EDMOND, WILLIAM [SSNE 8019]
- EDMOND, EDMONDT, EDMONDS
- First name
- COLONEL, SIR
- Social status
EARLY CAREER, C. 1589-1599
Sir William Edmond was an officer in the Scots-Dutch Brigade during the Dutch War of Independence. He was, allegedly, the son of a baker from Edinburgh but most likely hailed from Stirling. He received a commission as a captain of 60 lancers on 10 June 1589, but according to his commission already had "experience and ability" in war (Ferguson, 90-91). His command fluctuated through the 1590s: in 1595, there were 100 men in his company with a salary of £2275 and in 1599 he led 80 men, £2125.
Edmond distinguished himself at Turnhout, January 1597. There, as part of a force under Prince Maurice, he led three cornets of cavalry in charge against the regiments of Barlotte and Hachicourt. At Sevanaer in 1599 he took Count Bucquoy prisoner, a feat which he apparently did twice. Edmond's colonel, Alexander Murray, was killed on 19 May 1599. On recommendations from both the Prince of Orange and James VI, Edmond was promoted to colonel of the Scottish regiment and probably still retained command of his cavalry company.
EARLY COLONELCY, 1599-1600
Colonel Edmond was deployed immediately after his promotion. On 8 July 1599 he fought alongside Horace Vere and the Sieur de la Noue at a bridge between Voorn and Herwarden, repulsing a Spanish army which attacked a fortification they had built near the bridge. In November of that year, Edmond was sent by Maurice to Emmerick, but upon being refused entry, burst the gates with the help of some German denizens of the town, and entered. In January 1600, Edmond was present with Louis of Nassau at the taking of Wachtendonc in Gelderland.
In the summer of 1600, Maurice laid siege to Nieuwpoort but learned that Archduke Albert was advancing rapidly towards him. Twelve Scottish companies, seven Zealand companies, four cavalry companies and two guns were sent under Edmond and Count Ernest of Nassau to take and hold the bridge of Leffingen. The expedition found the bridge already held by the Archduke's troops, and disaster struck when the Spaniards overwhelmed Edmond and the Count. Both guns were lost, along with 800 men, 600 of whom were Scots. Seven out twelve Scottish captains were killed, and Colonel Edmond, Sergeant-Major Brog [SSNE 7842], as well as captains Caddel [SSNE 8005], Henderson [SSNE 4975], and Ker were left to pick up the pieces of the regiment. They fled to Fort Albert, which was still held by Dutch forces, but many were killed "up to the very palisades of the fort," (Ferguson, 31). Edmond and his remaining troops returned to Nieuwpoort and were probably participants in the battle itself. After Nieuwpoort, Edmond was sent back to Scotland to "remake his regiment," (Ferguson, 32).
FINAL YEARS, 1600-1606
By October 1600, Edmond had brought over 800 new recruits from Scotland, and three new companies were formed. Edmond also recommended Sergeant-Major Brog to be appointed his Lieutenant-Colonel. By January 1602, Edmond was sent to relieve Ostend and had also accompanied Count Lewis on his foray into Luxembourg, where they ventured nearly 100 miles into hostile country. In 1606, Edmond was given command of Rheinberg, which was besieged by Spinola in August. On 3 September, Edmond was shot in the head while looking over the ramparts and died. He was succeeded by Lieutenant-Colonel Brog to the colonelcy of the regiment. By 12 October, the garrison surrendered and marched out. Thus, as Ferguson writes, "the first chapter of the history of the Scots Brigade [closed] dramatically with the bearing by the garrison of Rheinberg through Spinola's camp of the body of the veteran colonel of the old regiment," (Ferguson, 35).
Colonel Edmond left a widow, Agneta Berck, behind. Both she and her children were recommended by James VI in 1616. His son, Thomas Edmond [SSNE 8006], became a captain in Brog's regiment in 1617 before obtaining a commission for a captaincy in the cavalry in 1625. He had at least one daughter, Gertrude Edmond [SSNE 8039], who on 7 July 1649 went on to marry another brigade officer, Sergeant-Major (later Lieutenant-Colonel) Thomas Livingston [SSNE 4983].
J. Ferguson, Papers Illustrating the History of the Scots Brigade in theservice of the United Netherlands, 1572-1697 (Edinburgh, 1899), p. xii, xxxiv, 28-35, 54, 58-63, 66, 90-91, 178, 181, 183, 191, 192, 203, 205-7, 221, 282, 307, 322, 577.
Also see Dunthorne, Hugh. 2004 "Edmond [Edmonds], Sir William (d. 1606), army officer in the Dutch service." Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. 31 Jul. 2018. http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/10.1093/ref:odnb/9780198614128.001.0001/odnb-9780198614128-e-8488?rskey=tPxzWa&result=1
This entry created by Mr Jack Abernethy.
- THE DUTCH REPUBLIC, THE SCOTS BRIGADE, COL. BALFOUR, COL. MURRAY
- Arrived 1589-06-10, as CAPTAIN
- Departed 1599-05-19, as COLONEL
- Capacity OFFICER, purpose MILITARY
- THE DUTCH REPUBLIC, THE SCOTS BRIGADE, COL. EDMOND
- Arrived 1599-05-19, as COLONEL
- Departed 1606-09-03, as DECEASED
- Capacity OFFICER, purpose MILITARY