Military Wiki
Battle of Kollum
Part of the Eighty Years' War & the Anglo–Spanish War
Date19 July 1581
(present-day the Netherlands)
Result Anglo-Dutch victory[1]
England England
Dutch Republic Dutch Rebels
Commanders and leaders
England John Norreys
Dutch Republic Diederik Sonoy
Spain George van Lalaing
4,000 5,000
Casualties and losses
light 700 killed, wounded or captured[2]

The Battle of Kollum was a military engagement that took place on the 16th July 1581 during the Eighty Years' War and the Anglo–Spanish War. The battle was fought between an English and Dutch force under John Norreys and Diederik Sonoy respectively, and a Spanish force under George van Lalaing, the Count of Rennenberg. The Dutch and English were victorious, and as a result of the defeat Rennenberg, already ill, died two days later.[3]

In March 1580 George van Lalaing, the Count Rennenberg had turned against William the Silent, and then declared for Spain. This caused outrage amongst the Dutch with many even coming over to the side of the rebels. Rennenberg led an army to lay siege at Steenwijk but was defeated when an Anglo Dutch relief army under John Norreys arrived.[2]

Many of Rennenberg's army were sick and in a mutinous mood; they fled east towards Groningen and with Norreys in pursuit not too far behind. Renneberg hoping to catch his pursuers off guard turned and faced them at Kollum. Norreys attacked almost at once sweeping away the Spanish forces from the field who then fled all the way to Groningen itself. The battle was one sided and a heavy defeat; Spanish casualties were heavy with 700 killed, wounded or captured and in addition the loss of all their military baggage and all four of their field guns.[2] Rennenberg, who had been too ill to take command, died four days later at Groningen.[3]

Rennenberg's successor Francisco Verdugo soon attacked again at Noordhorn; this time Norreys was defeated in the pitched battle.[1]


  • Jaques, Tony (2006). Dictionary of Battles and Sieges: A Guide to 8500 Battles from Antiquity Through the Twenty-first Century. Greenwood Press. ISBN 978-0313335365. 
  • Nolan, John S. (1997). Sir John Norreys and the Elizabethan Military World. Liverpool University Press - Liverpool Science Fiction Texts and Studies. ISBN 9780859895484. 

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