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Quint wanted to limit the power of William V, the prince of Orange

Going against such a powerful figure is not without personal risk. After the prince's supporters (the Orangists) came to power, Quint fled the country in 1787. Many patriots fled the city, as depicted on this anonymous print. Quint travelled to many cities, including Hamburg, Brussels and Ghent. After briefly serving as a soldier in the French army, he set up a print shop to enable him to distribute political articles. He considered it a way of standing up for his ideals.

Vanaf toen begon de weg naar de top voor Ondaatje

During the French conquest of the Netherlands in 1795, he returned to the Netherlands. He held several important offices in the years following: undersecretary of the War Council, member of the Committee to dissolve the Dutch East India Company, secretary-general of the General Police and Interior Correspondence and finally lawyer in The Hague.

But Quint remained unhappy with the country’s political climate...

That is why he preferred an overseas position later in life. In 1815, King William I finally appointed him first class civil servant for the Dutch East Indies. Ondaatje died in in Batavia (modern-day Jakarta) in 1818.

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