Historical fiction

“Uprising in Amsterdam”

In het Nederlands

Plundering of Joachim Rendorp's house, 1787
Plundering of Joachim Rendorp’s house, May 29, 1787 (source)

I am currently finalizing a historical young adult novel, set in Amsterdam in 1786-1787, the last two years of the Patriot movement in the Netherlands (1780-1787). During these years traditional opposition against the stadtholder and “Prince” of Orange mixed with democratic aspirations among middle class citizens, inspired by the American Revolution.

The main character is the 16-year-old Lysbet, a maid in the household of Amsterdam burgomaster Joachim Rendorp with an exceptional artistic talent,  who falls in love with a Patriot bookseller’s apprentice. Amidst increasing political tensions she does not only have to keep her relationship a secret, but also her drawings of people and events. Characters are based on witness statements from Rendorp’s servants about the plundering of his house on May 29, 1787 during riots between Patriots and Orangists.

A sequel will be set in the Ulster County, NY, to where the protagonists emigrate after the Patriot revolution fails and the most prominent Patriots are banned from the country.

Patriots vs Orangists (Rijksmuseum site in English)
Read about the plundering (Dutch)
Read about Rendorp’s house in 1787 (Dutch)