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Battle of Nördlingen (1634)

History -- Military history -- List of battles

This article is about the Battle of Nördlingen fought in 1634 in Germany as part of the Thirty Years War. See also Battle of Nördlingen (1645)

Battle of Nördlingen
Dates of battleSeptember 5 & September 6, 1634
ConflictThirty Years' War
Battle beforeBattle of Lützen (1632)
Battle afterBattle of Wittstock
Site of battlenear Nördlingen, Germany
Combatant 1Sweden, Saxony
led byField Marshal Gustav Horn,
Duke Bernhard of Saxe Weimar
Forces16000 infantry, 9000 cavalry, and 20 guns
Combatant 2Holy Roman Empire
led byFerdinand of Austria, Cardinal-Infante of Spain,
King Ferdinand of Hungary,
General Matthias Gallas
Forces21000 infantry, 14000 cavalry, and 60 guns
resultdecisive Catholic victory

Table of contents
1 Prelude
2 Description of the battle
3 Aftermath


After the Protestant victory at Lutzen, two years before, the Swedes failed to follow up their victory due to the death of their King Gustavus Adolphus. As a result, the Imperial forces regained the initiative. In 1634 they occupied the town of Regensburg. Threatening to advance further into Saxony, they started to besiege Nördlingen. The Protestants realized they had to make some attempt to relieve the town, and planned a night attack.

Description of the battle

The Protestants' intended assault went wrong when their forces got cluttered up with artillery and supply wagons in front of the infantry. This gave the imperial forces time to prepare. Swedish infantry ended up in an unsupported attack on the Imperial positions. Nevertheless they pushed on and succeeded in driving back one Imperial flank. The Imperial commander responded by a co-ordinated attack on the Saxon lines, which broke and collapsed. Horn was captured, and the Protestant allies lost 12,000 to 14,000 men.


This battle marked the end of Swedish intervention in the Thirty Years War. With Imperial forces threatening dominance in Germany, France stepped in.