Private Life in Wartime: Captured Letters from 1672

Activity: Talk or presentationAcademic


The seizure of enemy ships was common in early modern wartime. Such was also the case during the Third Anglo-Dutch War (1672-1674). Letters aboard Dutch ships never reached their intended overseas colonies. Instead, English enemies
intercepted and seized the posts. The material is unique considering that large portions of the writers came from lower societal classes and many were women. This contribution will focus on the question which subjects of the private life the senders considered important to mention in their letters.
Period31 Jan 2020
Degree of RecognitionInternational


  • Letters
  • 1672
  • Third Anglo-Dutch War
  • lower classes
  • women
  • Women's history
  • seamen
  • Maritime History
  • History from below
  • Dutch Republic
  • Dutch Golden Age
  • Dutch History