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Battle of White Mountain

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In the Battle of White Mountain, 1620 November 8, an army 15,000 Bohemians and mercenaries under Christian of Anhalt[?] were routed by 20,000 men of the combined armies of the Holy Roman Empire and of the Catholic League[?] under Tilly, at Czech Bílá Hora, near Prague. The battle marked the end of Bohemian period[?] of the Thirty Years' War.

Battle of White Mountain
WarThirty Years' War
Location:Bílá Hora near Prague
Date:November 8
Combatant1Bohemia
Led byPrince Christian of Anhalt-Bernberg
Forces15,000 men from Bohemia and the Palatinate
Combatant2Catholic League[?]
Led byField Marshall Count Tilly[?]
Forces25,000 men from the empire, the Catholic League, and Polish troops

Prelude

Initially the revolt of the protestants in Bohemia went well, and they broke out of their isolated political position by electing Frederick V, Elector Palatine as their king. But things changed when The Duke of Bavaria regrouped the forces of the Catholic League[?]. Using his numerical superiority, he sent Tilly to march straight to Prague.

The battle

The Czech commander, Christian Anhalt, assembled his troops, and deployed his troops on the slopes of a hill (Bílá Hora in Czech, Weissenberg in German, both meaning White Mountain) blocking the road to Prague. His troops occupied a solid position, with his right flank covered by a hunting castle, his left covered by a brook, and a small brook with some moors in front of him.

Tilly observed the enemy position, and sent his well trained men over a small bridge crossing the brook. In just 2 hours of heavy fighting they smashed through the center of the enemy line. This decided the battle.

The aftermatch

With the Czech army destroyed, Tilly entered Prague. Freedom of religion came to an end, 27 leaders of the insurrection were killed, and protestants fled the country. King Frederick fled the country too (hence his nickname the winter king). The battle ended the independence of Bohemia for 300 years.

Spanish troops, seeking to encircle their rebellious Dutch provinces, seized the Palatinate. With protestantism threatening to be overrun in Germany, Denmark entered the struggle.



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