The United Netherlands

The United Kingdom of the Netherlands was a political entity that came into existence after the defeat of Napoleon Bonaparte in 1814. It was formed by the merging of the former Dutch Republic and the Austrian Netherlands under the House of Orange-Nassau. During the Napoleonic Wars, the Netherlands had been under French control as the Kingdom of Holland, but with Napoleon's fall, the Dutch sought to establish a new political order. The Kingdom of the Netherlands had a significant army during the Napoleonic era. Although not as large or powerful as some of the major European powers, the Dutch army played an important role in several key battles and campaigns. Under the guidance of Prince William of Orange, who later became King William I of the Netherlands, the Dutch army underwent modernization and restructuring to improve its capabilities.

The army of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands was involved in the famous 100 days campaign of 1815. This campaign marked Napoleon's return from exile on the island of Elba and his attempt to regain power. The Dutch army, along with other allied forces, played a crucial role in the final defeat of Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo. Led by the Duke of Wellington, the allied forces successfully repelled Napoleon's army, bringing an end to his rule and securing the peace in Europe. In terms of its monarchy, the United Kingdom of the Netherlands was headed by King William I. As a member of the House of Orange-Nassau, William was a popular figure among the Dutch people, and his reign was marked by efforts to restore stability and prosperity to the country. He implemented various reforms and policies aimed at stimulating economic growth and promoting national unity. However, his attempts to centralize power and impose his authority faced opposition from regional interests and contributed to political tensions within the kingdom.


Overall, the United Kingdom of the Netherlands played a significant role in the Napoleonic Wars and the subsequent 100 days campaign. Its army, under the leadership of King William I and the Duke of Wellington, made valuable contributions to the allied cause. Additionally, the monarchy attempted to rejuvenate the country and establish a sense of national identity during this crucial period in European history.

Learn more about the Dutch Belgian army in Marshals Unleashed