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Personnel matters: Staffing The School of Alba

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Chapter Summary

When the tercios of Italy occupied the Netherlands in August 1567, the Duke of Alba, ordered the dismissal of most local troops and officers under the direct control of a single high command led by himself effectively hispanizing the armies of the Low Countries. Once in the Netherlands Alba put to use the tactical lessons of a lifetime to defeat and eject the Dutch rebel army from the country. Alba built his Army of Flanders by entrusting the officers he had brought from Italy with the command of all troops in the Netherlands and taking away most of those responsibilities from the local provincial Governors. This chapter deals with the major features of Albas style of leadership, how they influenced the policies of his successors down to Parma, and how they were discarded or eroded under the rule of Archduke Albert of Austria and the Twelve Years Truce.

Keywords: Archduke Albert of Austria; Army of Flanders; Duke of Alba; Dutch rebel army; Netherlands; Twelve Years Truce



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