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Gillis van Berlaymont
Gilles de Berlaymont.jpg
Biographical information

c. 1545


June 18, 1579
Maastricht, Habsburg Netherlands

Political information


Real-world information
Appears in


Gilles van Berlaymont (c. 1545 – 18 June 1579 in Maastricht) was stadtholder for the Spanish Crown of Drenthe, Friesland, Groningen and Overijssel (1572-1573), stadtholder of Guelders (1572-1577), substitute stadtholder of Holland, Zeeland and Utrecht (1574-1577), stadtholder of Namur and Artois (after 1578) and baron of Hierges. He was a member of the Templar Order.

He was the son of Charles de Berlaymont and Adriana de Ligne Barbançon, and a brother of Claude de Berlaymont and Florent de Berlaymont.

In 1572 he was made a Knight in the Order of the Golden Fleece, and on 2 September 1577 became a member of the Council of State.

In 1567 Gilles commanded the Siege of Valenciennes, the first siege of the Eighty Years' War. He captured and sacked Schoonhoven, and Oudewater in August 1575.

Gillis van Berlaymont started on 19 July 1575 and ended in a bloodbath on 7 August 1575. Many of the inhabitants were put to the sword, and some citizens set their own houses on fire to spite looters, leading to a major conflagration. In total as much as half the population of the town may have died.

Afterwards, however, he took part in Don Juan's seizure of power by them to conquer the Citadel of Namur (July 24, 1577) and then on behalf of Don Juan himself to seize the fortress Charlemont at Givet.This Gilles loyalty was rewarded with high positions Spanish, though he lost his governor shelves in the now rebellious provinces of Holland, Zeeland, Utrecht, Gelderland and Zutphen. On 2 September 1577 he was a member of the Council of State.

He was killed by Assassin Willem van Dooren during the Siege of Maastricht (1579).