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Battle of Wimpfen

History -- Military history -- List of battles

In the Battle of Wimpfen, a battle in the Bohemian Revolt period of the Thirty Years' War, took place on May 6, 1622, where the forces of the Holy Roman Empire and Catholic League under Marshall Tilly scored a victory over the Protestant forces of General Mansfield and Margrave Friedrich Georg.

After the fall of the Bohemian capital of Prague following the Battle of White Mountain, Margrave Friedrich Georg of Baden-Durlach decided to continue the battle and oppose Tilly and Cordoba at Wimpfen. The Catholic army was ill supplied but were in greater number.

Friedrich Georg, who had joined forces with von Mansfeld, took up a strong defensive position, with his guns on a low hill supervising the flat battlefield. A cannonade followed by a cavalry charge put heavy pressure on the Catholic line. But a lucky countershot exploded the protestant ammo arsenal. The Catholic forces counterattacked the hill and drove off the protestant armies after a fierce fight in which both sides took heavy casualties.

His defeat meant the loss of the small principality for the protestant cause. Tilly moved his army on to occupy Heidelberg.

The story of the 400 citizens of Pforzheim who sacrificed themselves for their prince after the battle has been shown by modern research to be a myth.