High on horse, with helmet, armour, full of Shine and full of colors. So the knight has survived in the collective memory. The proudest and most illustrious knight Charles le Téméraire, Karl der Kühne, the immensely rich Duke of Burgundy. And he, of all people, the flower of chivalry, was defeated by Swiss farmers in three battles. All that’s left is the counting-out rhyme remained the pride of Burgundy: “In Grandson, he lost the Good, in Murten, he lost the courage, in the case of Nancy the blood”.

“I have dared”

Charles died in 1477, as he had lived, without any fear. His Motto is: “I have dared” – “The lay emprins”. And now he had lost everything. Two days after his last fight, the body was found in a pond. A slash of the halberd had cleaved his head. By further injuries, he was disfigured, by the wolves eaten and all the characters, stripped of his Power. Karl’s body was frozen and naked – the Dead has been completely looted. Only an old servant was able to identify the Duke with reference to the age of the hubs.


The body of Charles the Bold found. The painter Auguste Feyen-Perrin idealized the dead, in fact, the splendor was disfigured loving Prince completely.

©Commons manufacturer

An inglorious end, not only for Karl, with him also that Chivalry ended up as a military Power. Because Charles heavy, armoured cavalry could not stand against the array of Swiss farmers. It is a popular myth that the firearms defeated the knights, it was a completely different, today a forgotten weapon.

Siege only with a terrain advantage


medieval justice so strict murderers were of pigs and lewd ass punished

Gernot Kramper

previously managed it for seven years, to beat great knight armies. The Swiss fought for their independence, as they defeated the Habsburgs at Morgarten (1315) and Sempach (1386), in Germany, the fighters of the Dithmarscher farmers ‘ Republic 1500 beat the mercenaries, the Black guard. But in all of these Victories, the terrain played a decisive role. The untrained farmers and citizens managed to make the armored professional warriors in one place to battle, where their heavy armor, were no advantage, but a severe disadvantage.

In the Fight against Charles the Bold marshes, and slopes were the confederates. Here is “invented” by the Swiss the modern infantry. The Romans already knew that the tab could not be any line of foot soldiers to break through, if this were in a panic. But the Roman legionaries were drilled fighting machine that had for many years practiced the battle in their formations .

A very long skewer the super-weapon

The Swiss roster is not composed of professional soldiers – they were strong and brave, but not very disciplined. The Swiss had another advantage: they used no converted scythes, and short skewers like other Peasant detachments. The Swiss developed a long skewer, which was longer than the lances of the knights. These skewers were about 5 meters long and could only be used by strong men ruled. There were weapons that you could use in addition, only in the group for the fight “man against man” they were totally unsuitable. But in a large Formation, you were a terrible weapon.

Charles the Bold, however, had the most modern army of his time. His heavy cavalry, fought a disciplined manner under a command, he had artillery, and efficient care in the field. The Swiss placed themselves in a large rectangular pile, the narrow side was the Front. She stared in front of weapons, as the first rows of the pile lowered the gigantic skewers. To was horses not arrive at this Front. Before the sword or lance of the knight can reach a Fußkämpfer would have, were he and his horse has been impaled. A brute-force attack, as a breakthrough was impossible. If the rear side of the long spit was supported on the floor, was the wall of lances impenetrable.


Villa of the Praetorian guard at U-Bahnbau found – so luxurious, the ancient Romans

lived The biggest new feature: The Swiss Formation was not only Defensive capability. Already the multiple Camps of the Hussites were an army of Knights with little or extremely heavy blow, but they were immobile. The Swiss bunch, however, was a relentless attack formation, the shattered as Thor’s Hammer, the lines of the opponent.

Gruesome carnage

The reason was simple and cruel: If the depth of Formation had once set in motion, could not hold. The front rows were forced to constantly move forward, because the rear limbs nachdrängten. Who fell to the ground, was trampled on by the own people. With this power, lance woods, the Front forward urge and smashed any resistance. The front of the bunch, the pikemen stood with the lances, warriors with halberds and two-handed followed swords, and armored fighters. Against this kind of to fight, the knight had no Chance. A violence, you could face a heap, only with a own Formation of the same kind. Quickly, the Germans adapted the Swiss method of warfare.

meteorite metal

meteorites-steel: Tutankhamun’s dagger space

came out of the world, The German mercenary leader Frundsberg described the collision of two clusters in Italy: “Where, under the long, a number of members of Brigades to go to reason, the people behind it to be a little shy.” The long skewers jammed, the crowd was worse than a concert in front of the stage. Swords and halberds were of no use to us, so to handle in the Close to daggers, short Axes, and fist-banging. Many of them were also crushed. Others crawled between the legs around the opponent, the Tendons cut through. The carnage went, to shake up a bunch of started. But the escape was not an Option, the group could not stand it anymore, it was literally rammed into the ground.

at the beginning of the Swiss neutrality

For the Swiss, even the leadership was in the military technology as two-edged thing. By the Swiss independence was preserved. Territorially, Switzerland is enlarged by conquests in Germany and Italy. To Napoleon dared nobody, the confederates attack. Soon, however, the Swiss team was taught their first defeat. At Marignano, they were of German, French and Italian servants, who fought in the same way as you, but disciplined, thrown back. The battle of Marignano was extremely cruel. Witnesses reported that the fighters would have stood up to the ankles in the blood of the dead.

Today, the battle is not forgotten anywhere in the world, only in Switzerland. There, the “battle of the giants” as a turning point in the foreign policy. The strict neutrality policy of Switzerland is attributed to the shock of the defeat.

at the Time, the world was appalled by the barbaric and religious ferocity of the fighting. In the Fight against Charles the Bold, it was forbidden to the Swiss strict not to take prisoners. In the middle ages, prisoners were made because of the ransom, the Swiss should fight in Formation and not because of a ransom to leave. The result is that they beat all the prisoners and wounded mercilessly dead. In Marignano, the German dead on cut Swiss bellies, to lubricate with the grease your skewers. Body fat had faith to the enlightenment and a strong cultic significance in the people. Other bodies chopped up, fry the pieces and eat.

at the beginning of the Swiss guard

The Swiss authorities restricted after the defeat of the “rice run” – the Swiss term for Mercenaries – a. One of the last and most famous rice runner Kaspar Had was. He and his men established the Tradition of the Swiss guard in the Vatican, as they sheltered in 1527 the Roman Pope prior to the Spanish mercenaries. The Spaniards were reformed, Catholic, and Had and his men.

Although you should return to Zurich to let the Swiss mercenary as a “real war, people and servants,” the Pope and the College of cardinals “in great Distress” in the lurch. Had and the majority of his men were on the St. Peter’s square, the attacker, 42 mercenaries, under the leadership of Hercules Göldli were able to bring the Pope to safety. All the rest of the Swiss fell. The seriously injured Kaspar Had been hacked to pieces. His wife lost her Finger, as she threw herself protectively over the Dying.


“Charles the Bold. The end of the house of Burgundy.” Werner Paravicini

“The war history of the Swiss: since the founding of the Swiss Confederation to the perpetual peace with France. M. Rudolf” Google Books

“Historia Mr George and Mr Casparn of Frundsberg, Vatters vnd Sons, beyder Lord Mündelheym, keys of the Top Feldtherrn, Gallant and Laudable war deeds” Google Books

archaeology-the village

Zombie fear Englishmen in the middle ages, mutilated their dead

British researchers have made a tourist magnet, a terrible discovery. In an idyllic village are buried terribly mutilated bodies outside of the cemetery. The posthumous injuries should ban the dead in their graves.

Gernot Kramper