Eine gelungene Neuordnung. Die Ballei Utrecht des Deutschen Ordens, 1753–1795

Renger E. de Bruin

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12775/OM.2016.010

Abstract


A successful reorganization. The Teutonic Order Bailiwick of Utrecht, 1753–1795

In 1753 the newly elected coadjutor of the Teutonic Order Bailiwick of Utrecht, Unico Wilhelm Count van Wassenaer van Twickel, analyzed the state of the order, being a total chaos after a long period of decay. After he was commissioned by the other members to make a plan for improvement, Van Wassenaer managed to implement a reorganization that was highly successful. It was based on a rational management of the possessions by a professional steward, concentration of supervision at the land commanderie in Utrecht, a reduced role of the members and automatic succession of the land commander after his death by the coadjutor to prevent an interregnum as between 1751 and 1753. According to new rules, Van Wassenaer became land commander in 1761 and finished the reorganization during his time in office. After his death in 1766 his successor followed his course. The competent steward Gijsbert Dirk Cazius managed to turn the deficits into increasing surpluses, making the Baliwick of Utrecht an organization that was financially robust by the time it was threatened by the French Revolution. In the success of his financial policy Cazius, who worked closely together with the land commanders he served, was helped by the economic developments: the rising prices of agricultural products enabled farmers to pay higher rents that were  collected punctually by the steward. In its rational and utilitarian character the reorganization seems to breeze the spirit of the Enlightenment, but the emphasis on noble ancestors and Reformed confession as prerequisites for membership make the Bailiwick of Utrecht a typical institution of the Ancien Regime. However, the realized plans of Van Wassenaer led the Baliwick out of a desperate state and played a crucial role in the survival to the present day.


Keywords


Military Orders; Teutonic Order; order’s reform; Bailiwick of Utrecht; Early Modern Period; Netherlands in 18th century

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References


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