|Hierarchy of naval officer ranks|
|Admiral of the navy
Admiral of the fleet • Fleet admiral
Schout-bij-nacht is a Dutch Naval rank, equivalent to rear admiral in the US Navy and Royal Navy. It is the second most junior admiral position of the Dutch Navy, ranking above commandeur ("commodore") and below a vice-admiraal ("vice admiral").
The rank of schout-bij-nacht originated between the 15th and 16th century. Translated as "watch-at-night", the schout-bij-nacht was the officer who supervised the ship when the captain was asleep.
In later times the schout-bij-nacht was also the officer who supervised an entire naval squadron, in the absence of a senior admiral, and by the 17th century schout-bij-nacht was the common rank held by the naval commander of a battle fleet's rear squadron.
In the 17th century the navies of Sweden and Denmark-Norway adopted the rank as schoutbynacht and the early Imperial Russian Navy as шаутбенахт (transliterated as "shautbenakht"). In 1724 the Russians, followed in 1771 by both the Swedish navy and the Dano-Norwegian navy changed the name of the rank to counter admiral (контр-адмирал in Russian, konteramiral in Swedish, kontreadmiral in Danish and Norwegian).
Famous schout-bij-nacht 
- Paulus Roelof Cantz'laar
- Karel Doorman
- Christoffel Middaghten (nl)
- Willem van der Zaen
- Johan Zoutman