Dutch Blue Guards

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The Dutch Blue Guard (Dutch : Blauwe Garde) was an elite infantry unit of the army of the United Provinces of the Netherlands. Notable campaigns where they fought included the Nine Years' War (1688–97), where they distinguished themselves at the battle of the Boyne, battle of Fleurus and the siege of Limerick (1690).

Dutch language West Germanic language

Dutch(Nederlands ) is a West Germanic language spoken by around 23 million people as a first language and 5 million people as a second language, constituting the majority of people in the Netherlands and Belgium. It is the third most widely spoken Germanic language, after its close relatives English and German.

Nine Years War major war (1688–97) between King Louis XIV of France, and a European-wide "Grand Alliance"

The Nine Years' War (1688–97)—often called the War of the Grand Alliance or the War of the League of Augsburg—was a conflict between Louis XIV of France and a European coalition of the Holy Roman Empire, the Dutch Republic, Spain, England and Savoy. It was fought in Europe and the surrounding seas, North America and in India. It is sometimes considered the first global war. The conflict encompassed the Williamite war in Ireland and Jacobite risings in Scotland, where William III and James II struggled for control of England and Ireland, and a campaign in colonial North America between French and English settlers and their respective Indigenous allies, today called King William's War by Americans.

Battle of the Boyne battle

The Battle of the Boyne was a battle in 1690 between the forces of the deposed King James VII and II of Scotland, England and Ireland and those of Dutch Prince William of Orange who, with his wife Mary II, had acceded to the Crowns of England and Scotland in 1688. The battle took place across the River Boyne near the town of Drogheda in the Kingdom of Ireland, modern day Republic of Ireland, and resulted in a victory for William. This turned the tide in James's failed attempt to regain the British crown and ultimately aided in ensuring the continued Protestant ascendancy in Ireland.

From 1688 to 1699 they served as William III of Orange's Guards regiment. Under King William III, the regiment served in England as his personal guard. After the death of William III in 1702, the regiment went back to the Netherlands and during the War of the Spanish Succession (1702–1712) was the backbone of the Dutch army. In this war the Dutch army was the second largest in Europe.[ citation needed ] In particular, the Dutch pioneered the development of platoon fire, which allowed infantry formations to fire continuously - giving the Dutch an advantage in firepower over armies not using the platoon fire system. The 4th Regiment (The Blaauwe Garde, named after the color of their uniforms) distinguished itself in the battles of Blenheim (Hochstadt), Malplaquet and Oudenaarde.

William III of England 17th-century Stadtholder, Prince of Orange and King of England, Scotland and Ireland

William III, also widely known as William of Orange, was sovereign Prince of Orange from birth, Stadtholder of Holland, Zeeland, Utrecht, Gelderland and Overijssel in the Dutch Republic from 1672 and King of England, Ireland and Scotland from 1689 until his death in 1702. As King of Scotland, he is known as William II. He is sometimes informally known in Northern Ireland and Scotland as "King Billy".

War of the Spanish Succession major European conflict (1700–1714) after the death of Charles II

The War of the Spanish Succession (1701–1714) was a European conflict of the early 18th century, triggered by the death of the childless Charles II of Spain in November 1700. His closest heirs were members of the Austrian Habsburg and French Bourbon families; acquisition of an undivided Spanish Empire by either threatened the European balance of power.

The Dutch Blue Guards in the War of Spanish Succession

During the war of Spanish Succession, the 4th regiment, The Blue Guards, saw action on many battlefields in Europe. It was part of the Allied armies under the command of John Churchill, Duke of Marlborough, a British general. Armies of Great Britain, the Dutch Republic, Austria, Prussia, Hanover, Portugal, the German Empire and Savoy were united in an alliance. They fought against Louis XIV of France, who had the support of Bavaria and Cologne. The Blue Guards were not present at the Allied victory of Blenheim, but greatly distinguished themselves at the Battle of Ramillies, under the command of Colonel Wertmuller, storming two French held villages on the Allied left. They also fought bravely and suffered heavy losses at Malplaquet, fighting under the command of the Prince of Orange on the Allied left flank.

Battle of Ramillies Battle of the War of the Spanish Succession

The Battle of Ramillies, fought on 23 May 1706, was a battle of the War of the Spanish Succession. For the Grand Alliance – Austria, England, and the Dutch Republic – the battle had followed an indecisive campaign against the Bourbon armies of King Louis XIV of France in 1705. Although the Allies had captured Barcelona that year, they had been forced to abandon their campaign on the Moselle, had stalled in the Spanish Netherlands and suffered defeat in northern Italy. Yet despite his opponents' setbacks Louis XIV wanted peace, but on reasonable terms. Because of this, as well as to maintain their momentum, the French and their allies took the offensive in 1706.

The Allied forces achieved a number of victories over the French, including at Hochstadt, Ramillies, Turin, and Oudenaerde Malplaquet. Only in 1713 began talks that eventually led to a peace agreement. In 1714, Baden in Rastatt and the peace treaties signed.

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