Talk:Battle of Lechfeld (955)

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These numbers of soldiers are vastly exagerated. There were no more than 3500-4000 men in Otto's army and 6-8000 Magyars. (The whole Hungarian Tribal Feredation was unable to field 50 000 men, and this campaign was only a simple financial enterprise of some chief.)


I changed "Holy Roman Empire" to "East Francia", as the HRE did not exist in that form yet. Otto was crowned Emperor in 962, a decade after this battle. At the time of the battle, the region that became the HRE was known as the Kingdom of East Francia or the Kingdom of the Germans. -Alex, 03:26, 10 September 2006 (UTC)


What sources is this article using for the numbers and the casulties? For example The Seventy Great Battles of All Time (edited by Jeremy Black) gives the Hungarian strength at circa 25 000. -- 18:31, 21 September 2007 (UTC)

There are 2 versions to this Battle of Lechfeld[edit]

Sorry, but I had to delete this BS!

Pretty much all of that was debunked long ago. The rest is nationalistic wishful thinking. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:15, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

removed URL in sources[edit]

I removed the following URL from the sources on the main page - it points to a password-protected section about Widukind's account


(Florian Marquardt) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:49, 23 March 2008 (UTC)


I am skeptical about this line:

"The Magyars rode faster horses than the more heavily encumbered German knights and had a speed advantage in a normal situation."

My understanding is that while the Magyars had greater strategic mobility due to their extra horses and self-sufficiency, and greater long term endurance, the European warhorses were bred for strength and speed, while the steppe ponies were not. In a short sprint or charge the knights are faster I think. AThousandYoung (talk) 22:49, 31 May 2009 (UTC)

The steppe type warfare used special horses, called "hucul" which looked ponies, as the legs are relatively shorter, but were not ponies at all, and the horses were able to move more flexible than the heavy armored ones. The war is not always about sprints. Also, the Hungarian army was strong on shooting during running full speed, swinging the arrow backwards. Try to do it, it is extremely difficult... Abdulka (talk) 12:10, 15 July 2010 (UTC)

Just FYI, it is a myth that the Magyars had "steppe ponies". See Florin Curta on the Avar horses in The Other Europe in the Middle Ages (Curta et al, 2008) and also archaeo-DNA studies showing Magyar horses similar to today's Turkmen horse.

They had both a speed and range advantage.

STOP!!! The University of Szeged is on Wikipedia's Blacklist????? Who can I contact to change this very urgently!!!! vitéz 15:02, 5 August 2014 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Cavszabo (talkcontribs)

The Magyars used Akhal-Teke horses. Fakirbakir (talk) 18:41, 5 August 2014 (UTC)

Not quite, Fakirbakir. The article that was idiotically disallowed (University of Szeged research) argues that the horses investigated had a lot of DNA in common with the Akhal Teke. Close, but no cigar, as the saying goes! vitéz 17:34, 6 August 2014 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Cavszabo (talkcontribs)

German "Von's" in the 10th century?[edit]

Is there any source for the "von Hoehne"-family as participants of this battle? I never heard of anything like this and find it rather strange (maybe a spinn-off of some dubious family history?). You won't find anything about this on the German Wikipedia pages either under 'Lechfeld' or under 'Saxon(tribe)'. Therefore I would recommend to delete this passage. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:50, 10 August 2009 (UTC)


I question the neutrality of this article, calling Hungarians as "barbarians", having their activities called as "raids". There is a 19th century bias on this. The FACT is that Hungarians were fighting in West-Europe, but they were called by the emperors of the HRE to fight on some sides. Also please try to avoid to use Hungarians as "barbarians" as this is without base. At that time Hungarians had underwear, buttons, coat, boots, and were using shower, which was not present in Europe at that time. (So in this regard, one can call the Thuringians as barbars at that time.) BTW, it is fact, you can check it. Abdulka (talk) 12:16, 15 July 2010 (UTC)

"Most of the Hungarians reached home alive and in good health"[edit]

This is a Hungarian myth devised to lessen the extent of the defeat. All sources apart from the Hungarian ones agree that the Hungarian army was virtually extinguished. See: (talk) 13:34, 2 August 2010 (UTC)Martin Stübs

Ja wohl, it must be as you say, Mr German. You must be sure, but have you got any evidences? The Hungarians are not trying to make this war lesser important, in fact, this is the opposite, it is for the Hungarians a "great tragedy". Hungarians were freely raiding Germania (even Napoli) at that time, but suddenly these "raids" (some say they were not raids) stopped. But the mere evidence that the Hungarian army was NOT completely "extinguished" as you write, is that if it was such a big victory, then why did't the Germans chase the Hungarians all the way to Ural Mountains ?? In fact, the next attack was from Otto the Great, who was attacking Hungary with all armies of Germany but he was ruthfully destroyed at Battle of Pressburg! In fact if this was such a decisive victory for Germans then there would be no Hungary today (like there is no "Avar", "Cuman", "Yazig", "Sarmata", etc state). So the question remains, why didn't you chase the Hungarians?? Abdulka (talk) 15:23, 25 August 2010 (UTC)
Well, Mr. Hungarian, funny that you ask for evidence while not reading the referenced sources and without providing evidence of your own. Yes, the Hungarian army was fleeing and the Germans chased them. But they didn't had to chase them to the Ural since they killed or captured many of them including their leaders Bulcsú and Lehel still inside Germany. They were brought to Regensburg and executed publicly. Otto had no interest to invade Hungary since his absence would have helped his many enemies within Germany (who already had made alliances with the Hungarians in the past). He had just crushed a rebellion by his own son. So he planed in advance to annihilate the Hungarian army decisively and he had prepared many ambushes. Also many farmers took vengeance and ambushed fleeing scattered Hungarians by themselves. So there was no point in chasing a army which no longer existed. Also Otto had to fight off another raid by Obotrites in the very same year and could not leave anyway.
BTW Otto has also never attacked Hungary "with all armies of Germany". The "Battle of Pressburg" was in 907. Otto was born in 912. Also it was a battle between Bavarians under Luitpold only and the Hungarians. But that happend 48 years (!) before the Battle of Lechfeld.
Yes, I know that the Hungarian "Gesta Hungarorum" written about 200 years after the events and other Hungarian sources tried to tell different stories like that thousands of German hostages were executed in revenge or about a second a Hungarian army supposedly raiding again in Germany, even that Lehel supposedly killed Otto etc.. But this is nonsense since after his "death" (according to the Hungarian stories) he went on to become German king and was crowned emperor by the pope in 962. There is also no evidence for the other claims. For example there are several records about the Hungarian raids and their menace but they stopped after 955. The time after 955 became known as the Ottonian Renaissance in Germany. Therefore these stories are rejected by most serious historians. Within a few years the Hungarians settled down, became Christians and founded a Christian state. They also stopped the raiding business and later even asked Otto for Christian missionars and Gezas son Stephan I. married Giselle of Bavaria. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:06, 28 August 2010 (UTC)

Looking at the article & attendant comments here it is apparent that the information provided in the article is not balanced; more Hungarian revisionist than an attempt at a sythesised middle ground. German sources will eulogise about Otto's victory & Magyar sources will look to do some mitigation in the eyes of history; however their content of neither is thoroughly gone over in this article, nor is reputable academic opinion concerning the veracity of these sources' content noted. Few dispute a German pursuit which suggests a Magyar route; with an eye to the Magyar military record (& that of any other nomad army) a pursuit against anything but a dispersed & demoralised enemy would result in the tables being turned on the pursuer. Furthermore suggestion that the lack of national scale counterstroke indicates a more balanced outcome is ignorant firstly of the limited strategic scope of medieval warfare & also the German recognition of their more limited capacity vs. the Magyars when operating beyond their own military architecture & terrain. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:11, 1 September 2010 (UTC)

removed OR - the point of this commentary is well-taken, however - needs sourcing[edit]

"Medieval numbers should be taken with a pinch of salt. The 8,000 German and Czech knights cited by Beeler are close to the maximum that could be supplied by 10th century logistics in medieval Central Europe. It is possible that the Magyars and Otto's army were of a similar size. The 50,000 given by the chroniclers is unlikely. Otto was a shrewd general and it would have been reckless for him to take on an army five times larger than his own. The 35,000 Magyar dead is also unlikely. The Magyars rode faster horses than the more heavily encumbered German knights and had a speed advantage in a normal situation. When large numbers of Magyars were killed, it was likely because they were caught between Conrad and the Swabians, trapped by the steep river bank or surprised by the local militias. The casualties stated for both sides may be too large by a factor of ten." <---- Warning posted April 2009 to source these comments, no action taken as of March 2011

A good, scholarly paragraph - properly footnoted with reliable sources not rooted in nationalism or pure speculation - about the veracity of Medieval sources has a place in the article, if someone will do the work. HammerFilmFan (talk) 22:00, 24 March 2011 (UTC) HammerFilmFan

Edited article big time[edit]

I edited this article big time. Maybe it should be regraded. This article is now very well cited. — Preceding unsigned comment added by SteveMooreSmith3 (talkcontribs) 21:31, 11 July 2011 (UTC)

SECOND Battle of Lechfeld[edit]

I see my correction to the current WIki item was removed. I am now writing a new article on the first battle of Lechfeld, on June 22, 910. This will have current historiography as well as medieval sources mentioned in it. I am sorry that you feel you must instantly remove material you are not aware of. Now I will have to go and first do the article, then add the new material to this one.

According to Wiki guidelines material should not be one-sided. It is quite one sided to talk of only one battle when there were two! Incidentally, even on English Wiki, the Battle of Pressburg section "Aftermath" mentions it: After the battle, the Hungarians occupied lands up to the Enns River in the west and began punitive expeditions, usually one per year, against the German principalities. In 910, the Hungarians defeated a combined German army on the Lechfeld.[1]

This is not some new discovery! It's on Britannica and in all this history books, about time to put it up finally on Wikipedia, too.

Will come back and make necessary repairs later.vitéz 17:05, 2 August 2014 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Cavszabo (talkcontribs)

I agree, we have to distinguish between first and second battle of Lechfelds (See: The First Battle of Lechfeld). I only remarked that hu wikipedia is an inappropriate source. Fakirbakir (talk) 21:54, 2 August 2014 (UTC)

There is no "First Battle of Lechfeld" and "Second Battle of Lechfeld" in historiography. Furthermore "The" definite article is unusual here. Battle in 955 is more common, so Battle of Lechfeld and Battle of Lechfeld (910) would be a better choice. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:38, 2 August 2014 (UTC) It is standard practice in history to call two battles "first" and "second". Why should we write WIkipedia differently? vitéz 11:47, 5 August 2014 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Cavszabo (talkcontribs)

I see a problem if there is this small bit on the Lechfeld Battle of 910. It was arguably bigger than the one of 955, but no-one has any reliable numbers. So shall I go ahead with my new article, or fix the existing entry, which is far too short for a key battle? vitéz 12:22, 5 August 2014 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Cavszabo (talkcontribs) As to unsigned, historiography always speaks of the numbers of battles in the same place, especially when fought between the same opponents. I am in favour of working against the existing ignorance in the English-language publications. Ignorance and lack of knowledge is not what encylcopeadias should be promoting, surely? vitéz 14:51, 5 August 2014 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Cavszabo (talkcontribs)

The River Iller vs. the River Lech[edit]

In the section "Background" (c.f. "Gerhard writes that the Hungarian forces advanced to the Iller River and placed Augsburg under siege. At this time, Augsburg did not quite touch the left bank of the river, upon which it was situated."), the article is written in a manner that suggests Augsburg lies upon the River Iller, which is in fact more than 20 miles away from the city. The river in the second sentence should be the Lech. This misleading wording may come from misreading the primary source: Though I haven't checked Gerhard's Vita Sancti Uodalrici, it seems possible that it says something along the lies of "the Hungarians advanced as far as the River Iller". I would try to fix this myself... but I've found it insulting when bots and overzealous editors have deleted my talk page edits pointing out factual errors based upon me not knowing "proper procedure". Good job alienating those who want to help, wikipedia! — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:35, 26 September 2016 (UTC)

  1. ^ Wikipedia. "Battle of Pressburg: Aftermath". Retrieved 02/08/2014.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)