It is highly regrettable that a history of the Netherlands seen from five focal points starts with the year 1650. Could this be a nineteenth-century interpretation of Dutch history, to consider the Dutch Republic as the starting point of our past? The years 1500 or 1550 — or an even earlier date — would have been a far more appropriate starting point. Despite the fact that the Dutch pride themselves on being very European-minded, they often neglect the history of the Southern Netherlands and Belgium. This negligence has to do with the tendency of the Dutch to overestimate the importance of their own culture: Many historians believe that the entire world is fascinated by the (contemporary) history of the Netherlands. Within the series, the lack of coherence between the cultural and the political history of the country is striking. The authors and the publisher are also to blame for the inconsistency between the content and the illustrations.