Across the narrow sea: A Transnational Approach to Anglo-Dutch Travelogues
SourceThe Seventeenth Century, 35, 1, (2020), pp. 105-124
Article / Letter to editor
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Nederlandse Taal en Cultuur
The Seventeenth Century
SubjectEurope in a Changing World; Transnational Europe
The busy traffic between England and the United Provinces in the seventeenth century produced travel literature by merchants, scholars, soldiers, and diplomats. What can these sources tell us about commonalities and differences among these travellers and between the nations? This article provides a case study of a transnational approach, setting Dutch and English accounts side by side to enrich our understanding of how travellers sought out specific sites and institutions. Strikingly, travellers reported on similar themes, such as royalty, universities and war, yet were also keen to draw contrasts with the visited country. We show how these patterns of travel and imagery can throw light on Anglo-Dutch relations, providing us with the personal nuance often absent from official texts. Simultaneously, Anglo- Dutch relations affected the destinations and outlooks of travel- lers. The contribution of this article is its presentation of new material in an Anglo-Dutch framework.
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