Battle of Axtorna

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Battle of Axtorna
Part of Northern Seven Years' War
Slaget vid Axtorna.jpg
Old danish propaganda image of the battle
Date20 October 1565
LocationAxtorna, close to Falkenberg, Sweden
57°02′24″N 12°38′35″E / 57.040°N 12.643°E / 57.040; 12.643Coordinates: 57°02′24″N 12°38′35″E / 57.040°N 12.643°E / 57.040; 12.643
Result Danish victory
Flag of Sweden.svg Sweden Flag of Denmark.svg Denmark–Norway
Commanders and leaders
Jakob Henriksson Hästesko Daniel Rantzau
8,100 infantry
3,000 cavalry
47 artillery pieces
6,000 infantry
1,400 cavalry
21 artillery pieces
Casualties and losses
1,200–1,700 300–2,500
The fields where the battle took place. The Photo is approximately taken from the Danish position facing north towards the Swedish position

The Battle of Axtorna or simply Axtorna, was a battle fought between the Kingdom of Sweden and the Kingdom of Denmark 20 October 1565 at Axtorna, a small village in what is today Falkenberg Municipality, Halland County in south-western Sweden.


The battle[edit]

The Danish commander Daniel Rantzau had been forced to yield the fortress Varberghus to the Swedes on 15 September 1565, after they had taken Ny Varberg, then Halland's largest city. Rantzau received the news that a Swedish army of superior strength led by Jacob Henriksson Hästesko was approaching from the east forced him to move his forces toward Falkenberg. Rantzau had decided to commit to combat since the Swedish force had just arrived from its march and hadn't rearranged into a militarily cohesive unit.


The Danes won as a consequence of their superior cavalry tactic[1] and Rantzau became a renowned general after the battle and throughout the war. Despite the victory and the capture of the Swedish artillery, the Danish had suffered great losses and stayed near the battlefield for a week, while large portions of the Swedish army were intact.


  1. ^ Svenska Slagfält: "Axtorna 1565: En fråga om kavalleritaktik" (2003) pp. 69-76

External links[edit]