The ‘de Gillès’ branch

The Knight Jacques-Louis Gillès (1728-1780) The Knight Jacques-Louis Gillès (1728-1780) travelled a great deal from 1749 from to 1762. And during this period, the diplomatic assignments and the elite positions held by his cousins Jacques, Paul-Abraham and Samuël Gillès in the United Provinces, and the fact that his father was once an attaché, made it easier for the Knight to gain access to various Courts, including those of Vienna, Versailles, Rome, Naples, Modena, Sardinia, Prussia and Poland.

In 1764, he was appointed by the Elector of Cologne, Count of Koningseck Rothefels, to travel with him to Frankfurt to help in the election and the coronation of the King of the Romans. In July of that year he was present during the appointment of Count Charles d’Oultremont, Prince Bishop of Liège.

The Knight Jacques-Louis Gillès wrote several memoires on the history of his family.

As a reminder, Jean-Philippe, Jacques-Louis and Cornil-Jacques Gillès had their nobility confirmed on 13 September 1752 by the Empress Maria Theresa, and were also granted the personal title of Knight, with ennoblement where appropriate.

In the wake of his second marriage, Jacques-Louis Gillès left Amsterdam to settle in Lille towards 1766. He and his descendants were generally referred in France as “de Gillès”. His descendents subsequently left for Amiens, where they formed two family branches: the one remained in the Somme, while the other settled in Normandy.

This French branch, several members of which are still living in Northern France, has maintained several contracts and close family ties of friendship with the Belgian branch of the family.