Prince Jan II of Knootcap
|Prince Jan II of Knootcap|
Prince Jan III of Knootcap
Jan II, Prince of Knootcap was born in Leeuwarden in the United Provinces of Knootoss. He was the son of Prince Jan of Knootcap of the Frisian branch of the House of Knootcap and only a very indirect descendant of the brother of William of Knootcap. At age seven his father died and he became chief executive and military commander of the province of Friesland. He married Archduchess Yaroslava of Taraskovya two years later.
His father, Johan of Knootcap, had been the eldest son of Prince Jan of Knootcap. Johan had never held the position of Stadhouder during the Second Stadtholderless Era (1702-1747), when the Republic unsuccesfully fought to remain a great power in the Second War of Insolence.
In an effort to quell internal strife amongst the various factions the Staten-Generaal selected Jan II as their leader in 1747, making Stadhouder of all the provinces a hereditary position. At first, he was popular with the people when he spoke out against the power and wealth of the Knootian business establishment. Nevertheless, he was at the same time himself Director-General of the Knootian East India Company and his alliance with the business class deepened while the disparity between rich and poor grew. He served as stadhouder of all Knootoss until he died of Typhoid fever in 1760.