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The river Kongeå (in German Königs Au) defines the border between Northern and Southern Jutland in Jutland in Denmark.[1] It rises southeast of Vejen and Vamdrup and after about 50 kilometres (31 mi) flows into the North Sea north of Ribe.

In the Middle Ages it was called Skodborg Å after the royal castle Skodborghus that was at a crossing south of Vejen.[2] For centuries, there was a customs border near Kongeå that separated the Kingdom of Denmark from the duchy of Schleswig. From 1864 to 1920 it was (except for near the North Sea) the border between Denmark and Germany.[1]

The Kongeå is mentioned (as "Skotborg river") in the Heimskringla[3] in a description of the 1043 battle where King Magnus I of Norway and Denmark defeated a large army of Slavs from the current Mecklenburg region at Lyrskov Hede (Hlyrskog Heath). They had invaded southern Denmark in retaliation for a Viking attack on Jomsborg, which at the time was the Slavic kingdom's primary town on Wolin island.


Coordinates: 55°23′N 8°39′E / 55.383°N 8.650°E / 55.383; 8.650