About 1600 the following Mennonite congregations were found in the province of Zeeland: Aardenburg, Groede (or Cadzand), Vlissingen, Middelburg, Veere, Goes, St-Maartensdijk, Zierikzee, and Brouwershaven. Of these congregations only Aardenburg, Vlissingen, Middelburg, and Goes were still in existence in the 1950s. About 1670 the total number of baptized members in Zeeland was perhaps c1245. This number was c900 in 1730, barely 195 in 1800, 376 in 1900, and 431 in 1958. The large decrease of members from c1680 and the dissolution of some congregations was caused partly by the intolerance of the States of Zeeland and of the local magistrates of some towns like Aardenburg, Middelburg, and Zierikzee, but mostly by the fact that the Mennonite refugees from Flanders who had settled as merchants in the Zeeland towns gradually moved to South or North Holland towns where they had better business opportunities.
It was at Middelburg in 1577 and soon after in the whole province of Zeeland that through the benevolence of Prince William I of Orange the Dutch Mennonites became officially exempted from the oath and military service.
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te Water, Jona Willem. Kort Verhaal der Reformatie van Zeeland in de zestiende eeuwe. Middelburg, 1766.
|Author(s)||Nanne van der Zijpp|
Cite This Article
van der Zijpp, Nanne. "Zeeland (Netherlands)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1959. Web. 21 Aug 2014. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Zeeland_(Netherlands)&oldid=93979.
van der Zijpp, Nanne. (1959). Zeeland (Netherlands). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 21 August 2014, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Zeeland_(Netherlands)&oldid=93979.
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