Famous 17th Century Military Leaders

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 1 Tokugawa Ieyasu

Tokugawa Ieyasu
Famous As: Military Leader
Birthdate: January 31, 1543
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Okazaki Castle, Mikawa (now Okazaki, Japan)
Died: June 1, 1616

Tokugawa Ieyasu was the founder and first shōgun of the Tokugawa shogunate of Japan. He is considered one of the three "Great Unifiers" of Japan. He was the son of Matsudaira Hirotada, a minor local warlord. He grew up to be an ambitious young man with exemplary leadership qualities and eventually founded the Tokugawa shogunate of Japan. 

 2 John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough

John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough
Famous As: Military Leader
Birthdate: May 26, 1650
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Ash, Musbury
Died: June 16, 1722

 3 Oliver Cromwell

Oliver Cromwell
Famous As: English Statesman
Birthdate: April 25, 1599
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Huntingdon, Huntingdonshire, Kingdom of England
Died: September 3, 1658
The Lord Protector of the Commonwealth of England, Scotland, and Ireland, Oliver Cromwell was a military leader and a devoted Puritan who belonged to an affluent landowning family. During the English Civil War, Cromwell fought against King Charles I and caused the deaths of at least 3,000 soldiers and civilians.
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 4 Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden

Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden
Famous As: King of Sweden (1611-1632)
Birthdate: December 9, 1594
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Stockholm, Sweden
Died: November 6, 1632

Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden reigned as the King of Sweden from 30 October 1611 until his death on 6 November 1632, at the age of 37. He is credited with transforming Sweden into a great European power. Considered one of the greatest modern military commanders, Gustavus Adolphus turned Sweden into one of Europe's primary military forces during the Thirty Years' War.

 5 Shivaji

Famous As: 1st Chhatrapati of the Maratha Empire (1674-80)
Birthdate: February 19, 1630
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Maharashtra, India
Died: April 3, 1680

Shivaji was an Indian warrior-king. He is credited with founding the Maratha Empire, which became a force to reckon with during the 18th century. He is also credited with creating his own navy. Considered one of the most important Indian kings and a hero of the Hindus, Shivaji's life and work have inspired several works of art, including films.

 6 Charles XII of Sweden

Charles XII of Sweden
Famous As: King of Sweden
Birthdate: June 17, 1682
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Stadsholmen, Stockholm, Sweden
Died: November 30, 1718
Charles XII ruled Sweden as an absolute monarch for 18 years during the Great Northern War. He took over the throne at 15. Although appreciated for his effective legal and tax reforms, he is known to have led Sweden to immense destruction by participating in the 1707-1709 campaign against Russia.

 7 Albrecht von Wallenstein

Albrecht von Wallenstein
Famous As: Military leader and statesman who fought on the Catholic side during the Thirty Years' War (1618–1648)
Birthdate: September 24, 1583
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Heřmanice, Czechia
Died: February 25, 1634
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 8 John III Sobieski

John III Sobieski
Famous As: Military leader, Politician
Birthdate: August 17, 1629
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Olesko
Died: June 17, 1696

Well-educated and well-traveled, John III Sobieski initially joined the Swedes as a soldier, in opposing Polish ruler John Casimir. He then switched to the Polish side. He gradually rose through the ranks to become a grand marshal and a grand-hetman, and eventually became the king of Poland.

 9 Prince Rupert of the Rhine

Prince Rupert of the Rhine
Famous As: Military Leader
Birthdate: December 17, 1619
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Prague, Czechia
Died: November 29, 1682

Prince Rupert of the Rhine was a German-English admiral, army officer, colonial governor, and scientist. Renowned for his energy and quick-thinking, Rupert made long-lasting and impressive contributions to the doctrine and development of the Royal Navy. He is also credited with shaping modern Canada's political geography. 

 10 Philippe II, Duke of Orléans

Philippe II, Duke of Orléans
Famous As: Statesman, Regent of France (1715-1723)
Birthdate: August 2, 1674
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Saint-Cloud, France
Died: December 2, 1723

Philippe II, Duke of Orléans, was the regent of the Kingdom of France from 1715 to 1723. He was the son of Philippe I, Duke of Orléans, and Elizabeth Charlotte of the Palatinate. He was named the regent of France for Louis XV, who succeeded to the throne at the age of five. Philippe died months after Louis attained majority.

 11 Prince Eugene of Savoy

Prince Eugene of Savoy
Famous As: Military commander
Birthdate: October 18, 1663
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: April 21, 1736

Prince Eugene of Savoy was a field marshal who served in the army of the Austrian Habsburg dynasty and of the Holy Roman Empire. One of the most influential military commanders of his generation, Prince Eugene served three Holy Roman emperors in a career spanning 60 years. Consequently, he played important roles in many battles, including the Battle of Turin.

 12 James Oglethorpe

James Oglethorpe
Famous As: Founder of the colony of Georgia
Birthdate: December 22, 1696
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Surrey
Died: June 30, 1785

Remembered as the founder of the British colony of Georgia in the US, James Oglethorpe was a renowned British soldier, MP, and social reformer. Educated at Oxford, he initially fought for the Austrian army against the Turks. As an MP, he brought in prison reforms. He was also the governor of Georgia.

 13 Maurice de Saxe

Maurice de Saxe
Famous As: Soldier
Birthdate: October 28, 1696
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Goslar, Germany
Died: November 20, 1750

 14 Malhar Rao Holkar

Malhar Rao Holkar
Birthdate: March 16, 1693
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Jejuri
Died: April 20, 1766

 15 Michiel de Ruyter

Michiel de Ruyter
Famous As: Admiral
Birthdate: March 24, 1607
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Vlissingen, Netherlands
Died: April 29, 1676

Michiel de Ruyter was a Dutch admiral best remembered for his achievements during the Anglo-Dutch Wars. An important member of the Dutch Navy during his time, De Ruyter is widely considered one of the most talented admirals of all time. Regarded as a Dutch folk hero, Michiel de Ruyter's life and career inspired the 2015 Dutch film, Michiel de Ruyter.

 16 Nanny of the Maroons

Nanny of the Maroons
Famous As: Resistance fighter
Birthdate: 1686 AD
Birthplace: Ghana
Died: 1755 AD

 17 Daniel Morgan

Daniel Morgan
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: July 6, 1736
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Hunterdon County, New Jersey, United States
Died: July 6, 1802

 18 Bohdan Khmelnytsky

Bohdan Khmelnytsky
Famous As: Hetman of Zaporizhian Host (1648 –1657)
Birthdate: 1595 AD
Birthplace: Subotiv, Ukraine
Died: August 6, 1657

 19 Henri de La Tour d'Auvergne, vicomte de Turenne

Henri de La Tour d'Auvergne, vicomte de Turenne
Famous As: Military leader
Birthdate: September 11, 1611
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Sedan, France
Died: July 27, 1675

 20 Myles Standish

Myles Standish
Famous As: Colonist
Birthdate: 1584 AD
Birthplace: Lancashire, United Kingdom
Died: October 3, 1656

 21 Ishida Mitsunari

Ishida Mitsunari
Famous As: Military Commander
Birthdate: 1559 AD
Birthplace: Ōmi Province
Died: November 6, 1600

 22 Edward Braddock

Edward Braddock
Famous As: military personnel
Birthdate: December 31, 1695
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Perthshire
Died: July 13, 1755

 23 Thomas Fairfax

Thomas Fairfax
Famous As: Political leader
Birthdate: January 17, 1612
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Denton Hall, Wharfedale
Died: November 12, 1671

 24 Simon Fraser, 11th Lord Lovat

Simon Fraser, 11th Lord Lovat
Famous As: Military Leader
Birthdate: January 5, 1667
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: England
Died: April 9, 1747

 25 James FitzJames, 1st Duke of Berwick

James FitzJames, 1st Duke of Berwick
Famous As: Duke
Birthdate: August 21, 1670
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Moulins, France
Died: June 12, 1734

 26 John William Friso

John William Friso
Famous As: Prince
Birthdate: August 14, 1687
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Dessau, Germany
Died: July 14, 1711

John William Friso, the Prince of Orange, succeeded William III of Orange as the stadtholder of the provinces of Friesland and Groningen in the Dutch Republic and remained so until his death. Friso along with his wife, Marie Louise, is noted as the most recent common ancestors of all the currently reigning European monarchs.

 27 Thomas Wentworth, 1st earl of Strafford

Thomas Wentworth, 1st earl of Strafford
Famous As: Noble
Birthdate: April 13, 1593
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: London, England
Died: May 12, 1641

 28 Wu Sangui

Wu Sangui
Famous As: Military general
Birthdate: June 8, 1612
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Gaoyou, South Zhili, Ming dynasty, China
Died: October 2, 1678

 29 Tokugawa Tsunayoshi

Tokugawa Tsunayoshi
Famous As: Military Dictator
Birthdate: February 23, 1646
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan
Died: February 19, 1709

 30 Louis, Grand Condé

Louis, Grand Condé
Famous As: General
Birthdate: September 8, 1621
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: December 11, 1686

 31 James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose

James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose
Famous As: Poet
Birthdate: October 25, 1612
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Edinburgh, Scotland
Died: May 21, 1650

Known as The Great Montrose, James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose was not just a Scottish nobleman and military leader but also a talented poet. He won many battles for Charles I but was defeated in the Battle of Carbisdale, following which he was hanged to death in the Edinburgh marketplace.

 32 Maurice, Prince of Orange

Maurice, Prince of Orange
Famous As: Prince
Birthdate: November 14, 1567
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Dillenburg, Germany
Died: April 23, 1625

Maurice, Prince of Orange is remembered for transforming the Dutch army with his modern military strategy and engineering. The second son of William I the Silent, he was part of the Eighty Years’ War with Spain. He passed away shortly before the siege of Breda was completed.

 33 Johann Tserclaes, Count of Tilly

Johann Tserclaes, Count of Tilly
Famous As: Military Commander
Birthdate: February 1, 1559
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Tilly, Belgium
Died: April 30, 1632

Johann Tserclaes, Count of Tilly was a field marshal who played a major role in the famous Thirty Years' War. A fierce field marshal, Johann Tserclaes had a string of prominent victories from 1620 to 1631 against the Protestants. He destroyed the Protestant city of Magdeburg, so much so that 20,000 inhabitants out of a population of 25,000 were dead.

 34 Jan Pieterszoon Coen

Jan Pieterszoon Coen
Famous As: Governor-General
Birthdate: January 8, 1587
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Hoorn, Netherlands
Died: September 21, 1629

 35 Henry Morgan

Henry Morgan
Famous As: Privateer, Lieutenant Governor of Jamaica
Birthdate: January 24, 1635
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Llanrumney, Glamorgan
Died: August 25, 1688

Henry Morgan was a Welsh privateer who later served as lieutenant governor of Jamaica. He is best remembered for raiding settlements on the Spanish Main. From the wealth acquired through his raids, Morgan became a plantation owner, buying three large sugar plantations in the Caribbean. His life and career inspired several films, such as Captain Blood and Morgan, the Pirate.

 36 Dimitrie Cantemir

Dimitrie Cantemir
Famous As: Soldier
Birthdate: October 26, 1673
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Dimitrie Cantemir, Romania
Died: September 1, 1723

 37 Zeng Guofan

Zeng Guofan
Famous As: Political Leader
Birthdate: November 26, 1811
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Shuangfeng, China
Died: March 12, 1872

Chinese military general and Confucian scholar Zeng Guofan is best remembered for his efforts in crushing the Taiping Rebellion. Apart from being a court scholar of the Qing rulers, he also served on various prominent boards. His writings have been preserved as a collection of 156 books.

 38 Nathaniel Bacon

Nathaniel Bacon
Famous As: Colonist
Birthdate: January 2, 1647
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Suffolk, England
Died: October 26, 1676

 39 Lord George Murray

Lord George Murray
Famous As: Scottish general
Birthdate: October 4, 1694
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Huntingtower, Scotland
Died: October 11, 1760

 40 Alexander Spotswood

Alexander Spotswood
Famous As: Lieutenant-Colonel
Birthdate: 1676 AD
Birthplace: English Tangier, Morocco
Died: June 7, 1740

 41 Henry FitzRoy, 1st Duke of Grafton

Henry FitzRoy, 1st Duke of Grafton
Famous As: Noblemen
Birthdate: September 28, 1663
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Palace of Whitehall, London, England
Died: October 9, 1690

 42 Henry Ireton

Henry Ireton
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: 1611 AD
Birthplace: Attenborough, Beeston, England
Died: November 26, 1651

 43 Maximilian II Emanuel, Elector of Bavaria

Maximilian II Emanuel, Elector of Bavaria
Famous As: King
Birthdate: July 11, 1662
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Munich, Germany
Died: February 26, 1726

 44 Edward Montagu, 1st Earl of Sandwich

Edward Montagu, 1st Earl of Sandwich
Famous As: Admiral
Birthdate: July 27, 1625
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Barnwell, England
Died: May 28, 1672

 45 Thomas Harrison

Thomas Harrison
Famous As: English general
Birthdate: 1616 AD
Birthplace: Newcastle-under-Lyme, England
Died: October 13, 1660

 46 Piet Pieterszoon Hein

Piet Pieterszoon Hein
Famous As: Admiral
Birthdate: November 25, 1577
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Delfshaven, Rotterdam, Netherlands
Died: June 18, 1629

 47 John Campbell, 2nd Duke of Argyll

John Campbell, 2nd Duke of Argyll
Famous As: Official
Birthdate: October 10, 1680
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Petersham, England
Died: October 4, 1743

 48 Jean Bart

Jean Bart
Famous As: Military officer
Birthdate: October 21, 1650
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Dunkirk, France
Died: April 27, 1702

 49 Thomas Howard, 1st Earl of Suffolk

Thomas Howard, 1st Earl of Suffolk
Famous As: English commander
Birthdate: August 24, 1561
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: London, England
Died: May 28, 1626

 50 Maarten Tromp

Maarten Tromp
Famous As: General
Birthdate: April 23, 1598
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Breille, Netherlands
Died: August 10, 1653