States of Brabant

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The States of Brabant were the representation of the three estates: Nobility, Clergy and Commons to the court of the Duke of Brabant. These three estates were also called the States. Supported by the economic strength of the cities Antwerp, Brussels and Leuven, the States always were an important power before the rulers of the country. This power was also reflected by the charter of the duchy.

After the duchy of Brabant and all Seventeen Provinces of the Netherlands came under the rule of the dukes of Burgundy, the States of Brabant became the host of the States-General of the Netherlands, who used to assemble in Brussels.

In 1579–1580, during the Eighty Years' War, most cities and States of Brabant joined Dutch independence declaration (Union of Utrecht and Act of Abjuration), but Spanish troops reconquered most of the territory of the duchy and restored Spanish Catholic rule (except for North Brabant, see also Siege of Antwerp (1584-1585)).

By the end of 1789, the States of Brabant again declared independence, this time from Austrian imperial rule, and, on January 11, 1790, joined the United States of Belgium. All Southern Netherlands "States" disappeared four years later, during French revolutionary occupation.