Previous page Page 0 of 0  
Index |  History |  Highlights |  WhatWhenWhere

Bookmark and Share
Grunwald: 1410

The Poles and Lithuanians march towards the central stronghold of the Teutonic knights at Malbork, just south of Gdansk. They meet the enemy between the two villages of Grunwald and Tannenberg. The battle has subsequently been known by either of these names.

The German knights fight in the old style of chivalry, clad in heavy suits of armour and riding powerful chargers. But just as at Agincourt, five years later, ponderous medieval force proves vulnerable to more agile opponents. The Teutonic high master leads the charge in person. Wladyslaw (now aged about sixty) directs his Polish gentry from a strategic vantage point outside the fighting.


By the end of the day the Poles have outflanked and destroyed the Germans. The high master of the Teutonic order dies on the field, together with more than 200 of his knights. In the aftermath of the battle many Teutonic castles surrender without a fight, but Malbork itself (or Marienburg in German) is successfully defended against the Poles.

The prestige of the knights is broken by this defeat. Warfare between them and the Poles rumbles on intermittently for another half century, until Prussia is finally yielded to Poland in 1466 in the treaty of Torun.


Previous page Page 0 of 0  
Up to top of page GRUNWALD