Talk:Battle on the Ice
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- 1 Article name
- 2 Name
- 3 alternative interpretation
- 4 Original research
- 5 Citation needed
- 6 "Battle of the Ice", facts and legend
- 7 Order
- 8 wasn't actually a battle at all
- 9 method of casualty calculation.
- 10 Legacy section
- 11 The implications of loss
- 12 Trivia.....
- 13 Troop numbers
- 14 Requested move 14 February 2015
- 15 Ice breaking and people drowning
- 16 External links modified
I moved this page to a more direct translation from Russian and German. This in order to make place for a famous battle in English heroic legend and in Norse mythology, which has no other name but the Battle on the Ice. I hope that no one minds.--Wiglaf 06:41, 11 May 2005 (UTC)
- Actually the proper name of this battle is the Battle OF the Ice not the Battle ON the Ice, so I don't think anyone will mind.
- If you want to use a direct translation from German, then you should use Battle on Lake Peipus, which I think is the best version. regards, http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benutzer:Torfgeist
Why was this article moved to a rather general "Battle of the Ice" anyway? Is it about a hockey game or something? Was there a discussion with a consensus? The name Battle of Lake Peipus or even better Battle on Lake Peipus is much more specific, and Peipus is even used by a rather neutral Italian artist. Is Peipus a place name which considered inconvenient from some POV, or what was the reason to move?
I suggest the move to "Battle on Lake Peipus".--Matthead 22:37, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
Some search results... Google Books:
- Battle of Lake Peipus: 8
- Battle on Lake Peipus: 9
- Battle of the Ice: 14
- Battle on the Ice: 242 (most referring to Eisenstein's Alexander Nevsky)
- Battle of Lake Peipus: 5
- Battle on Lake Peipus: 8
- Battle of the Ice: 6
- Battle on the Ice: 64 (again, most referring to the film)
The current name seems fine to me. Olessi 18:49, 8 June 2006 (UTC)
- That has little relevance here. What is relevant, however, is the terminology most frequently used in English to describe the battle. Olessi 19:44, 8 June 2006 (UTC)
- Ghirla's POV is his POV, but meaningless for English wikipedia, even though it would be interesting if his "losers don't deserve to name a battle" theory would be extended to e.g. Battle of Cannae with a Carthagian name, and Battle of the Little Bighorn with one in Lakota-Northern Cheyenne tongue. --Matthead 05:24, 9 June 2006 (UTC)
- That has little relevance here. What is relevant, however, is the terminology most frequently used in English to describe the battle. Olessi 19:44, 8 June 2006 (UTC)
Google counts are funny, especially if they are executed properly. Sorry Olessi, but you should try a little harder and make sure that at least the year is mentioned - if not, its surely no historical account of this battle.
- 241 "Battle on the Ice" - the rather general description name is quite common .. but about what is it?
- 40 "Battle on the Ice" +1242 The majority is about something else, not the proper year
- 7 "Battle on the Ice" +1242 -peipus -peipsi -eisenstein
- 30 "Battle of the Ice"
- 6 "Battle of the Ice" +1242
- 4 "Battle of the Ice" +1242 -peipus -peipsi -eisenstein
Google scholar is similar:
- 64 "Battle on the Ice" The top hit is about Vikings, and others about Film/Music follow
- 5 "Battle on the Ice" +1242 -peipus -peipsi -eisenstein
If it is made sure that it is a history book mentioning the year 1242, and not one about Vikings, Norway, Eisenstein or Prokofiev, the counts for "Battle of/on the Ice" drop to one-digit numbers - surely not outnumbering the "Lake Peipus" variants. This article needs to be moved to the proper battlefield, and that is the name of the lake it took place. Sorry for the Russians which chose not to use their name of the lake at all. See also the Battle of the Nations which is at Battle of Leipzig. --Matthead 05:24, 9 June 2006 (UTC)
- If you feel the title should be moved, feel free to use Wikipedia:Requested moves. Olessi 15:53, 9 June 2006 (UTC)
- This is all very clever, but why is it called in the Alexander Nevsky article "Battle on Lake Chudskoe" without a link to this site? 126.96.36.199 20:41, 15 July 2007 (UTC)
- I support the name Battle on Lake Peipus as this is the way I learned it in German Gymnasium, and as it clearly includes the location. A "battle on the ice" could be anywhere not close enough to the equator.
- I had never heard of a "Battle of the Ice" until I saw this article relating to Al Nevsky in 1242 - and then I thought I had the wrong battle. I have always heard the battle referred to as the "Battle of Lake Peipus", and "Battle of the Ice" is about as specific as calling Waterloo the "Battle in Belgium". If only for the sake of clarity, the article should be renamed. 188.8.131.52 (talk) 04:43, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
I've removed the “alternative interpretation” section of this article. I'm a graduate student in Russian history and I can safely say that this information is factually wrong. If someone disagrees, please post any references you have to any historical work that supports these claims. I'd love to read them, thanks.
- I added back in the "inaccurate information" a few weeks ago. I edited it according to information found in Eric Christiansen's The Northern Crusades and William Urban's The Teutonic Knights. Christiansen references the First Novgorod Chronicle and the Livonian Rhyme-Chronicle, while Urban focuses more on the Rhyme-Chronicle. Urban is the one who believes the traditional information on the Livonian contingent to be inaccurate (Grand Master, Livonian vs. Prussian knights etc.). Christiansen is more traditional, as he first quotes extensively from the Novgorod Chronicle, and then balances that with information from the Rhyme-Chronicle. I am not trying to present the "traditional" interpretation as being false. Rather, I have books which present information contrary to the traditional interpretation, and feel it noteworthy to include information from both the First Novgorod Chronicle and the Livonian Rhyme-Chronicle. Olessi 18:09, 25 May 2005 (UTC)
- I'm glad to see someone responded. I've read Christenson's book and although I'm unfamiliar with The Teutonic Knights, I've read another book on this subject written by William Urban, called The Baltic Crusade. In my view neither of these authors definitively support any sort of reinterpretation of the evens of this battle. First of all Christenson hardly even mentions this battle, there is barely a page devoted to it in his book. All he does is mention a passage from the Novgorod chronicle and then mentions another passage from the Livonian Rhymed chronicle. There is no analysis of the battle or the sources, it's virtually a side note in his book. Urban (in The Baltic Crusade) does go into some detail describing the battle and he does mention the Livonian Rhymed chronicle in detail. However he himself fully acknowledges the details of the battle, he says directly that the battle involved a large number of combatants on each side and the course of the battle as traditionally presented (Russian archers and the cavalry entering the battle, the knights retreating over the lake and drowning, etc.) is in fact accurate. He also clearly writes that the Livonian Brothers of the Sword ceased to exists in 1237 when they were merged with the Teutonic Knights. So, it was indeed the Teutonic Knights that attacked Russian territories. He does say that it's possible that the remnants of the Livonian Brothers within the Teutonic Knights pushed for this campaign, while others were not so sure of the wisdom of attacking the Russians. To me however, that seems more of an internal political matter within the Teutonic order rather then anything that is directly related to the historical interpretation of the battle itself. Furthermore, he fully admits that this is merely speculation on his part. Even if he is correct in this case, that does not change the scale, tactics, or significance of this battle. Which brings me to my last point. Both of these authors reference the Livonian Rhymed chronicle in their books, what is not mentioned however is that this chronicle is notorious biased and inaccurate. The first thing to mention is, unlike the Novgorod Chronicles, this is not a primary source, it was written over a decade after the battle. Likewise it's biased to the point of absurdity, in Urban's book he quotes a passages where the author claims that Nevsky's forces outnumbered the Teutons 60-1, something that Urban himself points out is blatantly made-up. Here is a link to a small article which describes the Livonian Rhymed chronicle as a historical source. As any historian will tell you these kind of sources can virtually never be taken as the truth. In any case, I think my point stands, what was written in the "alternative interpretation" simply does not stand up to the historical facts.
- Thank you for the clarification! I am fine with the current version then. Olessi 11:52, 26 May 2005 (UTC)
- The current version falls short of an unbiased and neutral article. It would do more justice to an encyclopaedia article once the multiple allegorical references and pro-Russian ideological statements are removed. Novgorod Chronicles are fine and dandy, but one would probably benefit more from knowing, e.g., how many, if any, Estonians participated in the battle, what was the name of the "Grand Master", etc. -- even if that information is from other non-Novgorodian sources. Last, but not least, what is the source (legend?) for the claim under the picture of Kuremäe nunnery that Russian soldiers fallen in the Battle on Lake Peipus had been buried there? Kuremäe lies quite a distance from the battle site, in Virumaa (northeastern Estonia) and moreover, in an area that territory was under Danish control in 1242. 08 July 2005
- There was always a relatively few number of actual Teutonic Knights, but each one had numerous foot soldiers and sergeants fighting with him. In some chronicles, such "grunts" were expendable and focus was put on the fallen noble knights instead. Olessi 16:30, 5 April 2007 (UTC)
Most of the Knights were German, although there also were a large number of Danes, and the army also included large numbers of Swedish and Estonian mercenaries, there are different figures of how much knights there were, some say 10-12 thousand, some say 400, however, there is a version that there were only 2000-2500 actually german knights, the most forces of Order were probably composed of Estonians, Swedish and other mercenaries. And taking in to account at crushing defeat of knights from turks on 9 april 1241, the version that there were not many teutonic knights, but most were mercenaries from Sweden, Estonia and other. Therefore, Russian forces were numerically a bit more than that of knights, 10000-12000 from Teotonic knights, 15000-17000 from the russian side.
I got really curious after numbers as well, i would think the Livonian Order at that time would field at least 400-500 knights, or heavy cavalry.that would put the total number of their army at at least 1500-2000. The story here seems contradicting that. Then again they had some tradition of storming headlong into disaster and perhaps it was only a Dorpat detachment that fought. Novgorod would have fielded 5000 man rather easily and perhaps more as a major part of the city was Estonians with a grudge against the Teutonic ordres, wich explains after reading the Estonian contribution here, the portraying of prisoners as betrayers, it is a bit strange however when no archeological remains are known, common sense would expect the battle to be fought close to land and so does apparently the folklore, maybe the army went through the ice while crossing and most of the prisoners were survivors caught on the Russian side. Lake Peipsi sedimentation rate explains a lot after all, artefacts would be many many meters deep by now, anecdotically I think they could theoretically be 100s..184.108.40.206 (talk) 21:52, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
in the year of the battle, the Order had a max of about 350 knights in whole livland. (ordens-chronik), very unlikely that they all have been at that skirmirsh. all in all about 1000 - 1500 man fighting for the teutons. 220.127.116.11 (talk) 04:49, 15 July 2010 (UTC)
I added Template:Fact to "the Grand Master, some bishops, and a handful of mounted knights" as the quotation marks indicate the text is quoted from somewhere- if so, from where? Aside from unreferenced wiki-mirrors, Google gives me no indication that the Grand Master was there., This link from a 1900 book by Alfred Nicolas Rambaud indicates the Grand Master was not there. I have not found any sites indicating that Grand Master Gerhard von Malberg was at the battle. If he was there, he would have led the crusaders, not Hermann of Buxhoeveden. Olessi 18:57, 16 June 2006 (UTC)
- Vladimir Yershov played "Grand Master Von Balk" in Alexander Nevsky, presumably meaning de:Hermann von Balk, but Balk died in 1239. Olessi 19:29, 16 June 2006 (UTC)
Well, the Grand Master was from the Livonian Order, not the Teutonic hochmeister.
- Would you happen to have a source for that? The Livonian Order had merged into the Teutonic Order by this time; there was no Livonian Grand Master. The Landmeister of the Livonian Order at this time was Dietrich von Grüningen, but I haven't found any texts saying he was at the battle. The leader of the Catholic army was Bishop Hermann von Buxhoeveden of Dorpat (and who was not a Grand Master). Links mentioning a Grand Master being at the battle seem to be referencing Alexander Nevsky. Olessi 18:16, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
the grandmaster..his name just slipped away....was at Outremer at that time. his second in command, the landmeister von Grüningen, still signing bulls and papers at that time 18.104.22.168 (talk) 04:52, 15 July 2010 (UTC)
"Battle of the Ice", facts and legend
I can see that someone have deleted the common Estonian (and Latvian) folklore which I described here of the "Battle which was never fought" on the ice of Peipsen Lake. Or was it after all in Peipsen Lake? A closer study the area is important to study the claimed battlefield. What is for sure from written German sources recarding the Teutonic Knights, is that the Knights cathered together at the place then called Rabenstein. Some Knight Brothers were missing from Dorpat and Hermann von Buxhoeveden waited for them. According to other sources, as written by Kari Alenius and Toivo U. Raun "Viron, Latvian ja Liettuan Historia" and "Viron Historia", some, but not many, Estonian had been forced to join the Knights as footmen. There were much greater number of Latgales.
But where is Rabenstein? It makes little difficult for many users to locate the place. It is known now a days Räpina and the Knights most probably had some celebrations there because of Eastern 1242. Peharps the opening of new Roman Catholic church when the Bishop Hermann from Tarbata (Dorpat) was also personally in present. According to current Estonian map there is a place named Ristipalo (Crossburn) located about two km south east toward the confluence of Vöhandujogi and Mödajogi located about four km inland from Bay of Raigla on Pihkvajärv (Pskovskoje Ozero). The word Ristipalo (Crossburn) can mean also a place where cross was burned. In this case maybe later burned Roman Catholic church. The current Räbina Lutherian church was built in 1630s by the time of "Golden Swedish Time" in 1625 - 1717 as the Estonians used to call Swedish - Finnish rule later, when compared to the Russian rule in 1721 - 1918.
The Estonian side is only separated from Novgorodian side by less than five kilpometre bread strait and there are two small islands near Estonian shore on Pihkvajärv / Pskovskoje Ozero. The open iceway to the opposite shore to Cape of Mtesh is less than three kilometres.
If we now look to the Mustneem Puolsaar (Peninsula) on Novgorod side opposite Räbina and Meerapalu we find out some interesting geographical factors. Most of Mustneem (Cape of Black) is covered by inhospitable fen (swamp) landscape. This area had in 1242 only few samall villages as it has even today. On the south coast is only three villages; Peskovitsa, Lutva and Terepista all located along Mustjogi (Black River).
On the north coast along the Remda River there were only few small settlements, small villages Jaama, Lodgoje (on river lake Lodgoje) and Remola. On the shore was Samolva fisherman village.
On the west coast where open fen land ends were two small fisherman settlements, now a days still named Tshudskaja Rusditsa and Tshudskije Zahodo. All these place names gives an impression of original Fenno Baltic population which is infact proven as late as in 1927, taken from maps showing the area inhabited by Estonians and Vatjas in addition to mysterious Tshuudis.
The whole population of the Mustneem Peninsula must have been less than 1.000 inhabitants. The place where the "Great Battle of the Ice" (according to Russian topografic map) was fought on Mustneem Peninsula is located north west of Pskov / Pihkva / Pleskau / Pihkova / Pleskavas / Tolova / Plecekowe / Plicekowe / Plescekowe / Plescecowiec about 75 kilometres.
The battle place is marked to Russian maps on the western edge of north shore of Mustneem Peninsula where the land sharply turns to south.
Between Räbina (Rabenstein) and Mehikoorma (Usmeme) fisherman village (in 1929 total population of Räbinä county was 2795) Pihkvajärv / Ozero Pskovskaja the lake is known in Estonian side as Lämmijärv and in Russian side as Teploje Ozero. The name Peipsijärv / Peipsijärvi / Peipussee etc means that northern side of island chane Piirisaar (Border Island) locateded on Estonian side, and Ozero Osolets, Ozero Stanok, Ozero Voronij, Ozero Gorodets, Ozero Gorshuka located nearest of mainland, less than distance of two kilometres of Samolva fisherman village.
It was on the strait less than two kilometres wide between the marshy mainland fenland and Ozero Gorodets where the battle,according to Russian sources, took place on April 5, 1242. took place and according to written German chronicle on April 11, 1242 six days later.
The shortest route over the ice from Estonian side to Russian side is not at all here. It is between Mehikoorma (Usmene) on Estonian side and Pnjevo on the Russian side where the distance is about two kilometres of open iceway between the shores.
Everyone who has served in army knows well that it is the footman (that times infantry) who rules the speed on which army is marching. And that is in northern areas with a load of 30 kilos less than six kilometres per hour (exactly 5.71 km measured with MTM or Refa time measurement methods). And this in good conditions, witout any snow cover. When moving with skies this is doubled in snow cover. Those who have visited in this area of Estonia knows well that usually in April the snow has smelted away but the lakes have still somekind of ice cover and that is also rapidly smelting, starting from the shore side. We know only from one mention in Estonian folklore of the "Battle which was not fought on the lake of Peipsenjärv", that it was foggy morning. Unfortunately it is not known what kind of weather it was on the afternoon when the battle was said to taken place. Why the Teutonic Knights started to ride about 35 kilometres toward north from Rabenstein, followed by their Latgale and Estonian footmen? This would have taken at least six hours to reach Merepaalu Puolsaar (Peninsula). By this time the footmen would be quite tired and so the horses with the armoured protection covers. Did they choose route over ice by riding from island to island or sraight form shore to shore over open lake, a distance of about six kilometres.
And Aleksandr Nevski (Nevajokelainen), collecting Novgorod mititia, for sure also footmen, marching toward north west over the distance of 75 kilometres, a march which took at least 15 hours, probably much longer time, over the country side crossing flooding Starejeva, Talba, Lipenka, Tshernaja and Rovja Rivers to reach with his troops of 10.000 - 15.000 men the supposed battle place. What effect did the well known "rasputsa" have for this march? Why concentrate his troops to the swamps which effectively restricts even footmen to make any fast movements to say anything of Novgorodian cavalry units. Technically impossible in such weather conditions during that time a year. How was a army of 10.000 to 15.000 men suppied? Aleksandr must have been emptied both Novgorod and Pskov in addition to surrounding coutryside from all food supplies which,by that time a year, were the rest what was left of previous year harvest.
Why the spring thaw stopped Batu Khan and his professional Mongol army between Torzhok and Novgorod just in spring 1239, but not Aleksandr Nevski´s army in spring 1242. Batu Khan also discovered himself the power of weather conditions when he failed to take Novgorod. The thaw turned the hard,firm paths into swollen rivers of rushing water. Horses fell. The riders, trying to raise them, were themselves exhausted. It was decided to call to the gods for help through a woman shaman. She climbed to a tall pine. The pine leaned over, then crashed on the snow, braking its frozen surface. The shaman floundered, sucked down in the black, sticky mud beneath the snow. The Mongol army commander rode forward with a lasso to aid her, but his hoese sank into the morass. The head went under. No trace remained of the two sacrifices to the hungry swamp. The thousand captains stood in close circle, eagerly waiting to hear what their commander had to say. Batu Khan said:" Up till now there has been nothing that could stop me. My army has come across deserts, swum the mighty river Itil and many other great Oruss rivers. Now the evil Oruss mangus try to destroy all my soldiers, and the rivers melt and turn the ways into seas. I will go back. We will rest in Kiptshak steppes." "Back to the steppes," cried the Mongols. The joyous news spread through the whole Batu army, spread out along the black, mud-chured trial. This saved Novgorod and its Princes.
From all these evidents we can strongly assume that the Teutonic knights spent Eastern period of 1242 in Rabenstein and the battle or skirmish took place after Eastern. This also support the theory that the Teutonic Knights took another route toward Pskov and Aleksandr´s Army, which could not have more than in maximum about 5.000 men, most of them collected from Novgorod and Pskov half trained merchant militia forces, stopped at the flooding Starejeva and Talba Rivers about 25 kilometres north of Pskov. Meanwhile the Teutonic Knights rode southward from Rabenstein to Värskä River, had problems to cross it, and it was here that someone of them had an idea to use still existing ice cover on Pihkvajärv / Pskovskoje Ozero. They stayed there overnight and early next morning when the temperature was still under freezing point, rode to the ice of the lake. From mainland they rode at first to Kivisaar / Ostrova Kamenka. From Kivisaar there is open ice to Valgsaar / Ostrov Beloje about eight kilometres. Then to Ostrov Talaben a distance of two kilometres and from there they advanced just to the place of mouths of Rivers Starejeva and Talba where by their bad luck Aleksandr Nevsky´s militia and couple of hundred horsemen were staying, stopped by spring thawn. I believe it was here where the battle or skirmish took place. It seems that in reality the Knights lost about 40 men and six knights were taken prisoners. If it is to believe of this old Estonian / Latvian folklore they seems to have been those who survived, when the ice simply broke under the attacking Teutonic Knights and most of them were drowned with their horses.Alfred Rambaud, using his sources writes; "In the ice of Lake Peipus, Alexandr killed 400 of them (number of drowned?) took 50 prisoners. (number of them actually killed?)
And how the story continues? According to Alfred Rambaud "Russia" (1900) and other literature published in Imperial Russia, Alexander immediately after his triumphic return to Pskov arranged really "old medieval time people jubilee". " He arranged public execution of those Knights who he had captured and they had their necks cut off by their own swords. Honourable way to die. But then follows mysterious; "hang as traitors the captive Vojans (Vatjas / Vadjas) and Tshuudis (Tchouds) and put to death who fell in his hands, exrerminating multi. tude of Tshuudis (Tchouds)."
Perhaps it's worth mentioning that there is NO material evidence that the battle was ever fought, no weapons, armor or bones on the ground of the shallow Peipus Lake near Räpina.22.214.171.124 18:47, 15 July 2007 (UTC)
Also, both "commanders" of the German side, as stated here, survived the battle.126.96.36.199 08:47, 16 July 2007 (UTC)
What the hell do you want ? A footage of the battle? Heck there are plenty of battles that were fought trough out history yet no archeological remains were found. And the battle was thought on a frozen lake, for all we know the armor of the teutons might have drifted towards the baltic sea through the Neva by now.--GerojiYuga 09:49, 10 October 2007 (UTC)--GerojiYuga 09:49, 10 October 2007 (UTC)
yes, and all the armor, weapons and bones of the 30 knights are now gone. that´s why you never find sunken stuff. it floats away til it hits the Mariana trench. you are right, we want proof of that skirmirsh. 188.8.131.52 (talk) 05:03, 15 July 2010 (UTC)
- The Livonian Order was incorporated into the Teutonic Order in 1237. I changed the article to mention the Livonian branch. Olessi 22:31, 12 November 2007 (UTC)
- There were no Teutonic brothers in battle, but only Livonian knights. According to this russian source Livonians were branch of the Teutonic Order with very high level of authonomy. At the same time Novgorod was under Mongols nominal rule. Thus the article should has proper wordings/ Its either Novgorod vs. Livonian order, or Mongols vs. Teutons.--184.108.40.206 11:49, 14 November 2007 (UTC)
- The Livonian brothers post-1237 are still considered part of the Teutonic Knights, even if they had a great deal of autonomy. The Teutonic Knights were not restricted to Prussia, but had brothers throughout the Holy Roman Empire, the Baltic, and Outremer. Many English language books refer to the Teutonic Knights in the battle, so the phrasing "Livonian branch of the Teutonic Knights" with relevant links seems fine to me. I am not especially knowledgeable about the Mongol/Novgorod ties, although mentioning them seems like overkill to me. Olessi 22:34, 14 November 2007 (UTC)
I think this article should be a part of Northern Crusades. The campaigns were connected and at least Eric Christiansen includes this chapter as the Crusade against Novgorod in his book ISBN 0333262433 ; ISBN 0140266534. so there is the reference in case one is needed. --Termer 07:51, 15 November 2007 (UTC)
wasn't actually a battle at all
Recent archaeological evidence at the site lends to the now growing belief that the battle wasn't actually a battle at all. It was just a minor skirmish between opposing forces and in no way at all affected the Teutonic Knights future campaigns, as the actual casualties involved were so few. Many now belive that what was in actual fact just a minor skirmish between a couple of hundred men was embellished for propoganda reasons by Alexander Nevsky and his supporters, and in reality there was no such thing as the Battle on the Ice or the Battle of Lake Peipus.
Strange thing the enemies of Russians,Teutons,did write about that "alleged skirmish" in a very deep detail stating that 20 knights died there.Taking into consideration that there was just about 70 knights in Livonia at that time,and the fact that 10 to 20 armed men accompanied each knight,it was a major battle of early Medieval age even in an enemies's eyes. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 220.127.116.11 (talk) 17:51, 8 June 2008 (UTC)
Given the nature of this topic, and the innate disagreement it produces as a result of historical ambiguity, it is quite clear that further discussion is futile. What is clear is that neither primary hisorical source, nor any tangential sources deliver an accurate, unbiased account of this particular event. However, what is also clear is that an actual battle did take place as can be inferred by the cross-referencing of the two sources' statements--they agree in mentioning some event of enough significance to be recorded. In addition, both accounts are very explicit in stating that the armies involved were large and casualties were heavy on both sides. Based on these primary sources, I see no reason to assume that it was a skirmish rather than a battle. The sources deserve the benefit of the doubt, and our own personal inclinations should not take precedent over eyewitness accounts. In my opinion, the article should be edited to reflect the ambiguity of the sources. Current statements are misleading and prone to personal interpretation. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 18.104.22.168 (talk) 10:56, 27 June 2008 (UTC) 20 Knights lost and 6 captives are from Livonian sources. There were probably more losses, and taking into account that for each Knight there were 10-20 knechts and servants, the total loss is probably 1,000-2,000, which by medieval standards is high. Saying that there was no battle and only a skirmish would be an understatement. It was actually a pretty serious battle. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 22.214.171.124 (talk) 01:23, 18 December 2008 (UTC)
According to this Russian source, there were no more than 500 knights in the whole Teutonic Order. This means that at least 4% of Teutonic Order warrior elite was killed in a single battle. This source also cites the total German casualties (knights, knechts, squires etc.) were 400, with 50 captured. The Estonian casualties are referred to as 'countless'. This is anything but a minor skirmish. Boron eye (talk) 10:05, 21 May 2011 (UTC)
- Ice melt every spring from Pihkva Lake and the helmets, armours, skeletons etc, if exists, are still in the bottom of the shallow lake in mud. I know only one attempt to collect some reminiscencies from the supposed place where the battle was said to happened. This was done by a German officer during summer 1942 and summer 1943 but I do not know the results of his attemps using local people as divers equipped with German frog man diving equipment borrowed from German Navy (Gotenhafen U boat base). The man was by his civil profession working in one German University (I do not know in which one) and Propaganda Ministerium in Berlin paid some of the expensies. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 126.96.36.199 (talk) 07:53, 16 March 2009 (UTC)
method of casualty calculation.
Are we using standard German propaganda method for calculating casualties? All german alllies not included. Get the hint? Where are Estonian casualties? --188.8.131.52 (talk) 12:43, 13 June 2009 (UTC)Pavel Golikov.
they are all in your mind.
Disregarding the denialist comments of the IP address above (who hasn't edited anything other than this talk), this is an important question. Both Russian and Teutonic sources state that countless number of Chud' (native tribes) had died. Plus, the Teutonic Order had allied with the Sweden and Denmark, meaning that there would be knights and infantry from these two countries as well. However, no-one says anything about their casualties. As such, 20 knights killed and 6 captured cannot be the true numbers, because it only refers to the Order casualties. Boron eye (talk) 11:07, 29 May 2011 (UTC)
While reading this article after related ones, I took the casualty count related in section "According to the Livonian Order's Livonian Rhymed Chronicle..." as exclusionary in explicitly referencing only "brothers" (at least as translated). According to the article on Teutonic Knights, "The military membership was always small, with volunteers and mercenaries augmenting the force as needed" so counting only "brothers" could omit significant numbers of their own force as well as the allied knights (not to mention Estonian, allied, and freebooter infantry). Would there have been internal sources for the chronicler(s) about other than members? Do histories of other campaigns in Rhymed report on casualties other than brothers? Yellow-lab (talk) 18:35, 31 May 2013 (UTC)
The Fennell book, and its position on the battle, are given undue weight, see: WP:UNDUE and WP:GEVAL for a clearly minority view: "The neutrality policy does not state or imply that we must give equal validity to minority views." Further, the placement and size of the discussion of the book's theory is out of place in the Legacy Section as it skews the historical legacy to imply there is a general controversy about whether or not it was an important battle at all, when there is no such controversy. It should be removed from that section and its coverage reduced to make clear it is a minority view.Tttom1 (talk) 23:30, 5 April 2010 (UTC)
I agree that the section exposing Fennell's point of view breaches WP:UNDUE. Fennell's assertions that the battle on Lake Peypus was a minor one are widely contradicted by two points reflected by mainstream historiography: first of all, the fact that there were two papal bulls (1232 and 1237) calling for a crusade to protect recently converted Finland from her neighbours (the first bull mentions the Russians by name). The second bull vows for the destruction of "the enemies of the cross", a term that includes Karelia and Russia. On the other hand, we have a well documented treaty between Novgorod and the Teutonic Order in 1243, in which the knights renounced to any territorial claim over Russian lands. Fennell's opinion should be summarized elsewhere in the article and the section removed.--Darius (talk) 02:46, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
- I've just performed a clean up of the section "Controversies". My proposal is that the section should be removed and the text which remains reduced to a single paragraph at the end of "The battle" section.--Darius (talk) 03:16, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
The implications of loss
Why doesn't this article mention the possible implications of Teutonic victory? According to this Russian magazine, Order victory would have had resulted in long-term conflict which the Order was highly unlikely to win. However, this conflict would also severely weaken the Novgorod and other Russian duchies, delaying the overthrow of Mongols. Boron eye (talk) 08:41, 22 May 2011 (UTC)
What are the correct estimation of troop numbers? The article cites a source that says 2000 on the Order's side, but that is the only citation and the summary in the top right corner says 4000 Order combatants with no citation. That's a huge difference. --184.108.40.206 (talk) 00:13, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
- Russian article says 15000—17000 vs 10000—12000 with a source written by this proffessor
Requested move 14 February 2015
Ice breaking and people drowning
Donald Ostrowski in Alexander Nevskii’s “Battle on the Ice”: The Creation of a Legend contends that the part about the ice breaking and people drowning was a relatively recent embellishment to the original historical story. He cites a large number of scholars who have written about the battle, Karamzin, Solovev, Petrushevskii, Khitrov, Platonov, Grekov, Vernadsky, Razin, Myakotin, Pashuto, Fennell and Kirpichnikov, all of whom don't mention anything about the ice breaking up or anyone’s drowning when discussing the battle on the ice. After analysing all the sources Ostrowski concludes that the part about ice breaking and drowning made an appearance in the 1938 Alexander Nevsky (film) by Eisenstein. So why is this cinematic embellishment written as if it was fact? --Nug (talk) 23:00, 20 February 2015 (UTC)
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