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  • Writer's pictureGeorge Castrioti

January 10th, 1422 - The Battle of Nemecky Brod (or Deutschbrod)

Conflict: Hussite Wars

Combatants: Holy Roman Empire vs. Hussites

Location: Bohemia (Czech Republic)

Outcome: Hussite victory


In 1415, the execution of the Bohemian reformer John Huss and the persecution of his followers by the Holy Roman Empire spurred a succession of conflicts known as the Hussite Wars. In the period between 1419 and 1436, Imperial Crusaders sought to destroy the Hussites and their movement. These Crusades were intermingled with civil wars between the Hussites themselves.

Departure of the Žižka soldiers from Kostelec nad Labem by Věnceslav Černý


From 1419 to 1424, the Hussites were led by a former mercenary and gifted soldier name John Zizka. The armies of the Holy Roman Emperor Sigismund were defeated by Zizka's Hussite forces at Sudoner and Prague in 1419 and at Lutitz and Kuttenberg in 1421. After another defeat at Kutna Hora on January 6th of 1422, Sigismund retreated toward the southeast. Zizka, however, met the retreating army at Nemecky Brod on January 10th.


Although Zizka's army was only half the strength of Sigismund's, the Hussites once again decisively defeated the Imperial army. Sigismund himself was nearly captured and was forced to flee with more than half his soldiers lying dead behind him.


Points of interest:

  • John Zizka developed an effective system of wagenburg (wagon fortresses) mounted with artillery and drilled his troops regularly.

  • Zizka lost an eye while a solider for the court of King Wenceslaus IV; in 1421, he lost his other eye in the Siege of Rabi. Yet, he continued to be the military leader of the Taborite Hussites until he died of plague in 1424.


A Hussite Wagenburg by an unknown artist


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Sources:

Dupuy, R. Ernest & Dupuy, Trevor N. (1993). The Harper's Encyclopedia of Military History. New York: HarperCollins.


Eggenberger, David (1985). An Encyclopedia of Battles: Accounts of Over 1,560 Battles from 1479 B.C. to the Present. New York: Dover Publications, Inc.

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