Aerial view of Delft with, from left to right, three churches, a university tower building and a windmill
Flag of Delft
Delft ( (About this sound listen)) is a city and municipality in the European country of the Netherlands. There it is located in the province of South Holland. Delft is located roughly between Rotterdam, to the south east, and The Hague, to the north west. Together with them, it is part of both Rotterdam–The Hague Metropolitan Area and the Randstad.

Delft is a popular tourist attraction in the country. It is home to Delft University of Technology ("TU Delft"), regarded as center of technological research and development in the Netherlands, Delft Blue pottery and the currently reigning House of Orange-Nassau. Historically, Delft played a highly influential role in the Dutch Golden Age. In terms of science and technology, thanks to the pioneering contributions of Antonie van Leeuwenhoek and Martinus Beijerinck, Delft can be considered to be the true birthplace of microbiology, with its several sub-disciplines such as bacteriology, protozoology, and virology.

The city of Delft came into being beside a canal, the 'Delf', which comes from the word delven, meaning delving or digging, and led to the name Delft. It presumably started around the 11th century as a landlord court.

From a rural village in the early Middle Ages, Delft developed into a city, that in the 13th century (1246) received its charter. (For some more information about the early development, see Gracht).

The town's association with the House of Orange started when William of Orange (Willem van Oranje), nicknamed William the Silent (Willem de Zwijger), took up residence in 1572. At the time he was the leader of growing national Dutch resistance against Spanish occupation, known as the Eighty Years' War. By then Delft was one of the leading cities of Holland and it was equipped with the necessary city walls to serve as a headquarters. An attack by Spanish forces in October of that year was repelled.

After the Act of Abjuration was proclaimed in 1581, Delft became the de facto capital of the newly independent Netherlands, as the seat of the Prince of Orange.

This page was last edited on 16 March 2018, at 13:09.
Reference: under CC BY-SA license.

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