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Battle of Lyndanisse
Part of Northern Crusades
Dannebrog falling from the sky during the Battle of Lyndanisse.
Date June 15, 1219
Location Lyndanisse (Tallinn), Estonia
Coordinates: 59°26′07″N 24°44′22″E / 59.43528°N 24.73944°E / 59.43528; 24.73944
Result Danish victory
Revalia, Harria Denmark
Valdemar II
1000-2000[1] "several thousand"
Casualties and losses
1000+  ?

The Battle of Lyndanisse took place on June 15, 1219.

Under pretext of helping the Crusade in Palestine, the Danish king Valdemar II Sejr defeated the Estonians at Lyndanisse (Estonian: Lindanise) under orders from the Pope.

The Ryd Cloister yearbook of 1219 says: ”After gathering a very large army, king Valdemar went to Estonia with one thousand five hundred longships, and after many battles succeeded in christening the whole country and bringing it under Danish rule, which it still is.”

The king, together with Bishop Anders Sunesen, Bishop Theoderik of Estonia and his vassals Count Albert of Nordalbingia and the wendish Vitslav I of Rügen sailed to the northern Estonian Province of Revele in the beginning of July.

The crusading army camped at Lyndanisse and built a castle there, named Castrum Danorum, which the Estonians called Taani-linn, (later Tallinn), the Danish castle.

The Estonians sent several negotiators, but they were only playing for time, so that they could recruit a large enough army to fight the Danes.

On 15 June, the Estonians attacked the Danes near the castle, right after suppertime. They attacked from five different directions, and completely surprised the crusaders, who fled in all directions. Bishop Theoderik was killed by the Estonians, who thought that he was the king. The Danes were saved by their Wendish vassals, as Vitslav lead a quick counterattack, that stopped the Estonian advance. This gave the crusaders time to regroup, and the Estonians were routed.

Legend holds that during this battle, in the Danes' hour of need, the Danish flag, Dannebrog fell from the sky and gave them renewed hope. The Dannebrog remains the oldest state flag in use today.

See also


  1. ^ The Baltic Crusade By William L. Urban; Northern Illinois University Press; ISBN 0875800521

External links



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