In this chapter we discuss the history of the Netherlands as a land of sea, rivers, levees, and polders. Water and levees are part of the Dutch genes. In order to understand the constant struggle of the Dutch against the threatening water of the sea and an abundance of rivers, we start our research in the beginning of our era. This also gives us an understanding of the development of flood defense construction techniques, and the intrinsic weaknesses of flood barrier constructions. Where it concerns basic shapes and techniques, not much has changed in flood barrier construction in the past 2,000 years.