start page Charles V TOUR :   Perrenot de Granvelle ➜

Dutch contemporaries
Pope Adrian VI ,   1522-1523
Erasmus of Rotterdam, *1466/9   †1536
Maximilian of Berghes (1483-1522), Lord of Zevenbergen, diplomat for Habsburg
Charles II of Egmond, Duke of Guelders 1492-1538
Counts van den Bergh ('s-Heerenberg): Oswald II, 1511-46 and Willem IV, 1546-86
Viglius Zuichemus (1507-1577), lawyer, humanist, statesman
Philippe de Montmorency (1518/26-1568), Count of Hoorn, freedom fighter
Lamoral of Egmond (1522-1568), Count of Egmond, freedom fighter
William I of Orange (1533-1584), leader of the Dutch Revolt

Pope Adrian VI,   1522-1523
Adrian Florensz was born from poor parents in Utrecht in 1459. He studied at the University of Louvain, where he later became professor of theology, chancellor and rector. The great humanist Erasmus was one of his pupils. In 1507 the emperor Maximilian I appointed Adrian tutor of his grandson Charles. As emperor, Charles entrusted him with numerous high offices in Spain. He was made cardinal in 1517, and when Charles left Spain in 1520, Adrian became governor.
When he was elected pope in 1522, Adrian took up the task of reforming the church with great earnestness in order to fight the Reformation, but he could accomplish little in the face of fierce opposition from the Italian Curia. Adrian was a charitable man, a scholar and ascete. He opposed corruption but also the arts. He was a hesitant mediator between Charles V and Francis I and failed to bring about a unificaton of European powers against the Turks who had occupied Rhodes in 1522.
The people in Rome hated him so much that they declared his physician a liberator when Adrian died after less than two years of governement in 1523. He was the last non-Italian pope until the election of John Paul II in 1978.

Giulio n. d., Parma.   Ø 27,2 mm, 3,76 g.   CNI IX p.417 n.4; Muntoni I 21; Berman 805.
Obv.:  HADRIANVS·SEXTVS·P·MAX·  -  popes bust to the left with tonsure and ornated cope.
Rev.:   ·DOMINVS· - ·PARMAE·   -   crossed keys between popes coat of arms and tiara.

Giulio n. d., Parma.   Ø 27 mm, 3,70 g.   CNI IX p.417 n.9; Muntoni I 23.
Obv.:   HADRIANVS·ELECT·PONT·MAX   -   popes bust to the right with tonsure and ornated cope.
Rev.:   VRBIS PARMAE - SECVRITAS   -   crossed keys between popes coat of arms and tiara.
The Papal State conquered Parma in 1512 and papal coins where issued there henceforth. In 1545, Pope Paul III transformed Parma into the Duchy of Parma and gave this papal territory to his son, thus establishing his family Farnese as an Italian ducal dynasty.

uniface Bronze cast medal n. d. (1522) by Conrat Meit of Worms.     Ø 80,8 mm-
Köhler, Münzbelustigung I (1729) No.16 p.121; Van Mieris II, p.158; Coll.Lanna 497;
W.Louwet / C.Meit: RBN 139 (1993) 120, pl.8/5.
"Lord Adrian, God elected him for Pope in Rome, born in Utrecht"   (flowers betwen the words)
Effigy with rich robe, tiara and the Order of St. George; he faces his family's coat of arms,
which emperor Charles V may have endowed him with - it is unlikely that his family had a coat of arms;
behind him the arms of Utrecht, his native town.
Compare with the picture in oil on wood (1522) von Bernaert van Orley (1488-1542).

Silber medal (1522-23).     Ø 34 mm, 20,12 g.   Armand II, 115,36.
Piece from the coin cabinet, Landesmuseum Württemberg, Stuttgart.

Obv.:   ·ADRIANVS·VI·PONT·MAX·  -  Bust tin a simple robe and a hood.
Apostle Peter from the front, holding the Keys of Heaven. Apostle Paul looks out from behind a pillar.
Compare with an etching by Daniel Hopfer (about 1470-1536).

Silver medal (1522-23).     Ø 33 mm, 21,24 g.   Armand III, p.198.G.
Specimen in the Coin Cabinet, Landesmuseum Württemberg, Stuttgart
To the scholarship of this Pope.

Obv.:   ·ADRIANVS·VI·PONT·MAX·  -  Bust to the left, wearing a simple robe and a bonnet.
Rev.:   PIRITVS SAPIENTIÆ / ROMA   "Spirit of wisdom"
Books, above which hover the keys of Peter and the tiara. The scene is outshone by the divine rays and the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove.

His predecessor on the Holy See was Leo X and his successor was Clement VII.

• Corpus Nummorum Italicorum [CNI],     Indici vol. I-XX :   Parma within vol.IX.
• Muntoni, Francesco: Le monete dei papi e degli Stati Pontifici, 4 vol.: vol.I (until 1559), Roma, 1972-73.

Desiderius Erasmus of Rotterdam ,   *1466/9  †1536
Erasmus, the great Dutch humanist, was born at Rotterdam in 1466/9. Both parents died early, and he had to enter a monastery. Thanks to the bishop of Cambrai, he was given the opportunity to study in Paris and travel to England. During these years of study he developped an aversion against the traditional scholastics. His writings criticized and ridiculed ecclesiastical abuses and encouraged the growing urge for reform. He sympathized with the Reformation at first, but he refused to intervene either for or against Luther at the time of the Diet of Worms in 1521. He rejected Luther's self-proclaimed dogmatic mission as well as the papacy's claim to secular power, which made him suspicious to both parties. His supporters were rationalists, opposed to orthodoxy and praised his independent stance in an age of fierce confessional controversy. Erasmus wrote to pope Adrian VI, whom he had known at Louvain: he claimed there was still hope for reconciliation, if only the church would ease the burden of rules, for instance by permitting priests to marry.
    Erasmus and Luther engaged in a great debate about the place of human free choice in the process of salvation. In this controversy Erasmus was a fervent defender of free will (De libero arbitrio, 1524) and Hyperaspistes (1526-27). Luther wrote De servo arbitrio (1525), one of his most important theological works, in the course of this debate.
    Erasmus emphasised studies in classical and Christian antiquity and became the greatest European scholar of the 16th century. He used philological methods in his historical-critical studies of the past and edited the writings of most of the major Church Fathers in both Latin and Greek. In 1516 he published the original Greek text of the New Testament together with his own Latin translation. This work was intended to stimulate a renewal of authentic Christian faith.
    Erasmus was named honorary councillor to the 16-year-old archduke Charles, the future Charles V. For him, he wrote "Education of a Christian Prince" in Latin.

Though he himself insisted that his best portrait was to be found in his books, Erasmus commissioned likenesses from some of the greatest artists of his day: Matsys, Dürer, and Holbein. Matsys had already painted Erasmus in 1517. Two years later he created this earliest medal of the famous humanist, who happened to pass through Antwerp that year.

figure from 'The Currency of Fame'
Cast bronze medal 1519,  by Quentin Matsys.     Ø 105 mm.
The Currency of Fame 157.   Piece in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.

"His writings will present a better image: portrait executed from life"
Bust to left, wearing a cap and a coat with a fur collar.
In the field to the left, ER[asmus]; to the right, ROT[terdamensis]   "Erasmus of Rotterdam".
Below, the date 1519.
"Consider the end of a long life - death is the ultimate limit of things"
On a rocky mound, a bust to left of the god Terminus, set upon a square base.
On the base: TERMINVS.   (roman god "Boundary Stone").
In the field, the motto, to be thought of as spoken by the god: CONCEDO - NVLLI   "I yield to no one".
The Erasmian character of the medal's legends and inscriptions should be noted. The Greek legend on the obverse echoes the philosopher's statement that his truest likeness is to be found in his works.     [from "The Currency of Fame, Portrait Medals of the Renaissance", 1994]

Hieronymus Hopfer used the medal as model for his etching in 1519 [Landesmuseum Münster, Westfalia].
Albrecht Dürer sketched Erasmus in Brussels in 1520. This drawing in charcoal was not the basis for Dürer's well known engraving of 1526, where he reproduced the Greek inscription of the medal.

• Stephen K. Scher [Ed.]: The Currency of Fame - Portrait Medals of the Renaissance, NY 1994,
  p.348-350, 361.

Maximilian of Berghes (1483-1545), Lord of Zevenbergen, diplomat for Habsburg
Maximilian, Lord of Zevenbergen, comes from the line of the Marquis de Bergen op Zoom in the Dutch-Belgian noble family of the Glymes. [He should not be confused with Maximilian de Berghes (around 1512-1570), Prince Archbishop of Cambrai, also a member of the Glymes family.] Maximilian became a Knight of the Order of the Golden Fleece in 1516. He played an important diplomatic role in the service of Archduchess Margaret of Austria in order to outdo King Francis I in the 1519 election of Emperor. At the time of the emperor's election in Frankfurt in 1519, Maximilian of Berghes supported the Swabian League in its fight against Duke Ulrich of Württemberg, an enemy of the Habsburgs and partisan of King Franz I. The Swabian League occupied the Duchy of Württemberg almost without a fight and was ready to intervene on election day (June 28, 1519) in Frankfurt. Maximilian of Berghes, took over Württemberg compensating the Swabian Federation for their war costs and became the emperor's governor of Württemberg in 1520.

Cast bronze medal 1518  by Hans Schwarz.     Ø 53 mm.
Habich I,1 142; Kastenholz 39; Wettstreit in Erz 68c.
Obverse: Staatliche Münzsammlung, Munich     Reverse: Cabinet des Médailles, Brusselles.

Obv.:   ❀MAXIMILIAN·DE·BERGHES ÆTatis·ANNo·XXXV   "... at the age of 35"
With the chain of the order of the Golden Fleece, which he received in 1516.

Coat of arms of the House of Glymes-Berghes: rising lion / three bars / three contoured diamonds.
Elevated inscriptions carved in the wooden model.
See a preliminary drawing for the medal by Hans Schwarz, width 178 mm, Staatsbibliothek Bamberg.
Maximilian von Berghes arrived at the Diet of Augsburg on October 16, 1518.

Wettstreit in Erz - Porträtmedaillen der deutschen Renaissance, Berlin München 2013
• R. Kastenholz :  Hans Schwarz - Ein Augsburger Bildhauer und Medailleur der Renaissance. 2006

Charles II of Egmond,  Duke of Guelders 1492-1538
Charles was raised in Brussels at the Burgundian court of Charles the Bold, who had bought the duchy of Guelders from Charles's father Adolf of Egmond in 1473. Charles fought in several battles against the armies of Charles VIII of France but was captured in 1487. In 1492, the citizens of Guelders ransomed Charles and recognized him as their Duke. Charles was a major player behind the scenes of the Guelderian Wars and the Frisian peasant rebellion. In both conflicts, he switched sides repeatedly. However, as he died without a legitimate heir, his efforts to prevent the emperor from taking over Guelders were in vain.
The House of Egmond's entitlement to the dukedom of Gelders had been contested ever since Arnold of Egmond had succeeded Raimund IV, Duke of Geldern, who had died without issue in 1423. The territorial conflict was a major issue in the Guelderian Wars. Between 1502 and 1543, the emperor (first Maximilian, then Charles V), a number of low country noble houses, and the Court of Burgundy fought for superiority and raids and ambushes took place throughout the Low Countries. At the end of the hostilities, all of the Low Countries were under the control of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor.

Teston n. d. (1496), piedfort of double weight.   Ø 29 mm, 28,39 g.   Delmonte 514.
Obv.:   *kAROLus'·DVX·GELRIaƐ·IVL'iaci·ᗭOM'es·ƷVT'phaniae   [ƷVT = ZVT]
"Charles, Duke of Guelders and Jülich, Count of Zutphen"
effigy in armor and with biretta to the left, circlets at the sides.

Rev.:   ƐQVITAS·IVDI - CIA·TVA·DOMI'ne     "Justice is your verdict, O Lord"
Coat of arms of Guelders and Jülich with a high crest.
The county of Zutphen was unified with Guelders in the 12th century.
Charles' father, Adolf of Egmond, used the same title "Duke of Guelders and Julich, Count of Zutphen", on his shield at the occasion of the festivities of the Order of the Golden Fleece in 1468. The shield - like the coin - shows the lion of Guelders (golden on blue background) and the lion of Julich (black on golden background).

Look at the portrait, painted 1528 by Jan Swart van Groningen, in the Historisch Museum Arnhem.

Florin n. d., Nijmegen ('Ridergulden').   Ø 24 mm, ca.3,2 g.   Delmonte 620; Friedb.68.
Obv.:   k'AROLVS◂DVX◂GᗺLRiae - IVLiaci◂ᗭomes◂ƷVtphaniae
The Duke with drawn sword and in full tournament armor riding to the right. In the exergue: ◂GᗺL◂.
Rev.: ✥ᙏONᗺta◂nOVA◂AVRᗺA◂DVᗭIS◂GᗺLRiae   -   flower cross with arms Guelders|Jülich.

Snaphaan n. d.     Ø 36 mm, 7,48 g.   Delmonte 516.
Obv.:  kA - ROL∗DVX∗GELR∗IVL∗ - CO ƷV'
Armored Duke on horseback to the right. In the exergue: ◂GᗺL◂.
Rev.:   ƐQVITAs - IVDIᗭ - IA·TVA - DOMIne   "Justice is your verdict, O Lord"
Coat of arms on a flower cross.

• Delmonte, A.: Le Benelux d'argent. De zilveren Benelux. The silver Benelux. Amsterdam 1967, p.129-131.
• Delmonte, A.: Le Benelux d'or. ... Amsterdam 1964.

Oswald II, Count van den Bergh ('s-Heerenberg) 1511-1546
The ancestral seat of Oswald II (*1508), member of the noble family "von dem Bergh", was in 's-Heerenberg in the Dutch province of Gelderland. His son Willem IV (see below) became involved in the Dutch revolt.

Specimen of the Teylers Museum, Haarlem, NL (Inv. TMNK 07580).
Daalder o. J. (1544).     Ø 40 mm, 28,33 g.   Delmonte 568; Davenport 8576.
Obv.:   (1) OSWALD'C (2) OMes·De·MON (3) Tes·DomiNuS·De·BIland (4) WISch·Z(=et)·HOmoet
"Oswald, Count of Bergh, Lord of Byland, Wisch and Homoet"   -   effigy with biretta to the left
arms in the legend: (1)=Bergh ; (2)=Egmond ; (3)=Culemborg ; (4)=Moers-Saarwerden.

"God, defender of my life, of whom shall I be afraid?"
Twofold helmeted and quartered shield with the arms (1)-(4)

Willem IV, Count van den Bergh ('s-Heerenberg) 1546-1586
Willem was the eldest son of Oswald II. and married to the elder sister of Orange, Maria of Nassau. He was a prominent member of the League of Nobles, also known as the Compromis.
On 5 April 1566, the League presented a petition against the inquisition and against accusations of heresy to Margaret of Parma, Regent for her brother Philip II of Spain in Brussels. They were nicknamed Geuzen (Beggars), which later became a name of honor for the freedom fighters in the Dutch Revolt. When Fernando, Duke of Alba, succeeded Margaret as governor-general of the Netherlands in 1567, he started a program of repression. The Palace of Culemborg, where the League of Nobles had signed the Compromis, was razed to the ground by Alba's troops in May 1568 and the ringleaders were indicted before the Council of Troubles. 18.000 people were executed between 1567 and 1573.
Willem was able to escape with his family to Germany. In 1572, he invaded the Netherlands with a small army of mercenaries, financed by his brother-in-law, the Prince of Orange (see below). His initial success could not be uphold against Alba's troops. After the Pacification of Ghent (1576), Willem van den Bergh was granted amnesty and regained his forfeited possessions. However, when he was disappointed in his ambition to become stadtholder of Gelderland, he secretly approached the new royal governor-general of the Netherlands, Alexander Farnese, Duke of Parma. Even though he later did become stadtholder of Ghent with the Utrecht Union of 1579, he remained in secretive contact with Parma and sabotaged the military efforts of the Rebels. He was arrested when his treasonous correspondence was discovered but was soon released on condition to remain neutral in future. In spite of his promise, he defected to the royalist forces together with his sons, who became officers in the Spanish service.

Daalder n. d.     Ø 39 mm, 27,03 g.   Delmonte 569; Davenport 8577.
Obv.:   (pomegranate) GVIL·CO·D·MON·Z·DNS·D·BIL·HE·BOX·HO·Z·WIS
"Willem Count of Bergh and Lord of Byland, Hedel, Boxmeer, Homoet and Wisch"
"God, defender of my life, of whom shall I be afraid?"   -   helmeted arms of Bergh.

Viglius Zuichemus (1507-1577), lawyer, humanist, statesman
Viglius Zuichemus (Wigle Aytta van Zwichem) became one of the first lawyers of his time. He became assessor of the Imperial Court of justice in Speyer in 1535. Then he followed a call to the University of Ingolstadt. Charles V invited him to became a member of the council of Mechlin to advice regent Mary of Hungary. He accompanied the emperor during the Schmalkaldic War, over which he set up a diary.
After the abdication of Charles V, Viglius remained legal adviser of King Philip II of Spain and was rewarded with benefice of the monastery of the St. Bavo Cathedral in Ghent, where he is buried.
During the regency of Margaret of Parma Viglius belonged to the "Consulta", the real government under the absolutist leadership of Antoine de Granvelle. The humanist Viglius pleaded for a compromise with the 'nobility opposition' (see below) and wished a personal appearance of Philip II in the Netherlands. When the Duke of Alba arrived in the Netherlands Viglius at first assisted him; but he vainly advocated a more moderate religion policy, which made him feel increasingly uncomfortable. After Albas resignation in 1573 Viglius war imprisoned together with the other members of the state council for a short time in 1576. Viglius was an advocate of peace and moderation, and as such could not expect support or sympathy from hardliners from either side of the dispute. He died as a broken man.

Cast silver medal 1556 by J. Jonghelinck.     Ø 52,2 mm, 32,79 g.   v. Loon I p.44/1.
Obv.:   VIGLIVS ZVICHEMVS PRÆSES SECreti.CONsilii.CÆSarea.Z REGiae·MAjestatis
"... Chairman of the Secret Council of the Emperor and Royal Majesty"
Bust with fur coar, in the arm truncation ÆT XLIX   "at the age of 49".

Rev.:   ·VITA·MORTALIVM·VIGILIA   "The life of mortals is but a night watch"
Altar, on it hourglass, burning candle and open book,
attached the family arms (wheat sheaf), below cartouche with the engraved date 1556.

Cast silver medal n. d. by J. Jonghelinck.     Ø 39,6 mm, 21,0 g.   v. Loon I p.55/1.
Obv.:   VIGLIVS ZVICHEMVS AB AYTA Iuris·Vtriusque·Doctor·  
"Wigle Zwichem van Aytta, lawyer of both rights"  -  Bust right. In the truncation: ...?
Quartered shield with arms of Ghent (lion) and Viglius Zuichemus (wheat sheaf),
on top Tiara with Inful, in the back a crosier.

Specimen of the Teylers Museum, Haarlem, NL - Inv. TMNK 00191.
Cast silver medal 1568     Ø 27,3 mm.   v. Loon I p.55/2.
Obv.:   VIGLIVS - AYTA A ZVICHEM·Vtriusque·Iuris·DOCtor  -  At the truncation: 1568.
Rev.:   ·VITA MORTA - LIVM VIGILIA   -   Shield as before.

Cast silver medal n. d. (engraved 1571) by J. Jonghelinck.     Ø 39,5 mm, 23,86 g.
v. Loon I S.43/1; Smolderen (Jonghelinck) 79.

Obv.:  VIGLIVS ZVICHEMVS AB AYTA Iuris·Vtriusque·Doctor·   Arm section: ÆT·LXV·   "65 years old".
Rev.:   VITA MORTA - LIVM VIGILIA   (His motto as before).

Philippe de Montmorency (1518/26-1568), Count of Hoorn and freedom fighter
Philippe became governor of Guelders in 1555 and an Admiral of Flanders in 1556. He was a member of the Council of State during the regency of Margaret of Parma. In 1562 he joined with Lamoral Count Egmond and William of Orange to the 'nobility opposition' against Cardinal Granvelle, who tried to install the Spanish Inquisition and Spanish rules in the Netherlands. When Granvelle retired, the three nobles continued to oppose. King Philip II of Spain send Duke of Alba to replace Margaret of Parma as governor. Alba entered the Netherlands with an army in 1567. Orange fled from the country, but Hoorn and Egmond, despite his warning, decided to remain. They were both captured, tried at the 'Council of Troubles' (people called it 'Council of Blood'), condemned as traitors and executed by decapitation on 5 June 1568 at the Grand Place in front of the town hall in Brussels. The execution caused great public indignation and was the beginning of the 'Eighty Years War' against the Spaniards, which ended only in the Peace of Westphalia in 1648 with the recognition of the independence of the United Netherlands.

Cast lead medal n. d. (1566) by J. Jonghelinck.     Ø 36 mm, 29,69 g.
v. Loon I p.76/2; Armand II p.241 No.26.

Bust to the right, Order of the Golden Fleece.
Rev.:   WALBOVRG DE NVENAR CONTESSE DE HORN   -   Bust to the left.
Philipp married 1546 Anna Walburga of Neuenahr (1522-1600)
and received the Order of the Golden Fleece in 1555 (when Philip II was the Order's sovereign).

Specimen of the Teylers Museum, Haarlem, NL - Inv. TMNK 00177.
Cast silver medal 1565 (manufactured later).     Ø 59,1 mm.   v. Loon - (see I p.102).
At the truncation: 1565.
Neptune lies in a sea car, an angel with a palm branch holds a laurel wreath over a seated woman.

Lamoral of Egmond (1522-1568), Count of Egmond and freedom fighter
Lamoral served Emperor Charles V in campaigns, so in Algiers (1541) and against France (1552). He succeeded his deceased brother in 1542 in the government of the county of Egmond and as governor of the province of Holland. He received the Order of the Golden Fleece in 1546, at the same occasion as Duke of Alba. In the service of the Spanish army, he defeated the French in the battles of Saint-Quentin (1557) and Gravelines (1558). King Philip II appointed him governor of Flanders and Artois in 1559. He participated in the 'nobility opposition' to the royal minister Cardinal Antoine Granvelle in 1564, but sought the proximity to regent Margaret of Parma. Egmont traveled to Madrid to sumbit complaints, received only courtesy from the king and returned without any news. As a good Catholic, he fought vigorously against the 'Beeldenstorm' (outbreaks of destruction of religious images in catholic churches), that erupted in 1566. Duke of Alba appeared with an army in the Netherlands in 1567, whereupon Margaret of Parma resigned. Count of Egmond was sneakily arrested along with Count of Hoorn on 9.9.1567, convicted of high treason by the "Council of Unrests" - called the "Blood Council" by the people - and beheaded on 5.6.1568 on the Grand Place in Brussels. Both of them were fleece knights and were theoretically inmun from trial by any but their peers of the Order.

Silber medal n. d. (1568).    cast from 17th century.   Ø 62,3 mm, 53,88 g.   v.Loon I p.102.
On the imprisonment of Philip of Montmorency and of Lamoral, Count of Egmont in 1567.

Bust of the Count of Hoorn to the right, similar to the previous obvers.
Rev.:   AMVRATus·PRINceps·GAVERanus·COes·EGMONTanus·FLANdriae·ARTesiaeque·PRÆFectus
Bust of the Count of Egmond from the front.
Compere the uniface lead cast of the obverse at The Frick Collection, N. Y. shown in the web,
as well as a later uniface restrike of the obverse from Elsen, Brussels, Auct.129 no.1332 (6.2016).

11 years later on the occasion Spain offered peace, the following medal was issued as a warning, in order avoid the fate of the beheaded counts of Egmond and Hoorn.

Medal 1579 issued by the city of Dordrecht.     Ø 35 mm, 15,45 g.   v. Loon I p.275.
Obv.:   ∗PRÆSTAT∗PVGNARE∗PRO∗PATRIA∗ ·15∗79·   "It is better to fight for the homeland, ..."
Two riders and two men - dressed as Spaniards and Dutchmen - on foot in sword fighting.

Rev.:   ∗QVAM∗SIMVLATA∗PACE∗DECIPI∗   "... than to be cheated by false peace"
Two dead bodies lying on the ground, whose heads are placed on stilts.

William I of Orange the Silent (1533-1584),
Prince of Orange, Count of Nassau, leader of the Dutch Revolt
William was born in in the lutheran House of Nassau in Dillenburg in Hesse (Germany). 11 years old he inherited in 1544 from his childless cousin René de Châlon the principality of Orange in Provence (France) as well as estates in the Netherlands, on the condition that he receive a Roman Catholic education. The now important Prince Wilhelm was educated at the catholic court of Mary of Hungary in Brussels. Emperor Charles V valued William and appointed him as the leader of a Dutch army against France. Wilhelm was awarded the Order of the Golden Fleece in 1555. Charles V successor King Philip II appointed William as governor of Holland, Zeeland and Utrecht, but Antoine de Granvelle, prime minister of the Regent Margaret of Parma, kept him away from the government. In 1562 he joined with Count of Hoorn and Count of Egmond to the 'nobility opposition' against minister Antoine de Granvelle, who had to resign in 1564. Wilhelm was very tolerant in religious matters and advocated for religious freedom. The nobility opposition negotiated with the regent in 1565/66 the "Compromis des nobles", which seduced anti-clerical forces to agitate against the Roman church and iconoclasm, which was suppressed by the leading nobility.
King Philipp sent Duke of Alba with an army to the Netherlands in 1567. When Albas "Blood Council" had seized the Counts von Hoorn and Egmond, William of Orange had already fled to Dillenburg in Hesse. Williams dutch possessions were confiscated, but he continued the fight, initially with a devastating defeat. King Philipp II became great difficulties (recalling Albas from the Netherlands in 1573, outstanding payment of wages, mutinies, looting, national bankruptcy in 1575) and he outlawed William in 1580. The northern seven provinces declared in 1579/81 their independence from Spain. Philip II then put a high bounty on Wilhelm, who was murdered by the Catholic fanatic in 1584.
Wilhelm's nickname 'the Silent' appeared in the 17th century. Cardinal Granvelle is said to have used it during the troubles of 1567. The Dutch consider William I of Orange as the "Father of the Fatherland". He is ancestor of the monarchy of the Netherlands.

Portable bronze medal 1577 by Conrad Bloc, Antwerpen.     Ø 40 mm?   v. Loon I p.240,1.
On the marriage of William with Charlotte of Bourbon-Montpensier.

Obv.:   GVILELmus·Dei·Gratia·PRinceps·AVRAICÆ·COmes·NASSAVIÆ·I577 - COEN·BLOC·Fecit
"William, by the grace of God Prince of Orange, Count of Nassau 1577 - made by Conrad Bloc"
Armored bust with high ruff to the right.

Bust with hood, dress and large ruff to the left.
1571 Wilhelm separated from his wife Anna of Saxony, the Lutheran daughter of Maurice of Saxony, because Anna's passionate affair with the father of Peter Paul Rubens. William became a Calvinist in 1573 (his second confession change) and married in 1575 in his third marriage Charlotte of Bourbon-Montpensier (1546-1582), who had fled from a monastery to Heidelberg. She died as a result of exhaustion in the care of her husband, who had been wounded in an assassination attempt.

Gilden silver cast medal 1579 by Conrad Bloc.     Ø 40 mm.
v. Loon I p.240,2(1577); Pinchart p.32.

Obv.:  GVILELmus·Dei·Gratia·PRinceps·AVRAICÆ·COmes·NASSAV·I579 - CONR·BLOC·Fecit
Rev.:  CHARLOTTE·DE·BOVRBON·PRincesse·D AVRENGE·I579·  -  Bust of Charlotte of Bourbon left.

Portable silver cast medal 1584 by Conrad Bloc.     Ø 36,5 mm.   v. Loon I p.343.
On William's death.

Obv.:   ·GVILELmus·Dei·Gratia·PRinceps·AVRAicae·COmes·NASSaViae·ELECtus·COmes·HOLAndiae / FRISiae·ET·VTREGt - Ætatis·52·Ann·1584·
".... Prince of Orange, Count of Nassau, elected Count of Holland, Frisland and Utrecht
at the age of 52 in 1584"  -  Bust to the left.

Rev.:   Female genius of freedom, illuminated by the light of heaven, with the Bible on her lap, holding
a sword with the hat of freedom. On both sides a lion with sword, they protect the
enclosure of the country, at the bottom a crowned shield.
Page extended in 9.2019.

• Gerard van Loon :  Beschryving der Nederlandsche Historipenningen
    1st part 1723 (until 1603, 574 p.) and 2nd part (until 1733, 68 p.) - available online.
• Delmonte, A. :  La Bénélux d'or  &  La Bénélux d'argent.   Amsterdam 1964 & 1967.
Teylers Museum in Harlem NL - coins and medals overview

start page Charles V   /   Karl V. TOUR :   Perrenot de Granvelle ➜