paint was first used for the Buddhist paintings by Indian and Chinese painters sometime between the fifth and tenth centuries, it did not gain popularity until the 15th century. Its practice may have migrated westward during the Middle Ages. Oil paint eventually became the principal medium used for creating artworks as its advantages became widely known. The transition began with Early Netherlandish painting in northern Europe, and by the height of the Renaissance oil painting techniques had almost completely replaced tempera paints in the majority of Europe. Early Netherlandish painting (Jan van Eyck in particular) in the 15th century was the first to make oil the usual painting medium, and explore the use of layers and glazes, followed by the rest of Northern Europe, and only then Italy. Early works were still panel paintings on wood, but around the end of the 15th century canvas became more popular, as it was cheaper, easier to transport, and allowed larger works.
1400s–1600s Dutch realism / Netherlandish realism (arts)
Two aspects of realism were rooted in at least two centuries of Netherlandish tradition: conspicuous textural imitation and a penchant for ordinary and exaggeratedly comic scenes. Two hundred years before the rise of literary realism, Dutch painters had already made an art of the everyday – pictures that served as a compelling model for the novelists who followed. By the mid-1800s, 17th-century Dutch painting figured virtually everywhere in the British and French fiction we esteem today as the vanguard of realism.
Hieronymus Bosch is considered one of the prime examples of pre-surrealism and any artist that produced dream-state or hallucinatory art would fit into the pre-surrealist category. And it was on his example that the surrealists relied most. In the 20th century, Bosch's paintings (e.g. The Garden of Earthly Delights, The Haywain, The Temptation of St. Anthony and The Seven Deadly Sins and the Four Last Things) were cited by the Surrealists as precursors to their own visions.
1500s–1600s Modern still-life painting
Still-life painting as an independent genre or specialty first flourished in the Netherlands in the last quarter of the 16th century, and the English term derives from stilleven: still life, which is a calque while Romance languages (as well as Greek, Polish, Russian and Turkish) tend to use terms meaning dead nature.
1500s–1600s Modern landscape art
The term "landscape" actually derives from the Dutch word landschap, which originally meant "region, tract of land" but acquired the artistic connotation, "a picture depicting scenery on land" in the early 1500s. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the tradition of depicting pure landscapes declined, and the landscape was seen only as a setting for religious and figural scenes. This tradition continued until the 16th century when artists began to view the landscape as a subject in its own right. The Dutch Golden Age painting of the 17th century saw the dramatic growth of landscape painting, in which many artists specialized, and the development of extremely subtle realist techniques for depicting light and weather.
1500s Genre painting
The Flemish Renaissance painter Pieter Brueghel the Elder made peasants and their activities the subject of many of his paintings, and genre painting was to flourish in Northern Europe in Brueghel's wake. Adriaen van Ostade, David Teniers, Aelbert Cuyp, Jan Steen, Johannes Vermeer and Pieter de Hooch were among the many painters specializing in genre subjects in the Netherlands during the 17th century. The generally small scale of these artists' paintings was appropriate for their display in the homes of middle class purchasers.
1600s Modern marine painting
Marine painting began in keeping with medieval Christian art tradition, and so the original paintings portrayed the sea only from a bird's eye view, and everything, even the waves, were organized and symmetrical. The viewpoint, symmetry, and overall order of these early paintings were to keep in mind the organization of the heavenly cosmos from which the earth was viewed. Later Dutch artists like Hendrick Cornelisz Vroom, Cornelius Claesz, Abraham Storck, Jan Porcellis, Simon de Vlieger, Willem van de Velde the Elder, Willem van de Velde the Younger and Ludolf Bakhuizen developed new methods for painting, often from a horizontal point of view, with a lower horizon and more focus on realism than symmetry.
The term vanitas is most often associated with vanitas still life paintings that were popular in seventeenth-century Dutch art by the artists like Pieter Claesz. Common vanitas symbols include skulls, which are a reminder of the certainty of death; rotten fruit, which symbolizes decay; bubbles, which symbolize the brevity of life and suddenness of death; smoke, watches, and hourglasses, which symbolize the brevity of life; and musical instruments, which symbolize brevity and the ephemeral nature of life. Fruit, flowers and butterflies can be interpreted in the same way, and a peeled lemon, as well as accompanying seafood was, like life, attractive to look at, but bitter to taste.
1600s Civic group portraiture
Group portraits were produced in great numbers during the Baroque period, particularly in the Netherlands. Unlike in the rest of Europe, Dutch artists received no commissions from the Calvinist Church which had forbidden such images or from the aristocracy which was virtually non-existent. Instead, commissions came from civic and businesses associations. Dutch painter Frans Hals used fluid brush strokes of vivid color to enliven his group portraits, including those of the civil guards to which he belonged. Rembrandt benefitted greatly from such commissions and from the general appreciation of art by bourgeois clients, who supported portraiture as well as still-life and landscapes painting. In addition, the world's first significant art and dealer markets flourished in Holland at that time.
In the 17th century, Dutch painters (like Frans Hals, Rembrandt, Jan Lievens and Johannes Vermeer) began to create uncommissioned paintings called tronies that focused on the features and/or expressions of people who were not intended to be identifiable. Tronies were not necessarily defined by their moral or narrative content as were conventional paintings of the period. They were conceived more for art's sake than to satisfy the artistic conventions.
1600s Rembrandt lighting
Rembrandt lighting is a lighting technique that is used in studio portrait photography. It can be achieved using one light and a reflector, or two lights, and is popular because it is capable of producing images which appear both natural and compelling with a minimum of equipment. Rembrandt lighting is characterized by an illuminated triangle under the eye of the subject, on the less illuminated side of the face. It is named for the Dutch painter Rembrandt, who often used this type of lighting in his portrait paintings.
Pronkstilleven (pronk still life or ostentatious still life) is a type of banquet piece which has as its distinguishing feature a quality of ostentation and splendor; they usually depict one or more especially precious objects. Although the term is a post-17th century invention, this still life type is characteristic of the second half of the seventeenth century, developed by the still life masters like Jan Davidsz. de Heem, Abraham van Beijeren, Willem Claeszoon Heda and Willem Kalf.
Vincent van Gogh's work is most often associated with Post-Impressionism, but his innovative style had a vast influence on 20th-century art and established what would later be known as Expressionism, also greatly influencing fauvism and early abstractionism.
1920s–1960s MC Escher's graphic arts
Dutch graphic artist Maurits Cornelis Escher, usually referred to as M. C. Escher, is known for his often mathematically inspired woodcuts, lithographs, and mezzotints. These feature impossible constructions, explorations of infinity, architecture, and tessellations. The special way of thinking and the rich graphic work of M.C. Escher has had a continuous influence in science and art, as well as being referenced in popular culture. His ideas have been used in psychology, philosophy, logic, crystallography and topology, etc. The art of M.C. Escher is based on mathematical principles like tessellations, spherical geometry, the Möbius strip, unusual perspectives, visual paradoxes, different kinds of symmetries and impossible objects. Gödel, Escher, Bach by Douglas Hofstadter, published in 1979, discusses the ideas of self-reference and strange loops, drawing on a wide range of artistic and scientific work, including the art of M. C. Escher and the music of J. S. Bach, to illustrate ideas behind Gödel's incompleteness theorems.
Miffy (Nijntje) is a small female rabbit in a series of picture books drawn and written by Dutch artist Dick Bruna.
100s BC. Holstein Friesian cattle
Holsteins or Holstein-Friesians are a breed of cattle known today as the world's highest-production dairy animals. Originating in Europe, Friesians were bred in what is now the Netherlands and more specifically in the two northern provinces of North Holland and Friesland, and northern Germany, more specifically what is now Schleswig-Holstein. The animals were the regional cattle of the Frisians and the Saxons. The Dutch breeders bred and oversaw the development of the breed with the goal of obtaining animals that could best use grass, the area's most abundant resource. Over the centuries, the result was a high-producing, black-and-white dairy cow. It is black and white due to artificial selection by the breeders. Holsteins are mostly black and white but sometimes are red and white. Although called red, the "red" resembles the brown of a chestnut horse. They get this coloration from their ancestors, a now extinct breed that lived with two nomadic tribes of Northern Europe, the Batavians and the Frisians. Crossbreeding may have led to the foundation of the present Holstein-Friesian breed, as the cattle of these two tribes from then are described identically in historical records.
1500s Orange-coloured carrot
Through history, carrots have been white, black, purple, red, brown or yellow. They had been orange too, but that never the dominant colour. Orange-coloured carrots appeared in the Netherlands in the 16th century. In the 1500s, Dutch farmers in the northern Dutch town of Hoorn, through selective breeding, encouraged orange carrots out of preference. Dutch carrot growers invented the orange carrot by cross breeding pale yellow carrots with red carrots. Orange carrots are said to have been bred in honour of the House of Orange, who led the Dutch Revolt against the Spanish Empire and later became the Dutch Royal family. beta-Carotene, found in orange carrots is converted into vitamin A in the body by all animals except cats.
2010 Groasis Waterboxx
The Groasis Waterboxx is a device designed to help grow trees in dry areas. It was invented and developed by Dutch former flower exporter Pieter Hoff, and won the Popular Science Green Tech Best of What’s New Innovation of the year award for 2010.
Tinbergen's four questions, named after Nikolaas Tinbergen (one of the founders of modern ethology), are complementary categories of explanations for behavior. It suggests that an integrative understanding of behavior must include both a proximate and ultimate (functional) analysis of behavior, as well as an understanding of both phylogenetic/developmental history and the operation of current mechanisms.
Cartography and geography
1569 Mercator projection (beginning of modern cartography)
The Mercator projection is a cylindrical map projection presented by the Flemish geographer and cartographer Gerardus Mercator in 1569. It became the standard map projection for nautical purposes because of its ability to represent lines of constant course, known as rhumb lines or loxodromes, as straight segments which conserve the angles with the meridians.
1570 First modern world atlas (Theatrum Orbis Terrarum)
Flemish geographer and cartographer Abraham Ortelius generally recognized as the creator of the world's first modern atlas, the Theatrum Orbis Terrarum (Theatre of the World). The Ortelius atlas consisted of a collection of uniform map sheets and sustaining text bound to form a book for which copper printing plates were specifically engraved. It is sometimes referred to as the summary of sixteenth-century cartography.
1584 First printed sea atlas (nautical atlas)
The first printed atlas of nautical charts (De Spieghel der Zeevaerdt or The Mirror of Navigation / The Mariner's Mirror) was produced by the Dutch seaman and cartographer Lucas Janszoon Waghenaer in Leiden (1584). This atlas was the first attempt to systematically codify the nautical maps, much as Ortelius' Theatrum Orbis Terrarum had done for land maps. The English translation of Waghenaer's work was published in 1588 and became so popular that any volume of sea charts soon became known as a "waggoner".
1596 Continental drift hypothesis
The speculation that continents might have 'drifted' was first put forward by Abraham Ortelius in 1596. The concept was independently and more fully developed by Alfred Wegener in 1912. Because Wegener's publications were widely available in German and English, and because he adduced geological support for the idea, Wegener is credited by most geologists as the first to recognize the possibility of continental drift. During the 1960s geophysical and geological evidence for seafloor spreading at mid-oceanic ridges became increasingly compelling to geologists and finally established continental drift as an ongoing global mechanism. After more than three centuries, Ortelius's supposition of continental drift was proven correct.
Chemicals and materials
While making a coloured liquid for a thermometer, Cornelis Drebbel dropped a flask of Aqua regia on a tin window sill, and discovered that stannous chloride makes the color of carmine much brighter and more durable. Though Drebbel himself never made much money from his work, his daughters Anna and Catharina and his sons-in-law Abraham and Johannes Sibertus Kuffler set up a successful dye works. One was set up in 1643 in Bow, London, and the resulting color was called bow dye.
Dutch chemical company DSM invented and patented the Dyneema in 1979. Dyneema fibres have been in commercial production since 1990 at their plant at Heerlen, the Netherlands. These fibers are manufactured by means of a gel-spinning process that combines extreme strength with incredible softness. Dyneema fibres, based on ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene (UHMWPE), is used in many applications in various end-markets, such as life protection, shipping, fishing, offshore, sailing, medical and textiles.
Communication and multimedia
1962 Compact cassette
In 1962 Philips invented the compact audio cassette medium for audio storage, introducing it in Europe in August 1963 (at the Berlin Radio Show) and in the United States (under the Norelco brand) in November 1964, with the trademark name Compact Cassette.
Laserdisc technology, using a transparent disc, was invented by David Paul Gregg in 1958 (and patented in 1961 and 1990). By 1969, Philips had developed a videodisc in reflective mode, which has great advantages over the transparent mode. MCA and Philips decided to join their efforts. They first publicly demonstrated the videodisc in 1972. Laserdisc was first available on the market, in Atlanta, on 15 December 1978, two years after the VHS VCR and four years before the CD, which is based on Laserdisc technology. Philips produced the players and MCA the discs.
1979 Compact disc
The compact disc was jointly developed by Philips (Joop Sinjou) and Sony (Toshitada Doi). In the early 1970s, Philips' researchers started experiments with "audio-only" optical discs, and at the end of the 1970s, Philips, Sony, and other companies presented prototypes of digital audio discs. Philips publicly demonstrated a prototype of an optical digital audio disc at a press conference titled "Philips Introduce Compact Disc" in Eindhoven, The Netherlands on 8 March 1979.
Bluetooth, a low-energy, peer-to-peer wireless technology was originally developed by Dutch electrical engineer Jaap Haartsen and Swedish engineer Sven Mattisson in 1990s, working at Ericcson in Lund, Sweden. It became a global standard of short distance wireless connection.
In 1991, NCR Corporation/AT&T Corporation invented the precursor to 802.11 in Nieuwegein, The Netherlands. Dutch electrical engineer Vic Hayes, who held the chair of IEEE 802.11 committee for 10 years, which was set up in 1990 to establish a wireless networking standard. He has been called the father of Wi-Fi (the brand name for products using IEEE 802.11 standards) because he managed the committee that created the first IEEE 802.11 (802.11a & 802.11b) standard in 1997.
Ambilight, short for "ambient lighting", is a lighting system for televisions developed by Philips in 2002.
In 1982, Philips teamed with Sony to launch the Compact Disc; this format evolved into the DVD and later Blu-ray, which Philips launched with Sony in 1997 and 2006 respectively.
Computer science and information technology
1956 Dijkstra's algorithm
Dijkstra's algorithm, conceived by Dutch computer scientist Edsger Dijkstra in 1956 and published in 1959, is a graph search algorithm that solves the single-source shortest path problem for a graph with non-negative edge path costs, producing a shortest path tree. This algorithm is often used in routing and as a subroutine in other graph algorithms.
1965 Semaphore (programming)
The semaphore concept was invented by Dutch computer scientist Edsger Dijkstra in 1965, and the concept has found widespread use in a variety of operating systems.
1965 Dekker's algorithm
Dekker's algorithm is the first known correct solution to the mutual exclusion problem in concurrent programming. The solution is attributed to Dutch mathematician Theodorus Dekker by Edsger Dijkstra in his manuscript on cooperating sequential processes. It allows two threads to share a single-use resource without conflict, using only shared memory for communication. Dekker's algorithm is the first published software-only, two-process mutual exclusion algotithm.
1968 Van Wijngaarden grammar
Van Wijngaarden grammar (also vW-grammar or W-grammar) is a two-level grammar which provides a technique to define potentially infinite context-free grammars in a finite number of rules. The formalism was invented by Adriaan van Wijngaarden to define rigorously some syntactic restrictions which previously had to be formulated in natural language, despite their essentially syntactical content. Typical applications are the treatment of gender and number in natural language syntax and the well-definedness of identifiers in programming languages. The technique was used and developed in the definition of the programming language ALGOL 68. It is an example of the larger class of affix grammars.
1968 Structured programming
In 1968, computer programming was in a state of crisis. Edsger Dijkstra was one of a small group of academics and industrial programmers who advocated a new programming style to improve the quality of programs. Dijkstra coined the phrase "structured programming" and during the 1970s this became the new programming orthodoxy.
1985 Eight-to-fourteen modulation (EFM)
EFM (Eight-to-Fourteen Modulation) was invented by Dutch electrical engineer Kees A. Schouhamer Immink in 1985. Eight-to-fourteen modulation (EFM) is a data encoding technique – formally, a channel code – used by compact discs (CD), laserdiscs (LD) and pre-Hi-MD MiniDiscs.
Python programming language was conceived in the late 1980s and its implementation was started in December 1989 by Guido van Rossum.
1991 Vim (text editor)
Vim is a text editor written by the Dutch free software programmer Bram Moolenaar and first released publicly in 1991. Based on the Vi editor common to Unix-like systems, Vim is designed for use both from a command line interface and as a standalone application in a graphical user interface.
EFMPlus is the channel code used in DVDs and SACDs, a more efficient successor of EFM used in CD. EFMPlus, created by Dutch electrical engineer Kees A. Schouhamer Immink, who also designed EFM, is 6% less efficient than Toshiba's SD code, which resulted in a capacity of 4.7 Gbyte instead of SD's original 5 Gbyte. The great advantage of EFMPlus is its great resilience against disc damage such as scratches and fingerprints.
1602 Public limited liability joint-stock company (first modern corporation / first company to issue stock)
1602 Modern multinational corporation (first modern company to go public / first public company)
The Dutch East India Company was arguably the first megacorporation, possessing quasi-governmental powers, including the ability to wage war, imprison and execute convicts, negotiate treaties, coin money, and establish colonies.
1600s Dutch auction
Dutch auction also known as an open descending price auction. Named after the famous auctions of Dutch tulip bulbs in the 17th century, it is based on a pricing system devised by Nobel prize winning economist William Vickrey. In the traditional Dutch auction, the auctioneer begins with a high asking price which is lowered until some participant is willing to accept the auctioneer's price. The winning participant pays the last announced price. Dutch auction is also sometimes used to describe online auctions where several identical goods are sold simultaneously to an equal number of high bidders. In addition to cut flower sales in the Netherlands, Dutch auctions have also been used for perishable commodities such as fish and tobacco.
1600s First large-scale foreign direct investment (before the Industrial Revolution)
The phenomenon of foreign investment has long been known to the Dutch. The construction in 1619 of a train-oil factory on Smeerenburg in the Spitsbergen islands by the Noordsche Compagnie, and the acquisition in 1626 of Manhattan Island by the Dutch West India Company are referred to as the earliest cases of foreign direct investment (FDI) in Dutch history (and world history). Throughout the seventeenth century, the Dutch East India Company (VOC) and the Dutch West India Company (WIC) also began to create trading settlements around the globe. Their trading activities generated enormous wealth, making the Dutch Republic one of the most prosperous countries of that time. The Dutch Republic's extensive arms trade also occasioned an interesting episode in the industrial development of early-modern Sweden, where arms merchants like Louis de Geer and the Trip brothers, invested in iron mines and iron works, an other early example of foreign direct investment.
1600s Modern capitalism (first modern economy)
Economic historians consider the Netherlands as the first thoroughly capitalist country. In Early modern Europe it featured the wealthiest trading city (Amsterdam) and the first full-time stock exchange. The inventiveness of the traders led to insurance and retirement funds, along with much less benign phenomena as well, such as the boom-bust cycle, the world's first asset-inflation bubble, the Tulip mania of 1636–1637. World-systems theorists (including Immanuel Wallerstein and Giovanni Arrighi) often consider the economic primacy of the Dutch Republic in the 17th century as the first capitalist hegemony of world history (followed by hegemonies of the United Kingdom in the 19th century and the United States in the 20th century).
1936 Dynamic macroeconomic model
Dutch economist Jan Tinbergen developed the first national comprehensive macroeconomic model, which he first built for the Netherlands and later applied to the United States and the United Kingdom after World War II.
The concept of fair trade has been around for over 40 years, but a formal labelling scheme didn't get off the ground until the 1980s. At the initiative of Mexican coffee farmers, the world's first Fairtrade labelling organisation, Stichting Max Havelaar, was launched in the Netherlands on 15 November 1988 by Nico Roozen, Frans van der Hoff and Dutch ecumenical development agency Solidaridad. It was branded "Max Havelaar" after a fictional Dutch character who opposed the exploitation of coffee pickers in Dutch colonies.
1602 First official stock exchange (first organized stock market)
The Amsterdam Stock Exchange is considered the oldest in the world. It was established in 1602 by the Dutch East India Company (Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie, or "VOC") for dealings in its printed stocks and bonds. Here, the Dutch also pioneered stock futures, stock options, short selling, debt-equity swaps, merchant banking, bonds, unit trusts and other speculative instruments. Also, a speculative bubble that crashed in 1695, and a change in fashion that unfolded and reverted in time with the market.
1602 Initial public offering (IPO)
In 1602, Vereenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie (VOC), otherwise known as the Dutch East India Company, became the first modern company to issue shares to the public, thus launching the first initial public offering (IPO). The VOC held the first public offering of shares in history shortly after its founding, for much the same reason that companies offer their shares in IPOs today.
1609 Central bank
1609 Short selling
Financial innovation in Amsterdam took many forms. In 1609, investors led by one Isaac Le Maire formed history's first bear syndicate, but their coordinated trading had only a modest impact in driving down share prices, which tended to be robust throughout the 17th century.
1661 First European banknote
In 1656, King Charles X Gustav of Sweden signed two charters creating two private banks under the directorship of Johan Palmstruch (though before having been ennobled he was called Johan Wittmacher or Hans Wittmacher), a Riga-born merchant of Dutch origin. Palmstruch modeled the banks on those of Amsterdam where he had become a burgher. The first real European banknote was issued in 1661 by the Stockholms Banco of Johan Palmstruch, a private bank under state charter (precursor to the Sveriges Riksbank, the central bank of Sweden).
1688 First stock trading handbook (Confusion of Confusions)
Joseph de la Vega, also known as Joseph Penso de la Vega, was an Amsterdam trader from a Spanish Jewish family and a prolific writer as well as a successful businessman in 17th-century Amsterdam. His 1688 book Confusion de Confusiones (Confusion of Confusions) explained the workings of the city's stock market. It was the earliest book about stock trading, taking the form of a dialogue between a merchant, a shareholder and a philosopher, the book described a market that was sophisticated but also prone to excesses, and de la Vega offered advice to his readers on such topics as the unpredictability of market shifts and the importance of patience in investment.
1600s First modern global financial centre (Amsterdam Entrepôt)
In the Early Modern period (the seventeenth century in particular), Amsterdam, despite its small size and population, was the first ever global financial centre. Amsterdam – unlike its predecessors Bruges, Antwerp, Genoa, and Venice – was able to control crucial resources and markets directly, sending its fleets to all quarters of the world.
1600s Modern financial system
In early 1600s, the Dutch revolutionized domestic and international finance by inventing the common stock — that of the Dutch East India Company and founding a proto-central bank, the Wisselbank or Bank of Amsterdam. In 1609, the Dutch had already had a government bond market for some decades. Shortly thereafter, the Dutch Republic had in place, in one form or another, all of the key components of a modern financial system: a strong public credit, a stable money, elements of a banking system, a central bank of sorts, and securities markets. The Dutch Republic went on to become the leading economy of the seventeenth century.
Foods and drink
Many people believe it was the Dutch who invented doughnuts. A Dutch snack made from potatoes had a round shape like a ball, but, like Gregory's dough balls, needed a little longer time when fried to cook the inside thoroughly. These potato-balls developed into doughnuts when the Dutch finally made them into ring-shapes to help them fry in less amount of time. Finally, in 1620 the Pilgrims, who had lived in Holland, came to New World (North America) and brought the doughnut.
A stroopwafel (also known as syrup waffle, treacle waffle or caramel waffle) is a waffle made from two thin layers of baked batter with a caramel-like syrup filling in the middle. They were first made in Gouda in the Netherlands, in 1780s. The traditional way to eat the stroopwafel is to place it atop of a drinking vessel with a hot beverage (coffee, tea or chocolate) inside that fits the diameter of the waffle. The heat from the rising steam warms the waffle and slightly softens the inside and makes the waffle soft on one side while still crispy on the other.
1828 Cocoa powder (birth of modern chocolate industry)
In 1820s, Casparus van Houten Sr. patented an inexpensive method for pressing the fat from roasted cocoa beans. The center of the bean, known as the "nib," contains an average of 54 percent cocoa butter, which is a natural fat. Van Houten's machine – a hydraulic press – reduced the cocoa butter content by nearly half. This created a "cake" that could be pulverized into cocoa powder, which was to become the basis of all chocolate products.
1828 Dutched cocoa (Dutch-processed cocoa)
Dutch process chocolate or Dutched chocolate is chocolate that has been treated with an alkalizing agent to modify its color and give it a milder taste compared to "natural cocoa" extracted with the Broma process. It forms the basis for much of modern chocolate, and is used in ice cream, hot cocoa, and baking. The Dutch process was developed in the early 19th century by Dutch chocolate maker Coenraad Johannes van Houten, whose father Casparus is responsible for the development of the method of removing fat from cacao beans by hydraulic press around 1828, forming the basis for cocoa powder.
Law and jurisprudence
1609 Freedom of the Seas (Mare Liberum)
In 1609, Hugo Grotius, famous Dutch jurist who is generally known as the father of modern international law, published his book Mare Liberum (The Free Sea), which first formulated the notion of the freedom of the seas. He developed this idea into a legal principle. According to his view, everyone had a right under international law to sail freely and trade with others. His work sparked a debate in the seventeenth century as to the freedom of the seas, and whether states could exclude the vessels of other states from certain waters. However, Grotius was the winner of this debate, as freedom of the seas finally became a universally recognized legal principle, as it went hand in hand with key words such as communication, trade and peace, and was inseparable from being fair and open, and was in the interests of human society as a whole.
1625 Modern international law (De jure belli ac pacis)
The publication of De jure belli ac pacis (English: On the Law of War and Peace) by Hugo Grotius in 1625 had marked the emergence of international law as an 'autonomous legal science'. Grotius' truly distinctive contribution to international law (law of nations) was that he 'secularized' it.
Grotian conception of international society became the most distinctive characteristic of the internationalist (or rationalist) tradition in international politics. This is why it is also very often called the Grotian tradition. According to it international politics is taking place within international society in which states are bound not only by rules of prudence or expediency but also of morality and law. It could be argued though that Hugo Grotius was not the first one to formulate the international society doctrine. But Grotius was the first one to expressely and clearly define the idea of one society of states, governed not by force or warfare but by actual laws and mutual agreement to enforce those laws. As Hedley Bull (Hugo Grotius and International Relations, 1992) declared: ‘The idea of international society which Grotius propounded was given concrete expression in the Peace of Westphalia’, affirming that ‘Grotius must be considered the intellectual father of this first general peace settlement of modern times’.
1702 Cannon shot rule (Law of the Sea)
By the end of the seventeenth century, support was growing elsewhere for some limitation to the seaward extent of territorial waters. What emerged was the so-called "cannon shot rule", which deferred in theory to the idea that property rights could be acquired by actual occupation, and in practice to the effective range of shore-based cannon: about three nautical miles. The rule has long been associated with Cornelis van Bijnkershoek, a Dutch jurist who, especially in his De Dominio Maris Dissertatio (1702), advocated a middle ground between the extremes of Hugo Grotius (Mare Liberum) and John Selden (Mare Clausum), accepting both the freedom of states to navigate and exploit the resources the of the high seas and a right of coastal state to assert wide-ranging rights in a thus limited territorial sea.
2001 Legalization of same-sex marriage
In 2001, the Netherlands became the first country in the world to legally recognize (legalize) same-sex marriage.
1656 Pendulum clock
A pendulum clock uses a pendulum as its time base. From their invention until about 1930, the most accurate clocks were pendulum clocks. Pendulum clocks cannot operate on vehicles, because the accelerations of the vehicle drive the pendulum, causing inaccuracies. See marine chronometer for a discussion of the problems of navigational clocks. The pendulum clock was invented by Christian Huygens in 1656, based on the pendulum introduced by Galileo Galilei.
Pendulum clocks remained the mechanism of choice for accurate timekeeping for centuries, with the Fedchenko observatory clocks produced from after World War II up to around 1960 marking the end of the pendulum era as time standards considered. Pendulum clocks remain popular for domestic, decorative and antique use.
1675 Spiral balance spring for watch (spiral-hairspring watch)
There remains some dispute as to whether British scientist Robert Hooke was the actual inventor of the balance spring (his was a straight spring) or whether it was Dutch scientist Christiaan Huygens. The fact of the matter remains that it was Huygens who first successfully implemented a spiral balance spring in a portable timekeeper. This is significant because up to that point it had been the pendulum that was most reliable in keeping and portioning time, which cannot be integrated into a portable timepiece.
1714 Mercury thermometer with a standardised temperature scale (first modern thermometer)
1724 Fahrenheit temperature scale (first standard temperature scale)
Fahrenheit (symbol °F) is a temperature scale based on one proposed in 1724 by the Polish-born Dutch scientist Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit, after whom the scale is named. Fahrenheit had settled in Amsterdam in 1701 before travelling around Europe, meeting instrument makers and scientists. It was during this period he invented the mercury thermometer (1714). He returned to Amsterdam in 1717. He published his method for thermometer construction in the journal Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London in 1724. The Fahrenheit scale was the first widely used temperature scale. By the end of the 20th century, most countries used the Celsius scale rather than the Fahrenheit scale, though Canada retains it as a supplementary scale that can be used alongside Celsius. Fahrenheit remains the official scale for the following countries: Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, Belize, the Bahamas, Palau, and the United States and associated territories.
1862 Snellen chart
Snellen chart is an eye chart used by eye care professionals and others to measure visual acuity. Snellen charts are named after the Dutch ophthalmologist Hermann Snellen who developed the chart in 1862. Vision scientists now use a variation of this chart, designed by Ian Bailey and Jan Lovie.
1902 String galvanometer
Previous to the string galvanometer, scientists were using a machine called the capillary electrometer to measure the heart's electrical activity, but this device was unable to produce results of a diagnostic level. Dutch physiologist Willem Einthoven developed the string galvanometer in the early 20th century, publishing the first registration of its use to record an electrocardiogram in a Festschrift book in 1902. The first human electrocardiogram was recorded in 1887, however it was not until 1901 that a quantifiable result was obtained from the string galvanometer.
1922 Schilt photometer
In the 19th century it became clear that the heart generated electricity. The first to systematically approach the heart from an electrical point-of-view was Augustus Waller, working in St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, London. In 1911 he still saw little clinical application for his work. The breakthrough came when Willem Einthoven, working in Leiden, The Netherlands, used the string galvanometer invented by him in 1901, which was much more sensitive than the capillary electrometer that Waller used. Einthoven assigned the letters P, Q, R, S and T to the various deflections, and described the electrocardiographic features of a number of cardiovascular disorders. He was awarded the 1924 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine for his discovery.
1940 First European blood bank
1943 First practical artificial kidney (rotating drum dialyzer)
An artificial kidney is the machine and its related devices which allow to clean the blood of patients who have a temporary (acute) or an ongoing (chronic) failure of their kidneys. The first artificial kidney was developed by Willem Johan Kolff. The procedure of cleaning the blood by this means is called dialysis, a type of renal replacement therapy which is used to provide an artificial replacement for lost kidney function due to renal failure. It is a life support treatment and does not treat any kidney diseases.
1957 Artificial heart
On 12 December 1957, Dr. Willem Johan Kolff implanted an artificial heart into a dog at Cleveland Clinic. The dog lived for 90 minutes. In 1967, Dr. Kolff left Cleveland Clinic to start the Division of Artificial Organs at the University of Utah and pursue his work on the artificial heart. Under his supervision, a team of surgeons, chemists, physicists and bioengineers developed an artificial heart and made it ready for industrial serial production. To help manage his many endeavors, Dr. Kolff assigned project managers. Each project was named after its manager. Graduate student Robert Jarvik was the project manager for the artificial heart, which was subsequently renamed the Jarvik-7. Based on lengthy animal trials, this first total artificial heart was then successfully implanted into the thorax of Dr Barney Clark in December 1982. Patient Barney Clark survived 112 days with the device, dying on 23 March 1983.
1590s–1600s House of Orange-Nassau's military reforms
The early modern Military Revolution began with the military reforms inaugurated by Prince Maurice of Nassau with his cousins Count Willem Lodewijk of Nassau-Dillenburg and Count John VII of Nassau during the 1590s. Maurice developed a system of linear formations (linear tactics), discipline, drill, and volley fire based on classical Roman methods which made his army more efficient and his command and control more effective. He also developed a 43-step drill for firing the musket which was written into an illustrated weapons manual by Jacob de Gheyn II in 1607 (Wapenhandelinghe or Exerise of Arms). This became known as the Dutch drill. It was widely read and emulated in the rest of Europe. Adopting and perfecting the techniques pioneered by Maurice of Nassau several decades earlier, Gustavus Adolphus repeatedly proved his techniques by defeating the armies of Spain (1630–1632), an empire with resources fantastically larger than Sweden's.
1920s Norden bombsight
The Norden bombsight was designed by Carl Norden, a Dutch engineer educated in Switzerland who emigrated to the U.S. in 1904. In 1920, he started work on the Norden bombsight for the United States Navy. The first bombsight was produced in 1927. It was essentially an analog computer, and bombardiers were trained in great secrecy on how to use it. The device was used to drop bombs accurately from an aircraft, supposedly accurate enough to hit a 100-foot circle from an altitude of 21,000 feet—but under actual combat situations, such an accuracy was never achieved.
1939 Submarine snorkel
A submarine snorkel is a device that allows a submarine to operate submerged while still taking in air from above the surface. It was invented by the Dutchman J.J.Wichers shortly before World War II and copied by the Germans during the war for use by U-Boats. Its common military name is snort.
1975 Goalkeeper CIWS
Goalkeeper is a close-in weapon system (CIWS) and still in use as of 2013. It is an autonomous and completely automatic weapon system for short-range defense of ships against highly maneuverable missiles, aircraft and fast maneuvering surface vessels. Once activated the system automatically performs the entire process from surveillance and detection to destruction, including selection of the next priority target.
1812 First mechanical metronome
1950 Fokker organ
Dutch musician-physicist Adriaan Fokker designed and had built a number of keyboard instruments capable of playing microtonal scales via a generalized keyboard. The best-known of these is his 31-tone equal-tempered organ, which was installed in Teylers Museum in Haarlem in 1951. It is commonly called the Fokker organ.
The Kraakdoos or Cracklebox is a custom made battery-powered noise-making electronic device. It is a small box with six metal contacts on top, which when pressed by fingers will generate all manner of unusual sounds and tones. The human body becomes a part of the circuit and determines the range of sounds possible – different people will generate different results. The concept was first conceived by Michel Waisvisz and Geert Hamelberg in the 1960s, and developed further in the 1970s when Waisvisz joined the STEIM foundation in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
The Moodswinger is a twelve-string electric zither with an additional third bridge designed by Dutch luthier Yuri Landman. The rod which functions as the third bridge divides the strings into two sections to cause an overtone multiphonic sound.
2008 Springtime (guitar)
Philosophy and Social Sciences
Neostoicism was a syncretic philosophical movement, joining Stoicism and Christianity. Neostoicism was founded by Dutch-Flemish humanist Justus Lipsius, who in 1584 presented its rules, expounded in his book De constantia (On Constancy), as a dialogue between Lipsius and his friend Charles de Langhe. Neostoicism was one of the most important intellectual movements of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. It started in the Protestant Netherlands during the revolt against Catholic Spain.
1600s Early liberalism
“European liberalism," Isaiah Berlin wrote, "wears the appearance of a single coherent movement, little altered during almost three centuries, founded upon relatively simple foundations, laid by Locke or Grotius or even Spinoza; stretching back to Erasmus and Montaigne...”
As Bertrand Russell noted in his A History of Western Philosophy (1945): "Descartes lived in Holland for twenty years (1629–49), except for a few brief visits to France and one to England, all on business. It is impossible to exaggerate the importance of Holland in the seventeenth century, as the one country where there was freedom of speculation. Hobbes had to have his books printed there; Locke took refuge there during the five worst years of reaction in England before 1688; Bayle (of the Dictionary) found it necessary to live there; and Spinoza would hardly have been allowed to do his work in any other country." Russell described early liberalism in Europe: “Early liberalism was a product of England and Holland, and had certain well-marked characteristics. It stood for religious toleration; it was Protestant, but of a latitudinarian rather than of a fanatical kind; it regarded the wars of religion as silly...”
1630s–1640s Cartesianism (beginning of modern philosophy)
Cartesianism is the name given to the philosophical doctrine of René Descartes. Descartes is often regarded as the first thinker to emphasize the use of reason to develop the natural sciences. Cartesians view the mind as being wholly separate from the corporeal body. Sensation and the perception of reality are thought to be the source of untruth and illusions, with the only reliable truths to be had in the existence of a metaphysical mind. Such a mind can perhaps interact with a physical body, but it does not exist in the body, nor even in the same physical plane as the body. Cartesianism had been controversial for several years before 1656. René Descartes himself had lived in the Dutch Republic for some twenty years (1628–1649). His Discours de la méthode (1637) was originally published at Leiden, and his Principia philosophiae (1644) appeared from the presses at Amsterdam. In the 1630s and 1640s, Descartes's ideas gained a foothold at the Dutch universities.
Spinozism is the monist philosophical system of the Dutch-Jew philosopher Baruch Spinoza which defines "God" as a singular self-subsistent substance, with both matter and thought being attributes of such.
1670s Affect (philosophy)
Affect (affectus or adfectus in Latin) is a concept used in the philosophy of Spinoza and elaborated by Henri Bergson, Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari that places emphasis on bodily experience. The term "affect" is central to what has become known as the "affective turn" in the humanities and social sciences.
1907–1908 Intuitionism (philosophy of mathematics)
Mathematical intuitionism was founded by the Dutch mathematician and philosopher Luitzen Egbertus Jan Brouwer. In the philosophy of mathematics, intuitionism, or neointuitionism (opposed to preintuitionism), is an approach where mathematics is considered to be purely the result of the constructive mental activity of humans rather than the discovery of fundamental principles claimed to exist in an objective reality. That is, logic and mathematics are not considered analytic activities wherein deep properties of objective reality are revealed and applied but are instead considered the application of internally consistent methods used to realize more complex mental constructs, regardless of their possible independent existence in an objective reality.
1370s - 1390s Devotio Moderna
Devotio Moderna, or Modern Devotion, was a movement for religious reform, calling for apostolic renewal through the rediscovery of genuine pious practices such as humility, obedience and simplicity of life. It began in the late fourteenth-century, largely through the work of Gerard Groote, and flourished in the Low Countries and Germany in the fifteenth century, but came to an end with the Protestant Reformation. It is most known today through its influence on Thomas à Kempis, the author of The Imitation of Christ, a book which proved highly influential for centuries.
The Mennonites are a Christian group based around the church communities of Anabaptist denominations named after Menno Simons (1496–1561) of Friesland. Through his writings, Simons articulated and formalized the teachings of earlier Swiss founders. The teachings of the Mennonites were founded on their belief in both the mission and ministry of Jesus Christ, which they held to with great conviction despite persecution by the various Roman Catholic and Protestant states.
1571 Dutch Reformed Church
The Dutch Reformed Church (in Dutch: Nederlandse Hervormde Kerk or NHK) was a Reformed Christian denomination in the Netherlands. It developed during the Protestant Reformation, with its base in what became known as the Roman Catholic Church. It was founded in the 1570s and lasted until 2004, the year it merged with the Reformed Churches in the Netherlands and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in the Kingdom of the Netherlands to form the Protestant Church in the Netherlands.
Arminianism is based on the theological ideas of the Dutch Reformed theologian Jacobus Arminius (1560–1609) and his historic supporters known as the Remonstrants. His teachings held to the five solae of the Reformation, but they were distinct in some ways from particular teachings of Martin Luther, Zwingli, John Calvin, and other Protestant Reformers. Jacobus Arminius (Jacobus Hermanszoon) was a student of Beza (successor of Calvin) at the Theological University of Geneva.
In 1590 the Dutchmen Hans and Zacharias Janssen (father and son) invented the first compound microscope. It would have a single glass lens of short focal length for the objective, and another single glass lens for the eyepiece or ocular. A resident of Delft, Anton van Leeuwenhoek, effectively launched high-power microscopy using single-lens, simple microscopes. With these modest instruments he discovered the world of micro-organisms. Modern microscopes are far more complex, with multiple lens components in both objective and eyepiece assemblies. These multi-component lenses are designed to reduce aberrations, particularly chromatic aberration and spherical aberration. In modern microscopes the mirror is replaced by a lamp unit providing stable, controllable illumination.
Hans Lippershey created and disseminated the first practical telescope. Crude telescopes and spyglasses may have been created much earlier, but Lippershey is believed to be the first to apply for a patent for his design (beating out Jacob Metius by a few weeks) and make it available for general use in 1608. He failed to receive a patent but was handsomely rewarded by the Dutch government for copies of his design. A description of Lippershey's instrument quickly reached Galileo Galilei, who created a working design in 1609, with which he made the observations found in his Sidereus Nuncius of 1610.
1670s Van Leeuwenhoek microscope
Antonie van Leeuwenhoek created at least 25 microscopes, of differing types, of which only nine survive. His simple microscopes were made of silver or copper frames, holding hand-ground lenses. Those that have survived are capable of magnification up to 275 times. It is suspected that Van Leeuwenhoek possessed some microscopes that could magnify up to 500 times. Using his handcrafted microscopes, he was the first to observe and describe single-celled organisms, which he originally referred to as animalcules, and which now referred to as micro-organisms or microbes.
The pyrometer, invented by Pieter van Musschenbroek, is a temperature measuring device, which may consist of several different arrangements. A simple type of pyrometer uses a thermocouple placed either in the furnace or on the item to be measured. The voltage output of the thermocouple is read from a digital or analog meter calibrated in degrees Celsius (C) or Fahrenheit (F). There are many different types of thermocouple available, and these can be used to measure temperatures from −200 °C to above 1500 °C.
1745–1746 First capacitor (Leyden jar)
The Leyden jar was the original capacitor, developed by Pieter van Musschenbroek in the 18th century and used to conduct many early experiments in electricity.
The device was a glass jar coated inside and out with metal. The inner coating was connected to a rod that passed through the lid and ended in a metal ball. Typical designs consist of an electrode and a plate, each of which stores an opposite charge. These two elements are conductive and are separated by an insulator (e.g., the glass dielectric). The charge is stored at the surface of the elements, at the boundary with the dielectric.
1781 Eisinga Planetarium
The Eisinga Planetarium (Royal Eise Eisinga Planetarium) was built by Eise Eisinga in his home in Franeker, Friesland, Netherlands. It took Eisinga seven years to build his planetarium, which was completed in 1781. The orrery still exists and is the oldest still working planetarium in the world.
1860 Kipp's apparatus
Kipp's apparatus, also called Kipp generator, is an apparatus designed for preparation of small volumes of gases. It was invented around 1860 by the Dutch pharmacist Petrus Jacobus Kipp and widely used in chemical laboratories and for demonstrations in schools into the second half of the 20th century.
In optical microscopy many objects such as cell parts in protozoans, bacteria and sperm tails are essentially fully transparent unless stained (and therefore killed). The difference in densities and composition within these objects however often give rise to changes in the phase of light passing through them, hence they are sometimes called "phase objects". Using the phase-contrast technique makes these structures visible and allows their study with the specimen still alive. This phase contrast technique proved to be such an advancement in microscopy that Dutch physicist Frits Zernike was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1953.
1961 Magnetic horn
The magnetic horn (also known as the Van der Meer horn) is a high-current, pulsed focusing device, invented by the Dutch physicist Simon van der Meer in CERN, selected pions and focused them into a sharp beam. The original application of the magnetic horn was in the context of neutrino physics, where beams of pions have to be tightly focused. When the pions then decay into muons and neutrinos or antineutrinos, an equally well-focused neutrino beam is obtained. The muons were stopped in a wall of 3000 tons of iron and 1000 tons of concrete, leaving the neutrinos or antineutrinos to reach the Gargamelle bubble chamber.
Sports and Games
A golf-like game (kolf in Dutch) is recorded as taking place on 26 February 1297, in the Netherlands, in a city called Loenen aan de Vecht, where the Dutch played a game with a stick and leather ball. The winner was whoever hit the ball with the least number of strokes into a target several hundred yards away. Some scholars argue that this game of putting a small ball in a hole in the ground using golf clubs was also played in 17th-century Netherlands and that this predates the game in Scotland.
1400s–1600s Pre-modern figure skating
The Dutch played a significant role in the history of ice skating (including speed skating and figure skating). In fact, ice skating is probably the only sport to have its own saint. The first depiction of ice skating in a work of art was made in the 15th century. The picture, of Saint Lidwina, patron saint of ice skaters, falling on the ice was the first work of art to feature ice skating as a main theme. Another important aspect of the painting is a man seen in the background, who is skating on one leg. This means that the ice skates the man was wearing must have sharp edges similar to those found on modern ice skates. Until the 17th century, ice skating was mostly used for transportation. Some of the Stuarts (including King Charles II of England) who had fled to the Dutch Republic during the Cromwell Royal reign later returned to Britain, bringging with them the new sport. Upon his return to England in 1658, the King Charles II brought back with him two innovations in ice skating – a pair of iron skates and the Dutch roll. The Dutch roll was the first form of a gliding or skating motion made possible by the iron skate's two edges. However, speed skating was the focus of the Dutch and it was the English who developed modern figure skating.
1400s–1600s Speed skating
Ice speed skating, which had developed in the Netherlands in the 17th century, was given a boost by the innovations in skate construction. Speed skating, or speedskating, is a competitive form of ice skating in which the competitors race each other in traveling a certain distance on skates. Types of speed skating are long track speed skating, short track speed skating, and marathon speed skating. In the Olympic Games, long-track speed skating is usually referred to as just "speed skating", while short-track speed skating is known as "short track".
1600s Sport of sailing (yachting)
Sailing, also known as yachting, is a sport in which competitors race from point to point, or around a race course, in sail-powered vessels. Yachting refers to recreational sailing or boating, the specific act of sailing or using other water vessels for sporting purposes. The invention of sailing is prehistoric, but the racing of sailing boats (yachting) is believed to have started in the Netherlands some time in the 17th century. While living in the Dutch Republic, King Charles II of England fell in love with sailing and on his return to England in 1660, the Dutch gifted him with a 66-foot yacht he called Mary. The sport's popularity spread across the United Kingdom with the world's first yacht club being founded in Cork, Ireland in 1720.
Korfball (Korfbal in Dutch) is a mixed gender team sport, with similarities to netball and basketball. A team consists of eight players; four female and four male. A team also includes a coach. It was founded in the Netherlands in 1902 by Nico Broekhuysen.
1974 Cruyff Turn
The Cruijff Turn (also known as Cruyff Turn), one of the most famous dribbling tricks in the soccer today, was perfected by the Dutch football player Johan Cruijff who was immortalised in having this trick of evasion named after him. To make this move, the person would look to pass or cross the ball, however, instead of kicking it, he would drag the ball behind his planted foot with the inside of his other foot, turn through 180 degrees and accelerate away outside a bemused defender. The trick was famously employed by Cruijff in the 1974 FIFA World Cup, first being seen in the Netherlands' match against Sweden, and was soon widely copied by other players around the world.
1970s Total Football
The foundations for Total Football were laid by Englishman Jack Reynolds who was the manager of AFC Ajax from 1915–1925, 1928–1940, and 1945–1947. Rinus Michels, who played under Reynolds, later went on to become manager of Ajax himself and refined the concept into what is known today as "Total Football" (Totaalvoetbal in Dutch language), using it in his training for the Ajax Amsterdam squad and the Netherlands national football team in the 1970s. It was further refined by Stefan Kovacs after Michels left for FC Barcelona. Dutch playmaker Johan Cruyff was the system's most famous exponent. Due to Cruyff's style of play, he is still referred to as the total footballer.
FC Barcelona and the Spanish national football team play a style of football known as Tiki-taka that has its roots in Total Football. Tiki-taka (commonly spelled tiqui-taca in Spanish language) was founded by Johan Cruyff during his time as manager of FC Barcelona (1988–1996) and was successfully adopted by the all-conquering Spanish national team (2008–2012). Tiki-taka style differs from Total Football in that it focuses on ball movement rather than the positional interchange that was a cornerstone of the original Total Football philosophy.
Technology and Engineering
1373 First pound lock in Europe
The Netherlands takes great importance in the history of canal construction in that it revived the construction of canals during the 13th–14th century that had generally been discontinued since the fall of the Roman Empire. They also have contributed greatly in the development of canal construction technology, such as introducing the first flash locks in Europe. The first pound lock in Europe was built by the Dutch in 1373 at Vreeswijk, where a canal from Utrecht joins the river Lek.
Around 1620s, Cornelis Drebbel developed an automatic temperature control system for a furnace, motivated by his belief that base metals could be turned to gold by holding them at a precise constant temperature for long periods of time. He also used this temperature regulator in an incubator for hatching chickens.
1620s Feedback control system (automatic control)
Feedback control has been used for centuries to regulate engineered systems. In the 17th century, Cornelius Drebbel invented one of the earliest devices to use feedback, an chicken incubator that used a damper controlled by a thermometer to maintain a constant temperature.
The magic lantern is an optical device, early type of image projector developed in the 17th century. The history of the magic lantern starts around 1420 when something that looked like a magic lantern first appeared in a drawing. There has been some debate about who the original inventor of the magic lantern is, but the most widely accepted theory is that Christiaan Huygens developed the original device in the late 1650s.
1680 Gunpowder engine (forerunner to modern internal combustion engine)
Christiaan Huygens designs gunpowder to drive water pumps, to supply 3000 cubic meters of water/day for the Versailles palace gardens, essentially creating the first idea of a rudimentary internal combustion piston engine.
1680s Hollander beater
Hollander beater is a machine developed by the Dutch in 1680 to produce paper pulp from cellulose containing plant fibers. It replaced stamp mills for preparing pulp because the Hollander could produce in one day the same quantity of pulp it would take a stamp mill eight days to prepare.
1783 Gas lighting
A pentode is an electronic device having five active electrodes. The term most commonly applies to a three-grid vacuum tube (thermionic valve), which was invented by the Dutchman Bernhard D.H. Tellegen in 1926.
Philishave was the brand name for the electric shavers manufactured by the Philips Domestic Appliances and Personal Care unit of Philips (in the US, the Norelco name is used instead). The Philishave shaver was invented by Philips engineer Alexandre Horowitz, who used rotating cutters instead of the reciprocating cutters that had been used in previous electric shavers.
A gyrator is a passive, linear, lossless, two-port electrical network element invented in 1948 by Dutchman Bernard D. H. Tellegen as a hypothetical fifth linear element after the resistor, capacitor, inductor and ideal transformer.
Dutch company Gatsometer BV, founded by the 1950s rally driver Maurice Gatsonides, invented the first traffic enforcement camera. Gatsonides wished to better monitor his speed around the corners of a race track and came up with the device in order to improve his time around the circuit . The company developed the first radar for use with road traffic, and is the world's largest supplier of speed camera systems. Because of this, in some countries speed cameras are sometimes referred to as "Gatsos". They are also sometimes referred to as "photo radar", even though many of them do not use radar.
The first systems introduced in the late 1960s used film cameras to take their pictures. From the late 1990s, digital cameras began to be introduced. Digital cameras can be fitted with a modem or other electronic interface to transfer images to a central processing location automatically, so they have advantages over film cameras in speed of issuing fines, and operational monitoring. However, film-based systems still generally provide superior image quality in the variety of lighting conditions encountered on roads, and in some jurisdictions are required by the courts due to the ease with which digital images may be modified. New film-based systems are still being sold.
Variomatic is the stepless, fully automatic transmission of the Dutch car manufacturer DAF, originally developed by Hub van Doorne. The Variomatic was introduced by DAF in 1958 (DAF 600), also putting an automatic gear box in the Netherlands for the first time. It is also used in today's motorscooters. Variomatic was the first commercially successful continuously variable transmission (CVT).
1965 Red light camera
Red light camera is a traffic enforcement camera that captures an image of a vehicle which has entered an intersection against a red traffic light. By automatically photographing vehicles that run red lights, the camera produces evidence that assists authorities in their enforcement of traffic laws. Red light cameras were first developed in the Netherlands. The first red light camera system was introduced in 1965, using tubes stretched across the road to detect the violation and subsequently trigger the camera. One of the first developers of these red light camera systems was Dutch company Gatsometer BV. These cameras are used worldwide, in countries including Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, Singapore and the United States.
1968 Stochastic cooling
Stochastic cooling is a form of particle beam cooling. It is used in some particle accelerators and storage rings to control the emittance of the particle beams in the machine. This process uses the electrical signals that the individual charged particles generate in a feedback loop to reduce the tendency of individual particles to move away from the other particles in the beam. This technique was invented and applied at the Intersecting Storage Rings, and later the Super Proton Synchrotron, at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland by the Dutch physicist Simon van der Meer. By increasing the particle density to close to the required energy, this technique improved the beam quality and, inter alia, brought the discovery of the W and Z bosons within reach.
1980 Clap skate
The clap skate (also called clapskates, slap skates, slapskates) is a type of ice skate used in speed skating. Clap skates were developed at the Faculty of Human Movement Sciences of the Vrije Universiteit of Amsterdam, led by Gerrit Jan van Ingen Schenau, although the idea of a clap skate is much older. Gerrit Jan van Ingen Schenau, who started work on a hinged speed skate in 1979, created his first prototype in 1980 and finished his PhD thesis on the subject in 1981 on the premise that a skater would benefit from the extended movement with the skate on the ice, allowing the calf muscles to longer partake in the skate movement.
1300s–1400s Ice skate improvements
In the 14th century, the Dutch started using wooden platform skates with flat iron bottom runners. The skates were attached to the skater's shoes with leather straps and poles were used to propel the skater. Around 1500, the Dutch shifted to a narrow metal double edged blade, so the skater could now push and glide with his feet eliminating the need for a pole.
Originally defined as a light, fast sailing vessel used by the Dutch navy to pursue pirates and other transgressors around and into the shallow waters of the Low Countries. Later, yachts came to be perceived as luxury, or recreational vessels.
Fluyt, a type of sailing vessel originally designed as a dedicated cargo vessel. Originating from the Netherlands in the 16th century, the vessel was designed to facilitate transoceanic delivery with the maximum of space and crew efficiency. The inexpensive ship, which could be built in large numbers. This ship class was credited in enhancing Dutch competitiveness in international trade, and was widely employed by the Dutch East India Company in the 17th and 18th centuries. The fluyt was a significant factor in the 17th century rise of the Dutch seaborne empire.
1592 Wind-powered sawmill
Cornelis Corneliszoon (Born 1550 in Uitgeest – died 1600) was the inventor of the wind powered sawmill. Prior to the invention of sawmills, boards were rived and planed, or more often sawn by two men with a whipsaw using saddleblocks to hold the log and a pit for the pitman who worked below and got the benefit of the sawdust in his eyes. Sawing was slow and required strong and enduring men. The topsawer had to be the stronger of the two because the saw was pulled in turn by each man, and the lower had the advantage of gravity. The topsawyer also had to guide the saw so the board was of even thickness. This was often done by following a chalkline.
Early sawmills simply adapted the whipsaw to mechanical power, generally driven by a water wheel to speed up the process. The circular motion of the wheel was changed to back-and-forth motion of the saw blade by a pitman thus introducing a term used in many mechanical applications. A pitman is similar to a crankshaft but used in reverse. A crankshaft converts back-and-forth motion to circular motion.
Generally only the saw was powered and the logs had to be loaded and moved by hand. An early improvement was the development of a movable carriage, also water powered, to steadily move the log through the saw blade.
1600 Land yacht
Wind chariot or land yacht (Zeilwagen) designed by Dutch-Flemish mathematician & engineer Simon Stevin for Prince Maurice of Orange. Land yacht, a carriage with sails, of which a little model had been preserved in Scheveningen until 2012. The carriage itself had been lost long before. Around the year 1600, Simon Stevin with Prince Maurice of Orange and twenty-six others, made use of it on the beach between Scheveningen and Petten. The carriage was propelled solely by the force of wind, and acquired a speed which exceeded that of horses.
Cornelius Drebbel, was the inventor of the first navigable submarine, while working for the Royal Navy. Using William Bourne's design from 1578, he manufactured a steerable submarine with a leather-covered wooden frame. Between 1620 and 1624 Drebbel successfully built and tested two more submarines, each one bigger than the last. The final (third) model had 6 oars and could carry 16 passengers. This model was demonstrated to King James I in person and several thousand Londoners. The submarine stayed submerged for three hours and could travel from Westminster to Greenwich and back, cruising at a depth of from 12 to 15 feet (4 to 5 metres). This submarine was tested many times in the Thames, but never used in combat.
1903 Four-wheel drive with internal combustion engine
In 1903, the Dutch car manufacturer Spyker introduces the first four-wheel drive car, as well as hill-climb racer, with internal combustion engine, the Spyker 60 H.P..
1574 Oldest national anthem (Het Wilhelmus)
Wilhelmus van Nassouwe (Het Wilhelmus) is the national anthem of the Netherlands and is the oldest national anthem in the world. The anthem was first written down in 1574 (during the Dutch Revolt). The Japanese anthem, Kimigayo, has the oldest (9th century) lyrics, but a melody was only added in the late 19th century, making it a poem rather than an anthem for most of its lifespan. Although the Wilhelmus was not officially recognised as the Dutch national anthem until 1932, it has always been popular with parts of the Dutch population and resurfaced on several occasions in the course of Dutch history before gaining its present status.
1592 Columba (constellation)
Columba is a small, faint constellation created in the late sixteenth century. Its name is Latin for dove. It is located just south of Canis Major and Lepus. Columba was created by Dutch astronomer Petrus Plancius in 1592 in order to differentiate the 'unformed stars' of the large constellation Canis Major. Plancius first depicted Columba on the small celestial planispheres of his large wall map of 1592. It is also shown on his smaller world map of 1594 and on early Dutch celestial globes.
1597 Novaya Zemlya effect
The first person to record the phenomenon was Gerrit de Veer, a member of Willem Barentsz' ill-fated third expedition into the polar region. Novaya Zemlya, the archipelago where de Veer first observed the phenomenon, lends its name to the effect.
1597–1598 Apus (southern constellation)
Apus is a faint constellation in the southern sky, first defined in the late 16th century. Its name means "no feet" in Greek, and it represents a bird-of-paradise (which were once believed to lack feet). Apus was one of twelve constellations created by Petrus Plancius from the observations of Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman and it first appeared on a 35 cm diameter celestial globe published in 1597 (or 1598) in Amsterdam by Plancius with Jodocus Hondius.
1597–1598 Chamaeleon (constellation)
Chamaeleon is a small constellation in the southern sky. It is named after the chameleon, a kind of lizard. It was first defined in the 16th century. It was one of many constellations created by European explorers in the 15th and 16th centuries out of unfamiliar Southern Hemisphere stars. Chamaeleon was one of twelve constellations created by Petrus Plancius from the observations of Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman.
1597–1598 Dorado (constellation)
Dorado, a constellation in the southern sky, was named in the late 16th century and is now one of the 88 modern constellations. Dorado has been represented historically as a dolphinfish and a swordfish. It was one of twelve constellations created by Petrus Plancius from the observations of Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman.
1597–1598 Grus (constellation)
Grus is a constellation in the southern sky. Its name is Latin for the crane, a species of bird. The stars that form Grus were originally considered part of Piscis Austrinus (the southern fish). The stars were first defined as a separate constellation by Petrus Plancius, who created twelve new constellations based on the observations of Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman.
1597–1598 Hydrus (southern constellation)
Hydrus is a small constellation in the southern sky, created in the late sixteenth century. Its name means "male water snake". Hydrus was one of twelve constellations created by Petrus Plancius from the observations of Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman.
1597–1598 Indus (constellation)
Created in the late sixteenth century, Indus represents an Indian, a word that could refer at the time to any native of Asia or the Americas. The constellation was one of twelve created by Petrus Plancius from the observations of Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman.
1597–1598 Musca (southern constellation)
Musca is one of the minor southern constellations. The constellation was one of twelve constellations created by Petrus Plancius from the observations of Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman and it first appeared on a 35-cm diameter celestial globe published in 1597 (or 1598) in Amsterdam by Petrus Plancius and Jodocus Hondius. The first depiction of this constellation in a celestial atlas was in Johann Bayer's Uranometria of 1603.
1597–1598 Pavo (constellation)
Pavo is a constellation in the southern sky. Its name is Latin for peacock. It is one of twelve constellations created by Petrus Plancius from the observations of Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman.
1597–1598 Phoenix (constellation)
Phoenix is a minor constellation in the southern sky. It was after the mythical phoenix. Phoenix was the largest of the twelve constellations established by Petrus Plancius from the observations of Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman.
1597–1598 Triangulum Australe (southern constellation)
Triangulum Australe is a small constellation in the far southern celestial hemisphere. Its name is Latin for "the southern triangle", which distinguishes it from Triangulum in the northern sky and is derived from the almost equilateral pattern of its three brightest stars. It was first depicted on a celestial globe as Triangulus Antarcticus by Petrus Plancius in 1589, and later with more accuracy and its current name by Johann Bayer in his 1603 Uranometria.
1597–1598 Tucana (southern constellation)
Tucana is a constellation of stars in the southern sky, created in the late sixteenth century. Its name is Latin for the toucan, a South American bird. The constellation was one of twelve created by Petrus Plancius from the observations of Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman.
1597–1598 Volans (southern constellation)
Volans is a constellation in the southern sky. It represents a flying fish; its name is a shortened form of its original name, Piscis Volans. It was one of twelve constellations created by Petrus Plancius from the observations of Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser and Frederick de Houtman in the late sixteenth century.
1612–1613 Camelopardalis (constellation)
Camelopardalis was created by Petrus Plancius in 1613 to represent the animal Rebecca rode to marry Isaac in the Bible. One year later, Jakob Bartsch featured it in his atlas. Johannes Hevelius gave it the official name of "Camelopardus" or "Camelopardalis" because he saw the constellation's many faint stars as the spots of a giraffe.
1612–1613 Monoceros (constellation)
Monoceros is a relatively modern constellation. Its first certain appearance was on a globe created by the Dutch cartographer Petrus Plancius in 1612 or 1613 and it was later charted by Jakob Bartsch as Unicornus in his star chart of 1624.
1655 Rings of Saturn
In 1655, Christiaan Huygens became the first person to suggest that Saturn was surrounded by a ring, after Galileo's much less advanced telescope had failed to show rings. Galileo had reported the anomaly as possibly 3 planets instead of one.
1655 Titan (Saturn's moon)
1932 Evidence of dark matter
In 1932, Dutch astronomer Jan Oort became the first person to discover evidence of dark matter. The existence of dark matter was proposed when Jan Oort measured the motions of nearby stars in the Milky Way relative to the galactic plane. He found that the mass of the galactic plane must be more than the mass of the material that can be seen. A year later (1933), Fritz Zwicky examined the dynamics of clusters of galaxies and found their movements similarly perplexing.
1948 Miranda (Uranus's moon)
1949 Nereid (Neptune's moon)
Nereid, also known as Neptune II, is the third-largest moon of Neptune and was the second moon of Neptune to be discovered. Nereid was discovered on 1 May 1949, by Gerard Kuiper, on photographic plates taken with the 82-inch telescope at the McDonald Observatory.
1660s Function of the Fallopian tubes
Dutch physician & anatomist Regnier de Graaf may have been the first to understand the reproductive function of the Fallopian tube, described the hydrosalpinx, linking its development to female infertility. Regnier de Graaf recognized pathologic conditions of the tubes. He was aware of tubal pregnancies, and he surmised that the mammalian egg traveled from the ovary to the uterus through the Fallopian tube.
1672 Development of ovarian follicles (Graafian follicles)
In his De Mulierum Organis Generatione Inservientibus (1672), Dutch physician & anatomist Regnier de Graaf provided the first thorough description of the female gonad and established that it produced the ovum. De Graaf used the terminology vesicle or egg (ovum) for what now called the ovarian follicle. Because the fluid-filled ovarian vesicles had been observed previously by others, including Andreas Vesalius and Falloppio, De Graaf did not claim priority to their discovery. He himself pointed out that he was not the first to describe them, but described their development. De Graaf was the first to observe changes in the ovary before and after mating and describe the corpus luteum. From the observation of pregnancy in rabbits, he concluded that the follicle contained the oocyte. The mature stage of the ovarian follicle is called the Graafian follicle in his honour, although others, including Fallopius, had noticed the follicles previously but failed to recognize its reproductive significance.
1670s Birth of Microbiology
Antonie van Leeuwenhoek is often considered to be the father of microbiology. While Robert Hooke is cited as the first to record microscopic observation of the fruiting bodies of molds, in 1665. But the first observation of microbes using a microscope is generally credited to Antonie van Leeuwenhoek. In 1670s, Antonie van Leeuwenhoek observed and researched bacteria and other microorganisms, using a single-lens microscope of his own design.
Photosynthesis is an important biochemical process in which plants, algae, and some bacteria convert the energy of sunlight to chemical energy. The process was discovered by Jan Ingenhousz in 1779. The chemical energy is used to drive synthetic reactions such as the formation of sugars or the fixation of nitrogen into amino acids, the building blocks for protein synthesis. Ultimately, nearly all living things depend on energy produced from photosynthesis for their nourishment, making it vital to life on Earth. It is also responsible for producing the oxygen that makes up a large portion of the Earth's atmosphere. Organisms that produce energy through photosynthesis are called photoautotrophs. Plants are the most visible representatives of photoautotrophs, but bacteria and algae also contribute to the conversion of free energy into usable energy.
1779 Plant respiration
Plant respiration was also discovered by Jan Ingenhousz in 1779.
1898 Birth of Virology
Martinus Beijerinck is considered one of the founders of virology. In 1898, he published results on the filtration experiments demonstrating that tobacco mosaic disease is caused by an infectious agent smaller than a bacterium. His results were in accordance with the similar observation made by Dmitri Ivanovsky in 1892. Like Ivanovsky before him and Adolf Mayer, predecessor at Wageningen, Beijerinck could not culture the filterable infectious agent, however he concluded that the agent can replicate and multiply in living plants. He named the new pathogen virus to indicate its non-bacterial nature and this discovery is considered to be the beginning of virology.
1600s Pneumatic chemistry (concept of gas)
1885 Lobry de Bruyn–van Ekenstein transformation
In carbohydrate chemistry, the Lobry de Bruyn–van Ekenstein transformation is the base or acid catalyzed transformation of an aldose into the ketose isomer or vice versa, with a tautomeric enediol as reaction intermediate. The Lobry de Bruyn–van Ekenstein transformation is relevant for the industrial production of certain ketoses and was discovered in 1885 by Cornelis Adriaan Lobry van Troostenburg de Bruyn and Willem Alberda van Ekenstein.
1919 Prins reaction
The Prins reaction is an organic reaction consisting of an electrophilic addition of an aldehyde or ketone to an alkene or alkyne followed by capture of a nucleophile. Dutch chemist Hendrik Jacobus Prins discovered two new organic reactions, both nowadays carrying the name Prins reaction. The first one, the addition of polyhalogen compounds to olefins, was found during the doctoral research of Prins, the second one, on the acid-catalyzed addition of aldehydes to olefinic compounds, became of much industrial relevance.
1923 Hafnium (chemical element)
The Dutch physicist Dirk Coster and the Hungarian-Swedish chemist George de Hevesy co-discovered Hafnium (Hf) in 1923, by means of X-ray spectroscopic analysis of zirconium ore. Hafnium' is named after Hafnia', the Latin name for Copenhagen (Denmark), where it was discovered.
1925 Crystal bar process
The crystal bar process (also known as iodide process or the van Arkel–de Boer process) was developed by Dutch chemists Anton Eduard van Arkel and Jan Hendrik de Boer in 1925. This process was the first industrial process for the commercial production of pure ductile metallic zirconium. It is used in the production of small quantities of ultra-pure titanium and zirconium.
1889 Concept of the Pangene (gene)
In 1889, the Dutch botanist Hugo de Vries published his book Intracellular Pangenesis, in which, based on a modified version of Charles Darwin's theory of Pangenesis of 1868, he postulated that different characters have different hereditary carriers. He specifically postulated that inheritance of specific traits in organisms comes in particles. He called these units pangenes, a term 20 years later (1909) to be shortened to genes by the Danish botanist Wilhelm Johannsen.
1900 Rediscovery of Genetics
1900 marked the "rediscovery of Mendelian genetics". The significance of Gregor Mendel's work was not understood until early in the twentieth century, after his death, when his research was re-discovered by other scientists working on similar problems: Hugo de Vries, Carl Correns and Erich von Tschermak. Dutch botanist Hugo de Vries rediscovered (independently with Carl Correns and Erich von Tschermak) the laws of heredity in the 1890s while unaware of Gregor Mendel's work, for introducing the term "mutation", and for developing a mutation theory of evolution. They all worked independently on different plant hybrids, and came to the same conclusions about rules of inheritance as Mendel.
1897 Bushveld Igneous Complex
The Bushveld Igneous Complex (or BIC) is a large layered igneous intrusion within the Earth's crust which has been tilted and eroded and now outcrops around what appears to be the edge of a great geological basin, the Transvaal Basin. Located in South Africa, the BIC contains some of the richest ore deposits on Earth. The complex contains the world's largest reserves of platinum group metals (PGMs), platinum, palladium, osmium, iridium, rhodium, and ruthenium, along with vast quantities of iron, tin, chromium, titanium and vanadium. The site was discovered around 1897 by Gustaaf Molengraaff, a Dutch geologist.
1637 Analytic geometry
René Descartes (1596–1650) was born in France but spent most of his adult life in the Dutch Republic. As Bertrand Russell noted in his A History of Western Philosophy (1945): "He lived in Holland for twenty years (1629–49), except for a few brief visits to France and one to England, all on business....". In 1637, Descartes published his work on the methods of science, Discours de la méthode in Leiden. One of the three appendices to his work was La Géométrie, in which he outlined a method to connect the expressions of algebra with the diagrams of geometry. It combined both algebra and geometry under one specialty — algebraic geometry, called analytic geometry, which involves reducing geometry to a form of arithmetic and algebra and translating geometric shapes into algebraic equations.
1637 Cartesian coordinate system
Descartes originally published his Discours de la méthode in Leiden. Later, it was translated into Latin and published in 1656 in Amsterdam. The book was intended as an introduction to three works Dioptrique, Météores and Géométrie. La Géométrie contains Descartes' first introduction of the Cartesian coordinate system.
1911 Brouwer fixed-point theorem
1659 Centrifugal force
1665 Coupled oscillation
Christiaan Huygens observed that two of his pendulum clocks mounted next to each other on the same support often become synchronized, swinging in opposite directions. In 1665, He reported the results by letter to the Royal Society of London and it is referred to it as "an odd kind of sympathy" in the Society's minutes. This may be the first published observation of what is now called coupled oscillations. In the 20th century, coupled oscillators took on great practical importance because of two discoveries: lasers, in which different atoms give off light waves that all oscillate in unison, and superconductors, in which pairs of electrons oscillate in synchrony, allowing electricity to flow with almost no resistance. Coupled oscillators are even more ubiquitous in nature, showing up, for example, in the synchronized flashing of fireflies and chirping of crickets, and in the pacemaker cells that regulate heartbeats.
Flemish anatomist and physician Andreas Vesalius is often referred to as the founder of modern human anatomy with the publication of the seven-volume De humani corporis fabrica (On the Structure of the Human Body) in 1543.
1679 Crystals in gouty tophi
In 1679, Antonie van Leeuwenhoek used one of his microscopes to assess tophaceous material and found that gouty tophi consist of aggregates of needle-shaped crystals, and not globules of chalk as was believed until then.
1724 Boerhaave syndrome
Boerhaave syndrome (also known as spontaneous esophageal perforation or esophageal rupture) refers to an oesophageal rupture secondary to forceful vomiting. Originally described in 1724 by Dutch physician/botanist Hermann Boerhaave, it is a rare condition with high mortality. The syndrome was described after the case of a Dutch admiral Baron Jan von Wassenaer who died of the condition.
1994 Factor V Leiden
Factor V Leiden is an inherited disorder of blood clotting. It is a variant of human factor V that causes a hypercoagulability disorder. It is named after the city Leiden (Netherlands), where it was first identified in Leiden by Professor R. Bertina et al. in 1994.
1658 Red blood cells (Erythrocytes)
1674 Infusoria (Protist)
Infusoria is a collective term for minute aquatic creatures like ciliate, euglena, paramecium, protozoa and unicellular algae that exist in freshwater pond water. However, in formal classification microorganism called infusoria belongs to Kingdom Animalia, Phylum Protozoa, Class Ciliates (Infusoria).They were first discovered by Antoni van Leeuwenhoek.
The first bacteria were observed by Anton van Leeuwenhoek in 1676 using a single-lens microscope of his own design. The creatures he saw were described as small creatures. The name bacterium was introduced much later, by Ehrenberg in 1828, derived from the Greek word βακτηριον meaning "small stick". Because of the difficulty in describing individual bacteria and the importance of their discovery to fields such as medicine, biochemistry and geochemistry, the history of bacteria is generally described as the history of microbiology.
A spermatozoon or spermatozoon (pl. spermatozoa), from the ancient Greek σπερμα (seed) and ζων (alive) and more commonly known as a sperm cell, is the haploid cell that is the male gamete. It joins an ovum to form a zygote. A zygote can grow into a new organism, such as a human being. Sperm cells contribute half of the genetic information to the diploid offspring. In mammals, the sex of the offspring is determined by the sperm cells: a spermatozoon bearing a Y chromosome will lead to a male (XY) offspring, while one bearing an X chromosome will lead to a female (XX) offspring ( the ovum always provides an X chromosome). Sperm cells were first observed by a student of Antoni van Leeuwenhoek in 1677. Leeuwenhoek pictured sperm cells with great accuracy.
Volvox is a genus of chlorophytes, a type of green algae. It forms spherical colonies of up to 50,000 cells. They live in a variety of freshwater habitats, and were first reported by Antonie van Leeuwenhoek in 1700.
1885 Biological nitrogen fixation
1895 Sulfate-reducing bacteria
Dutch microbiologist Martinus Beijerinck discovered the phenomenon of bacterial sulfate reduction, a form of anaerobic respiration. He learned bacteria could use sulfate as a terminal electron acceptor, instead of oxygen. Spirillum desulfuricans (Spirillum), the first known sulfate-reducing bacterium, was isolated and described by Beijerinck.
1898 Concept of the Virus (Tobacco mosaic virus)
In 1898, the Dutch microbiologist Martinus Beijerinck first coined the term of "virus" to indicate that the causal agent of tobacco mosaic disease was of non-bacterial nature. Beijerinck discovered what is now known as the tobacco mosaic virus. He observed that the agent multiplied only in cells that were dividing and he called it a contagium vivum fluidum (contagious living fluid). Martinus Beijerinck's discovery is considered to be the beginning of virology.
1904 Enrichment culture
Martinus Beijerinck is credited with developing the first enrichment culture, a fundamental method of studying microbes from the environment.
1891 Java Man (Homo erectus erectus)
Java Man (Homo erectus erectus) is the name given to hominid fossils discovered in 1891 at Trinil – Ngawi Regency on the banks of the Solo River in East Java, Indonesia, one of the first known specimens of Homo erectus. Its discoverer, Dutch paleontologist Eugène Dubois, gave it the scientific name Pithecanthropus erectus, a name derived from Greek and Latin roots meaning upright ape-man.
1678 Wave theory of light
Christiaan Huygens is remembered especially for his wave theory of light, which he first communicated in 1678 to France's Royal Académie des sciences and which he published in 1690 in his Treatise on light. His argument that light consists of waves now known as the Huygens–Fresnel principle, which two centuries later became instrumental in the understanding of wave-particle duality. The interference experiments of Thomas Young vindicated Huygens' s wave theory in 1801.
1690 Huygens' principle
In his Traité de la Lumiere, Christiaan Huygens showed how Snell's law of sines could be explained by, or derived from, the wave nature of light, using what we have come to call the Huygens–Fresnel principle.
1738 Bernoulli's principle
Bernoulli's principle was discovered by the Dutch-Swiss mathematician and physicist Daniel Bernoulli and named after him.
1785 Brownian motion
1857 Buys Ballot's law
The law takes its name from the Dutch meteorologist C. H. D. Buys Ballot, who published it in the Comptes Rendus, November 1857. While William Ferrel theorized this first in 1856, Buys Ballot was the first to provide an empirical validation.
1873 Van der Waals equation of state
In 1873, Johannes Diderik van der Waals introduced the first equation of state derived by the assumption of a finite volume occupied by the constituent molecules. His new formula revolutionized the study of equations of state, and was most famously continued via the Redlich-Kwong equation of state and the Soave modification of Redlich–Kwong. Except at higher pressures, the real gases do not obey Van der Waals equation in all ranges of pressures and temperatures. Despite of its limitations, the Van der Waal equation has a historical importance because it was the first attempt to model the behaviour of real gases.
1873 Van der Waals forces
The van der Waals forces named after the Dutch physicist Johannes van der Waals, who first described them in 1873. Van der Waals noted the non-ideality of gases and attributed it to the existence of molecular or atomic interactions. They are forces which are developed between the atoms inside molecules and keep them together.
1880 Law of corresponding states
The law of corresponding states was first suggested and formulated by Johannes Diderik van der Waals in 1880. This showed that the van der Waals equation of state can be expressed as a simple function of the critical pressure, critical volume, and critical temperature. This general form is applicable to all substances. The compound-specific constants a and b in the original equation are replaced by universal (compound-independent) quantities. It was this law which served as a guide during experiments which ultimately led to the liquefaction of hydrogen by James Dewar in 1898 and of helium by Heike Kamerlingh Onnes in 1908.
1892 Lorentz force
1896 Zeeman effect
The physical effect discovered by Dutch physicist Pieter Zeeman and named after him.
1908 Liquid helium
Physical phenomena discovered by Dutch physicist Heike Kamerlingh Onnes.
1920 Van der Pol oscillator
In dynamical systems, the Van der Pol oscillator is a non-conservative oscillator with non-linear damping. It was originally proposed by the Dutch physicist Balthasar van der Pol while he was working at Philips in 1920. Van der Pol studied a differential equation that describes the circuit of a vacuum tube. It has been used to model other phenomenon such as the human heartbeat by his colleague, Jan van der Mark.
1925 Electron spin
1926 Solid helium
1930 De Haas–van Alphen effect
The de Haas–van Alphen effect, often abbreviated to dHvA, is a quantum mechanical effect in which the magnetic moment of a pure metal crystal oscillates as the intensity of an applied magnetic field B is increased. It was discovered in 1930 by Wander Johannes de Haas and his student P. M. van Alphen.
1948 Casimir effect
In quantum field theory, the Casimir effect and the Casimir–Polder force are physical forces arising from a quantized field. Dutch physicists Hendrik Casimir and Dirk Polder at Philips Research Labs proposed the existence of a force between two polarizable atoms and between such an atom and a conducting plate in 1947, and, after a conversation with Niels Bohr who suggested it had something to do with zero-point energy, Casimir alone formulated the theory predicting a force between neutral conducting plates in 1948; the former is called the Casimir–Polder force while the latter is the Casimir effect in the narrow sense.
1952 Tellegen's theorem
Tellegen's theorem is one of the most powerful theorems in network theory. Most of the energy distribution theorems and extremum principles in network theory can be derived from it. It was published in 1952 by Bernard Tellegen. Fundamentally, Tellegen's theorem gives a simple relation between magnitudes that satisfy Kirchhoff's laws of electrical circuit theory.
1594 Orange Islands
During his first journey in 1594, Dutch explorer Willem Barentsz discovered the Orange Islands.
1596 Bear Island
1596 Svalbard (archipelago)
The Dutch explorer Willem Barentsz made the first indisputable discovery of Svalbard in 1596, in an attempt to find the Northern Sea Route. The name Spitsbergen, meaning "pointed mountains" (from the Dutch spits – pointed, bergen – mountains), was at first applied to both the main island and the archipelago as a whole.
1600 Falkland Islands
The first reliable sighting is usually attributed to the Dutch explorer Sebald de Weert in 1600, who named the archipelago the Sebald Islands, a name they bore on Dutch maps into the 19th century.
1606 Pennefather River, Cape York Peninsula, Gulf of Carpentaria, Northern Australia (Willem Janszoon's voyage)
The first undisputed sighting of Australia by a European was made on 26 February 1606. The Dutch vessel Duyfken, captained by Willem Janszoon, followed the coast of New Guinea, missed Torres Strait, and explored perhaps 350 km of western side of Cape York, in the Gulf of Carpentaria, believing the land was still part of New Guinea. The Dutch made one landing, but were promptly attacked by Aborigines and subsequently abandoned further exploration.
The area that is now Manhattan was long inhabited by the Lenape Indians. In 1524, Florentine explorer Giovanni da Verrazzano – sailing in service of the king Francis I of France – was the first European to visit the area that would become New York City. It was not until the voyage of Henry Hudson, an Englishman who worked for the Dutch East India Company, that the area was mapped.
1609 Hudson Valley
At the time of the arrival of the first Europeans in the 17th century, the area of Hudson Valley was inhabited primarily by the Algonquian-speaking Mahican and Munsee Native American people, known collectively as River Indians. The first Dutch settlement was in the 1610s with the establishment of Fort Nassau, a trading post (factorij) south of modern-day Albany, with the purpose of exchanging European goods for beaver pelts. Fort Nassau was later replaced by Fort Orange. During the rest of the 17th century, the Hudson Valley formed the heart of the New Netherland colony operations, with the New Amsterdam settlement on Manhattan serving as a post for supplies and defense of the upriver operations.
1610–1611 Brouwer Route
The Brouwer Route was a route for sailing from the Cape of Good Hope to Java. The Route took ships south from the Cape into the Roaring Forties, then east across the Indian Ocean, before turning northwest for Java. Thus it took advantage of the strong westerly winds for which the Roaring Forties are named, greatly increasing travel speed. It was devised by the Dutch sea explorer Hendrik Brouwer in 1611, and found to halve the duration of the journey from Europe to Java, compared to the previous Arab and Portuguese monsoon route, which involved following the coast of East Africa northwards, sailing through the Mozambique Channel and then across the Indian Ocean, sometimes via India. The Brouwer Route played a major role in the discovery of the west coast of Australia, and the very large numbers of ships that were wrecked along that coast.
1614 Jan Mayen (island)
After unconfirmed reports of Dutch discovery as early as 1611, the island was named after Dutchman Jan Jacobszoon May van Schellinkhout who visited the island in July 1614. As locations of these islands were kept secret by the whalers, Jan Mayen only got its current name in 1620.
1614 Hell Gate, East River, New York
The name "Hell Gate" is a corruption of the Dutch phrase Hellegat, which could mean either "hell's hole" or "bright gate/passage", which was originally applied to the entirety of the East River. The strait was described in the journals of Dutch explorer Adriaen Block, who is the first European known to have navigated the strait, during his 1614 voyage aboard the Onrust.
1614 Long Island Sound
The first European to record the existence of Long Island Sound was the Dutch explorer Adriaen Block, who entered the sound from the East River in 1614.
1614 Connecticut River
The first European to see the Connecticut River was the Dutch explorer Adriaen Block in 1614.
1614 Fishers Island, New York
Fishers Island was called Munnawtawkit by the Native American Pequot nation. Adriaen Block, the first recorded European visitor, named it Visher's Island in 1614, after one of his companions. For the next 25 years, it remained a wilderness, visited occasionally by Dutch traders.
1615 Staten Island
1616 Cape Horn
On 29 January 1616, the Dutch ship Eendracht with explorers Jacob le Maire and Willem Schouten sighted land they called Cape Horn, after the city of Hoorn in Holland. Aboard the Eendracht was the crew of the recently wrecked ship called Hoorn.
1616 Hoorn Islands
1616 New Ireland (island)
1616 Schouten Islands, Indonesia
1616 Schouten Islands, Papua New Guinea
1616 Dirk Hartog Island, Shark Bay, Western Australia
Hendrik Brouwer's discovery that sailing east from the Cape of Good Hope until land was sighted, and then sailing north along the west coast of Australia was a much quicker route than around the coast of the Indian Ocean made Dutch landfalls on the west coast inevitable. The first such landfall was in 1616, when Dirk Hartog landed at Cape Inscription on what is now known as Dirk Hartog Island, off the coast of Western Australia, and left behind an inscription on a pewter plate. This plate may now be seen in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.
1619 Houtman Abrolhos, Western Australia
The first sighting of the Houtman Abrolhos by Europeans was by the Dutch VOC ships Dordrecht and Amsterdam in 1619, only three years after Dirk Hartog made the first authenticated sighting of what is now Western Australia, and only 13 years after the first authenticated voyage to Australia, that of the Duyfken in 1606. Discovery of the islands was credited to Frederick de Houtman, Captain-General of the Dordrecht, as it was Houtman who later wrote of the discovery in a letter to the directors of the Dutch East India Company.
1623 Gulf of Carpentaria, Northern Australia
The first known European explorer to visit the region was the Dutch Willem Janszoon (also known as Willem Jansz) in his 1606 voyage. His fellow countryman, Jan Carstenszoon (also known as Jan Carstensz), visited in 1623 and named the gulf in honour of Pieter de Carpentier, at that time the Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies. Abel Tasman also explored the coast in 1644.
1623 Staaten River, Cape York Peninsula, Northern Australia
The Staaten River is a river in the Cape York Peninsula, Australia that rises more than 200 km to the west of Cairns and empties into the Gulf of Carpentaria. The river was first named by Dutch sea explorer Jan Carstenszoon (also known as Jan Carstensz) in 1623.
1623 Arnhem Land, Gulf of Carpentaria, Northern Australia
In 1623 Dutch East India Company captain Willem van Colster sailed into the Gulf of Carpentaria and Cape Arnhem is named after his ship, the Arnhem, which itself was named after the city of Arnhem in the Netherlands.
1623 Groote Eylandt, Gulf of Carpentaria, Northern Australia
Groote Eylandt was first sighted by Europeans in 1623, by the Dutch ship Arnhem, under Willem van Coolsteerdt. However, it was not until 1644, when Abel Tasman arrived, that the island was given a European name. Its name is Dutch for "Large Island" in an archaic spelling. The modern Dutch spelling is Groot Eiland.
1624 Hermite Islands
In February 1624, Dutch admiral Jacques l'Hermite discovered the Hermite Islands at Cape Horn.
1627 Southern Australia coast (from Cape Leeuwin to Ceduna)
1627 St Francis Island, Nuyts Archipelago, South Australia
St Francis Island (originally in Dutch: Eyland St. François) is an island on the south coast of South Australia near Ceduna. It is part of the Isles of Saint Francis conservation park. It was one of the first parts of South Australia to be discovered and named by Europeans, along with St Peter Island, mapped by François Thijssen in 1627. It named by Thijssen after his patron saint. The island is part of the Nuyts Archipelago Important Bird Area (IBA), so identified by BirdLife International because it supports over 1% of the world populations of Short-tailed Shearwaters, White-faced Storm-Petrels and Pied Oystercatchers.
1627 St Peter Island, Nuyts Archipelago, South Australia
St Peter Island is an island on the south coast of South Australia near Ceduna to the south of Denial Bay. It is the second largest island in South Australia and about 13 km long. It was one of the first parts of South Australia to be discovered and named by Europeans, along with St Francis Island, mapped by François Thijssen in 1627. The island is part of the Nuyts Archipelago Important Bird Area (IBA). It lies across the Yatala Channel from the separate Tourville and Murat Bays Important Bird Area, just west of Ceduna on the mainland. It was named in 1627 by Thijssen after Pieter Nuyts' patron saint.
1629 West Wallabi Island & East Wallabi Island, Wallabi Group, Houtman Abrolhos, Western Australia
West Wallabi Island and East Wallabi Island played an important role in the story of the Batavia shipwreck and massacre. Following the shipwreck in 1629, a group of soldiers under the command of Wiebbe Hayes were put ashore on West Wallabi Island to search for water. A group of mutineers who took control of the other survivors left them there in the hope that they would starve or die of thirst. However the soldiers discovered that they could wade to East Wallabi Island, where there was a fresh water spring. Furthermore, West and East Wallabi Islands are the only islands in the group upon which the Tammar Wallaby lives. Thus the soldiers had access to sources of both food and water that were unavailable to the mutineers. Later the mutineers mounted a series of attacks, which the soldiers beat off. The Weibbe Hayes Stone Fort, remnants of improvised defensive walls and stone shelters built by Wiebbe Hayes and his men on the West Wallabi Island, are Australia's oldest known European structures, more than 150 years before expeditions to the Australian continent by James Cook and Arthur Phillip.
1642 Tasmania, Southern Australia
In 1642, Abel Tasman sailed from Mauritius and on 24 November, sighted Tasmania. He named Tasmania Van Diemen's Land, after Anthony van Diemen, the Dutch East India Company's Governor General at Batavia, who had commissioned his voyage. Tasman claimed Van Diemen's Land for the Netherlands.
1642 Maatsuyker Island, De Witt Island, Maatsuyker Islands Group, Tasmania, Southern Australia
Maatsuyker Islands, a group of small islands that are the southernmost point of the Australian continent. They were discovered by Abel Tasman in 1642 and named by him after a Dutch official. The main islands of the group are De Witt Island (354 m), Maatsuyker Island (296 m), Flat Witch Island, Flat Top Island, Round Top Island, Walker Island, Needle Rocks and Mewstone.
1642 Maria Island, Tasmania, Southern Australia
Maria Island was named in 1642 by Dutch explorer Abel Tasman after Maria van Diemen (née van Aelst), wife of Anthony van Diemen, the Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies in Batavia. The island was known as Maria's Isle in the early 19th century.
1642 Pedra Branca, Tasmania, Southern Australia
Abel Tasman led the first known European expedition to sight Tasmania. His journal entry for 29 November 1642 records that he observed a rock which was similar to a rock named Pedra Branca off China, presumably referring to the Pedra Branca in the South China Sea.
1642 Schouten Island, Tasmania, Southern Australia
Schouten Island is a 28 km2 island in eastern Tasmania, Australia. It lies 1.6 kilometres south of Freycinet Peninsula and is a part of Freycinet National Park. In 1642, while surveying the south-west coast of Tasmania, Abel Tasman named the island after Joost Schouten, a member of the Council of the Dutch East India Company.
1642 Storm Bay, Tasmania, Southern Australia
Storm Bay is a large bay in the south-east of Tasmania, Australia. It is the entrance to the Derwent River estuary and the port of Hobart, the capital city of Tasmania. It is bordered by Bruny Island to the west and the Tasman Peninsula to the east. The first European to reach Storm Bay was the Dutch explorer Abel Tasman in 1642.
1642 New Zealand
In 1642, during the same expedition, Tasman discovered New Zealand.
In 1643, still during the same expedition, Tasman discovered Fiji.
1643 Tongatapu & Haʻapai, Tonga
Tongatapu and Haʻapai were discovered by Europeans in 1643 by Abel Tasman commanding two ships, the Heemskerck and the Zeehaen commissioned by the Dutch East India Company of Batavia (Jakarta). The expedition's goals were to chart the unknown southern and eastern seas and to find a possible passage through the South Pacific and Indian Ocean providing a faster route to Chile.
1643 Cape Patience, Sakhalin
The first European known to visit Sakhalin was Martin Gerritz de Vries, who mapped Cape Patience and Cape Aniva on the island's east coast in 1643.
1643 Kuril Islands
In the summer of 1643, the Castricum, under command of Maarten Gerritsz Vries sailed by the southern Kuril Islands, visiting Kunashir, Iturup, and Urup, which they named "Company Island" and claimed for the Netherlands.
1643 Vries Strait, Kuril Islands
Vries Strait or Miyabe Line is a strait between two main islands of the Kurils. It is located between the northeastern end of the island of Iturup and the southwestern headland of Urup Island, connecting the Sea of Okhotsk on the west with the Pacific Ocean on the east. The strait is named after Dutch explorer Maarten Gerritsz Vries, the first recorded European to explore the area in 1643.
1643 Gulf of Patience, Sea of Okhotsk
Gulf of Patience is a large body of water off the southeastern coast of Sakhalin, Russia, between the main body of Sakhalin Island in the west and Cape Patience in the east. It is part of the Sea of Okhotsk. The first Europeans to visit the bay were the crew of the Dutch ship Castricum, captained by Maarten Gerritsz Vries, who were there in the summer of 1643, They named the gulf in memory of their having to wait for the fog to clear in order for them to continue with their expedition.
1696 Rottnest Island, Western Australian coast
The first Europeans known to land on the Rottnest Island were 13 Dutch sailors including Abraham Leeman from the Waeckende Boey who landed near Bathurst Point on 19 March 1658 while their ship was careened nearby. The ship had sailed from Batavia (Jakarta) in search of survivors of the missing Vergulde Draeck which was later found wrecked 80 km north near present day Ledge Point. The island was given the name "Rotte nest" (meaning "rat nest" in the 17th century Dutch language) by Dutch captain Willem de Vlamingh who spent six days exploring the island from 29 December 1696, mistaking the quokkas for giant rats. De Vlamingh led a fleet of three ships, De Geelvink, De Nijptang and Weseltje and anchored on the northern side of the island, near The Basin.
1697 Swan River, Western Australia
On 10 January 1697, Willem de Vlamingh ventured up the Swan River. He and his crew are believed to have been the first Europeans to do so. He named the Swan River (Zwaanenrivier in Dutch) after the large numbers of black swans that he observed there.
1722 Easter Island
On Easter Sunday, 5 April 1722, the Dutch explorer Jacob Roggeveen discovered Easter Island.
On 13 June 1722, after his discovery of Easter Island, Jacob Roggeveen discovered the Samoa islands.
1779 Orange River
1595–1597 First systematic mapping of southern celestial hemisphere (12 Dutch southern constellations)
In 1595, Petrus Plancius, a key promoter to the East Indies expeditions, asked Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser, the chief pilot on the Hollandia, to make observations to fill in the blank area around the south celestial pole on European maps of the southern sky. Plancius had instructed Keyser to map the skies in the southern hemisphere, which were largely uncharted at the time. Keyser died in Java the following year but his catalogue of 135 stars, probably measured up with the help of explorer-colleague Frederick de Houtman, was delivered to Plancius, and then those stars were arranged into 12 new southern constellations, letting them be inscribed on a 35-cm celestial globe that was prepared in late 1597 (or early 1598). This globe was produced in collaboration with the Amsterdam cartographer Jodocus Hondius.
Plancius's constellations (mostly referring to animals and subjects described in natural history books and travellers' journals of his day) are Apis the Bee (later changed to Musca by Lacaille), Apus the Bird of Paradise, Chamaeleon, Dorado the Goldfish (or Swordfish), Grus the Crane, Hydrus the Small Water Snake, Indus the Indian, Pavo the Peacock, Phoenix, Triangulum Australe the Southern Triangle, Tucana the Toucan, and Volans the Flying Fish. The acceptance of these new constellations was assured when Johann Bayer, a German astronomer, included them in his Uranometria of 1603, the leading star atlas of its day. These 12 southern constellations are still recognized today by the International Astronomical Union (IAU).
1637–1644 First major scientific expedition to Brazil
Within the thirty-year period the Dutch West India Company controlled the northeast region of Brazil (1624–1654), the seven-year governorship of Count Johan Maurits van Nassau-Siegen was marked by an intense ethnographic exploration. To that end, Johan Maurits brought from Europe with him a team of artists and scientists who lived in Recife between 1637 and 1644: painter Albert Eckhout (specializing in the human figure), painter Frans Post (landscape painter), natural historian Georg Marcgraf (who also produced drawings and prints), and the physician Willem Piso. Together with Georg Marcgraf, and originally published by Joannes de Laet, Piso wrote the Historia Naturalis Brasiliae (1648), an important early western insight into Brazilian flora and fauna, also is the first scientific book about Brazil. Albert Eckhout, along with the landscape artist Frans Post, was one of two formally trained painters charged with recording the complexity of the local scene. The seven years Eckhout spent in Brazil constitute an invaluable contribution to the understanding of the European colonization of the New World. During his stay he created hundreds of oil sketches – mostly from life – of the local flora, fauna and people. These paintings by Eckhout and the landscapes by Post were among the Europeans' first, introductions to South America.
1641–1653 First ethnographic descriptions of New Netherland and North American Indians
In 1641, Kiliaen van Rensselaer, the director of the Dutch West India Company, hired Adriaen van der Donck (1620–1655) to be his lawyer for his large, semi-independent estate, Rensselaerswijck, in New Netherland. Until 1645, van der Donck lived in the Upper Hudson River Valley, near Fort Orange (later Albany), where he learned about the Company's fur trade, the Mohawk and Mahican Indians who traded with the Dutch, the agriculturist settlers, and the area's plants and animals. In 1649, after a serious disagreement with the new governor, Peter Stuyvesant, he returned to the Dutch Republic to petition the Dutch government. In 1653, still in the Netherlands waiting for the government to decide his case, Adriaen van der Donck wrote a comprehensive description of the New Netherland's geography and native peoples based on material in his earlier Remonstrance. The book, Beschryvinge van Nieuw-Nederlant or A Description of New Netherland later published in 1655. This new book was well-crafted to the interests of his audience, consisting of an extensive description of American Indians and their customs, reports on the abundance of the area's agriculture and wealth of its natural resources.
1653–1666 First Western (European) first-hand account of Korea
Dutch seafarer and VOC's bookkeeper Hendrick Hamel was the first westerner to experience first-hand and write about Korea in Joseon era (1392–1897). In 1653, Hamel and his men were shipwrecked on Jeju island, and they remained captives in Korea for more than a decade. The Joseon dynasty was often referred to as the "Hermit Kingdom" for its harsh isolationism and closed borders. The shipwrecked Dutchmen were given some freedom of movement, but were forbidden to leave the country. After thirteen years (1653–1666), Hamel and seven of his crewmates managed to escape to the VOC trading mission at Dejima (an artificial island in the bay of Nagasaki, Japan), and from there to the Netherlands. In 1666, three different publishers published his report (Journal van de Ongeluckige Voyage van 't Jacht de Sperwer or An account of the shipwreck of a Dutch vessel on the coast of the isle of Quelpaert together with the description of the kingdom of Corea), describing their improbable adventure and giving the first detailed and accurate description of Korea to the western world.
- List of place names of Dutch origin
- Australian places with Dutch names
- Dutch linguistic influence on naval terms
- List of English words of Dutch origin
- Japanese words of Dutch origin
- Dutch Golden Age
- Flood control in the Netherlands
- Adams, Ann Jensen: Temporality and the Seventeenth-century Dutch Portrait (Journal of Historians of Netherlandish Art – JHNA.2013.5.2.15)
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