289 IUS COMMUNE AND INTERNATIONAL WINE TRADE IUS COMMUNE AND INTERNATIONAL WINE TRADE A REVISION (Middelburg c. Antwerp, 1548– 1559) by A LAIN W IJFFELS (Louvain-la-Neuve) To Prof. Dr.Dr.h.c. J.Th. de Smidt on his 80th birthday As these lines were being written, the expansion of the container port at Flush- ing was the latest major development in the competition between Zeeland and Antwerp economic interests. That competition, which has now been going on for more than half a millennium, has to some degree always reflected, albeit in very different political contexts over the centuries, a faultline of complemen- tary, yet conflicting, trade interests within the Low Countries. The ‘Scheldt Question’ is but a specific feature of that wider conflict, exacerbated by the control of the Scheldt estuary, the only gateway to maritime trade for Antwerp, by the Province of Zeeland (and thus, for most of the time since the 16th cen- tury, by Dutch political powers) 1 . From the start, however, the issue of mari- time trade on the Scheldt was not merely a question of political and military control over the commercial navigation on the river. Zeeland’s strategic posi- tion at the estuaries of both the
The Legal History Review / Tijdschrift voor Rechtsgeschiedenis / Revue d'Histoire du Droit – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2003
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