14 Patent of nobility / ANTWERPEN VERBRUGGE, VAN FREYHOFF 187


Patent of nobility donated by Roman Empress Maria Theresia of Austria (1717-1780) to Gijsbert Antwerpen Verbrugge (1717-1777) wechsler zu Amsterdam. The patent of nobility allows Antwerpen Verbrugge to add Von Freyhoff to his family name.
Holy Roman Empire, Vienna, d.d. 22 November 1766. Full red linen with yellow silk ribbons. (20) pages on vellum. Manuscript, calligraphic text and lavishly engraved decorations in the margins, with coats-of-arms in the margins of the first 4 pages. Has protective fly leafs between the pages. One full-page hand painted coloured and gold coat-of-arms with the family motto (tandem bona causa triumphant). On the last page the signature of Empress Maria Theresia. One loose extra sheet outside the book containing a letter, handwritten in German, addressed to Antwerpen Verbrugge d.d. 21 March 1767. With Imperial wax seal in mint condition, 14 cm. diameter, in decorated embossed copper casing. The seal is attached to the book by the cord of the binding, which is made of copper and cloth wire. The copper has discoloured the red linen of the front cover. All in a metal case. This patent of nobility was donated by Roman Empress Maria Theresia of Austria to Gijsbert Antwerpen Verbrugge (van Freyhoff) (1717-1777), who was active as wechsler (banker) in Amsterdam and was a mennonite. He was son of a 'zeepsieder': soapmaker in Gouda. He married 'jonkvrouwe' Maria Hooft in 1741 (when Antwerpen Verbrugge apparently was active as canon (kannunik) of the chapter (kapittel) St. Pieter in Utrecht) and lived in Amsterdam and partly on an estate currently known as Gooilust in 's-Graveland. Antwerpen Verbrugge was closely associated to the Imperial court in Vienna through his banking firm Verbrugge & Goll. This firm provided funds to the imperial court since 1758. They started their activities for the imperial court when a previous engaged firm of the Amsterdam mayor Deutz was liquidated. He had provided funds based on the imperial quicksilver mines. These facts are explained in the patent of nobility and are confirmed by historic sources. According to the patent Antwerpen Verbrugge succeeded in liquidating the loans without any losses. Maria Theresia found herself forced to accept the services of Antwerpen Verbrugge again in 1765 and 1766 for two loans that the court direly needed. Both Johann Goll and Antwerpen Verbrugge were accepted into the nobility as token of appreciation of these services. Ever since these events the ties between both bankers, their firm and the imperial court became even closer. They were responsible for loans up to several million guilders. His associate Goll was infamous as a banker and was suspected of fraud and other criminal activities during his life. Antwerpen Verbrugge was entitled by Maria Theresia to add Von Freyhoff to his family name, which he did using the Dutch translation of 'von' being 'van'. H018
IDnumber: 60885

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