Battle of Scheveningen
The Battle of Scheveningen (also known as the Battle of Texel or the Battle of Ter Heijde) was the final naval battle
Naval battle
A naval battle is a battle fought using boats, ships or other waterborne vessels. Most naval battles have occurred at sea, but a few have taken place on lakes or rivers. The earliest recorded naval battle took place in 1210 BC near Cyprus...

 of the First Anglo-Dutch War
First Anglo-Dutch War
The First Anglo–Dutch War was the first of the four Anglo–Dutch Wars. It was fought entirely at sea between the navies of the Commonwealth of England and the United Provinces of the Netherlands. Caused by disputes over trade, the war began with English attacks on Dutch merchant shipping, but...

. It took place on 8– 1653 between the fleets of the Commonwealth of England
Commonwealth of England
The Commonwealth of England was the republic which ruled first England, and then Ireland and Scotland from 1649 to 1660. Between 1653–1659 it was known as the Commonwealth of England, Scotland and Ireland...

 and the United Provinces
Dutch Republic
The Dutch Republic — officially known as the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands , the Republic of the United Netherlands, or the Republic of the Seven United Provinces — was a republic in Europe existing from 1581 to 1795, preceding the Batavian Republic and ultimately...

, and had no clear victor.


After their victory at the Battle of the Gabbard
Battle of the Gabbard
The naval Battle of the Gabbard, also known as the Battle of Gabbard Bank, the Battle of the North Foreland or the second Battle of Nieuwpoort took place on 2–3 June 1653 according to the Old Style of Julian calendar then used in England during the First Anglo-Dutch War near the Gabbard...

 in June 1653, the English fleet of 120 ships under General-at-Sea George Monck blockaded the Dutch coast, capturing many merchant vessels. The Dutch economy began to collapse immediately: mass unemployment and even starvation set in. On , Dutch Lieutenant-Admiral Maarten Tromp
Maarten Tromp
Maarten Harpertszoon Tromp was an officer and later admiral in the Dutch navy. His first name is also spelled as Maerten.-Early life:...

 put to sea in the Brederode
Dutch ship Brederode
Brederode was a ship of the line of the navy of the United Provinces of the Netherlands, and the flagship of the Dutch fleet in the First Anglo-Dutch War. Throughout her career, she carried from 53-59 guns...

 with a fleet of 100 ships to lift the blockade at the island of Texel
Texel is a municipality and an island in the Netherlands, in the province of North Holland. It is the biggest and most populated of the Frisian Islands in the Wadden Sea, and also the westernmost of this archipelago, which extends to Denmark...

, where Vice-Admiral Witte de With's 27 ships were trapped by the English. On , the English sighted Tromp and pursued to the south, sinking two Dutch ships before dark, but allowing De With to slip out and rendezvous the next day with Tromp off Scheveningen, right next to the small village of Ter Heijde
Ter Heijde
Ter Heijde is a village in the Dutch province of South Holland. It is a part of the municipality of Westland, and lies about 11 km west of The Hague....

, after Tromp had positioned himself by some brilliant manoeuvering to the north of the English fleet.

The battle

The winds were fierce on and overnight, giving both fleets pause. Around 7 in the morning of , the Dutch gained an advantage from the weather and attacked, led by the Brederode
Dutch ship Brederode
Brederode was a ship of the line of the navy of the United Provinces of the Netherlands, and the flagship of the Dutch fleet in the First Anglo-Dutch War. Throughout her career, she carried from 53-59 guns...

. The ensuing battle was ferocious, with both fleets moving through each other four times. Tromp was killed early in the fight by a sharpshooter in the rigging of William Penn
William Penn (admiral)
Sir William Penn was an English admiral, and the father of William Penn, founder of the Province of Pennsylvania....

's ship. His death was kept secret to keep up the morale of the Dutch, but by late afternoon, twelve of their ships had either been sunk or captured and many were too heavily damaged to continue the fight. In the end, morale broke and a large group of vessels under the command of merchant captains fled to the north. De With tried to halt their flight, but had to limit himself to covering the retreat to the island of Texel. However, the English fleet, also heavily damaged and with many wounded in urgent need of treatment, had to return to port to refit and were unable to maintain the blockade.


Both sides claimed a victory: the English because of their tactical superiority, the Dutch because the strategic goal of their attack, the lifting of the blockade, had been achieved. However, Tromp's death was a severe blow to the Dutch – few now expected to beat the English; the Orangist faction lost political influence and Grand Pensionary
Grand Pensionary
The Grand Pensionary was the most important Dutch official during the time of the United Provinces. In theory he was only a civil servant of the Estates of the dominant province among the Seven United Provinces: the county of Holland...

 Johan de Witt
Johan de Witt
Johan de Witt, heer van Zuid- en Noord-Linschoten, Snelrewaard, Hekendorp and IJsselveere was a key figure in Dutch politics in the mid 17th century, when its flourishing sea trade in a period of globalization made the United Provinces a leading European power during the Dutch Golden Age...

 was willing to give formal treaty assurances to Cromwell
Oliver Cromwell
Oliver Cromwell was an English military and political leader who overthrew the English monarchy and temporarily turned England into a republican Commonwealth, and served as Lord Protector of England, Scotland, and Ireland....

 that the infant William III of Orange
William III of England
William III & II was a sovereign Prince of Orange of the House of Orange-Nassau by birth. From 1672 he governed as Stadtholder William III of Orange over Holland, Zeeland, Utrecht, Guelders, and Overijssel of the Dutch Republic. From 1689 he reigned as William III over England and Ireland...

 would never become stadtholder
A Stadtholder A Stadtholder A Stadtholder (Dutch: stadhouder [], "steward" or "lieutenant", literally place holder, holding someones place, possibly a calque of German Statthalter, French lieutenant, or Middle Latin locum tenens...

, thus turning the Netherlands into a base for a Stuart restoration. Peace negotiations began in earnest, leading to the 1654 Treaty of Westminster
Treaty of Westminster (1654)
The Treaty of Westminster was signed on 8 May 1654, which ended the First Anglo-Dutch War . Based on the terms of the accord, the United Provinces recognized Oliver Cromwell's Navigation Acts, which required that imports to the Commonwealth of England must be carried in English ships, or ships from...


The damage done to the Dutch fleet effectively ended the first war. The Dutch capitulated to several English demands.
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