Willem van Oranje (24 April 1533 – 10 July 1584) was the main leader of the Dutch revolt against the Spanish. When the Dutch became more and more victorious in their revolt, the Spanish became fed up with Willem and put a price on his head. In the end it was Balthasar Gerard who shot him in the "Prinsenhof" (Prince's court) in Delft. His last words were, "Mijn God, Mijn God, heb medelijden met mij en met dit arme volk." ("My God, My God, have mercy on me and these poor people.") Balthasar Gerard was captured and sentenced to death.
Due to the combination of the Financial trait (for more commerce and therefore science) and the Dike (to improve production later in the game), Willem is ideal for the Space Race victory.
Willem van Oranje is one of the leaders who will plan wars when pleased.
- Strategy: gold (5) and science (2).
- Favourite religion: Christianity.
- Wonder Construct random: 20 (from 0 to 50).
- Base Attitude: 0 (from -1 to 2).
- Base Peace Weight: 4 (from 0 to 10).
- Warmonger Respect: 0 (from 0 to 2).
- Espionage Weight: 100 (from 50 to 150).
- Refuse To Talk War Threshold: 8 (from 6 to 10).
- No Tech Trade Threshold: 15 (from 5 to 20).
- Tech Trade Known Percent: 15% (from 0 to 100).
- Max Gold Trade Percent: 10% (from 5 to 20).
- Max War Rand: 100 (from 50 to 400).
- Raze City Prob: 0 (from 0 to 75).
- Build Unit Prob: 25 (from 0 to 40).
- Close Borders Attitude Change: -1 (from -4 to -2).
- Same Religion Attitude Change Limit: 1 (from 2 to 7).
- Different Religion Attitude Change: 0 (from -2 to 0).
- Favorite Civic Attitude Change Limit: 4 (from 1 to 6).
- Demand tribute will be refused when: cautious or worse.
- Request help will be refused when: cautious or worse.
- Request technology will be refused when: furious.
- Request strategic bonus will be refused when: annoyed or worse.
- Request happiness bonus will be refused when: furious.
- Request health bonus will be refused when: furious.
- Request map will be refused when: furious.
- Request declare war will be refused when: pleased or worse.
- Request declare war them will be refused when: cautious or worse.
- Request stop trading will be refused when: pleased or worse.
- Request stop trading them will be refused when: furious.
- Request adopt civic will be refused when: cautious or worse.
- Request convert religion will be refused when: annoyed or worse.
- Request open borders will be refused when: annoyed or worse.
- Request defensive pact will be refused when: pleased or worse.
- Request permanent alliance will be refused when: pleased or worse.
- Request vassal will be refused when: pleased or worse.
- Max War Nearby Power Ratio: 100 (from 80 to 130).
- Max War Distant Power Ratio: 60 (from 30 to 100).
- Max War Min Adjacent Land Percent: 1 (from 0 to 4).
- Limited War Rand: 120 (from 40 to 200).
- Limited War Power Ratio: 100 (from 80 to 130).
- Dogpile War Rand: 80 (from 25 to 100).
- Make Peace Rand: 40 (from 10 to 80).
- Demand Rebuked Sneak Prob: 50 (from 0 to 100).
- Demand Rebuked War Prob: 20 (from 0 to 50).
- Base Attack Odds Change: 2 (from 0 to 6).
- Worse Rank Difference Attitude Change: 1 (from -3 to 0).
- Better Rank Difference Attitude Change: -1 (from 0 to 4).
- Share War Attitude Change Limit: 4 (from 2 to 4).
- Vassal Power Modifier: 0 (from -20 to 50).
Willem van Oranje, also known as "William the Silent," was born in 1533 into the House of Nassau, a prominent noble family in what is today modern Germany. In 1544, the young Count of Nassau, but 11 years old, became the Prince of Orange through an inheritance, with new holdings in the Netherlands waiting for young Willem to come of age.
Oranje was raised in the lap of luxury, his family a favorite of the Spanish monarch in control of the Netherlands, Charles V. Oranje received his education in France at the behest of the Spanish King and proved to be both a precocious student and a charismatic leader. With the completion of his education, Oranje took control of his estates in the Netherlands. Thanks in part to his calm demeanor, which was a welcome change during an age of rising tensions, Oranje was appointed to a number of important posts within the Dutch government, eventually reaching the position of stadtholder, the highest rank open to a Dutchman. His selection to this auspicious rank came thanks to Phillip II, Charles' son and the new King.
By 1559, enforcement of the law of Placaten, which made Protestantism not only a religious crime, but a civil one as well, increased bloodshed between Protestants and Catholics throughout the Netherlands. Oranje, taking a stance against the persecution of Protestants in the Netherlands, gradually found himself on the wrong side of the Catholic Spanish monarchs. Catching word of an imminent assassination attempt, Oranje was forced to retreat to his castle in Nassau, hoping to keep himself alive and free of the growing Dutch rebellion.
When Phillip II sent Fernando de Toledo, the Duke of Alva, to deal with the uprising and arrest its leaders, Oranje was included in the list of outlaws. After failing to defeat Alva with his meager army, Oranje again fled, fortifying himself in the states of Holland. The Prince of Oranje, universally recognized for his ability and cunning, now found himself embroiled in the heart of the sweeping Dutch rebellion, which would continue to grow in size and scope into what became known as the Eighty Years' War.
Due to sudden changes in Spanish leadership within the region, a number of provinces, taking advantage of the ensuing havoc, allied themselves with Oranje and the rebellion. With the signing of the Union of Utrecht in 1579, the five northern provinces of the Netherlands, along with much of Flanders and Brabant, previously separate, united in their opposition to Spain.
To support the insufficient Dutch forces, Oranje had sought foreign aid and in 1581 received word from Francis, Duke of Anjou, brother of the French king, that if the struggling provinces declared independence from Spain and appointed Francis their sovereign, he would aid them in defeating their Spanish foe. So, on July 26, 1581, the United Provinces declared their independence from Spain.
Oranje, unfortunately, was unable to enjoy his country's new independence for long. Unhappy with the restrictions the Dutch nobles had placed on his powers, the Duke of Anjou turned against Oranje and his peers. And while Anjou was defeated not long after, an assassin hired by King Phillip gunned down Willem van Oranje in 1584, bringing to an end the leader's grand struggle for Dutch freedom.
While Oranje had passed on, the want for an independent Netherlands did not. Struggles would continue with the Spanish, but in 1648, the Treaty of Münster would end the Eighty Years' War and finally grant the country the self-determination that Willem van Oranje had died trying to institute.
- Willem van Oranje is perhaps better known to history by the English translation of his name, William of Orange. That has sometimes caused confusion though with the equally famous William III of England (1650AD - 1702AD).