Battle of Burkersdorf
In the Battle of Burkersdorf on July 21, 1762, during the Seven Years' War, the main Prussian army under Frederick II fought for the prerequisite for recapturing the strategically important fortress Schweidnitz in Silesia .
Russia passed over to Prussia in the Peace of Saint Petersburg in May 1762 and sent an auxiliary corps of 20,000 men under General Sachar Grigoryevich Tschernyschow (Field Marshal General) to Frederick's army in Silesia. Strengthened in this way, Friedrich planned to push the Austrian main army entrenched near Burkersdorf an der Weistritz under Field Marshal Leopold Joseph von Daun from Schweidnitz. During the preparations for the attack, Friedrich learned of the fall of Peter III on July 18 . and the withdrawal order from his successor Catherine II to Chernyshev. Friedrich arranged for them to remain in his deployment position until July 21st, pointing out that supplies still had to be provided.
On the night of the 21st, Friedrich secretly set up a large battery in front of the heights occupied by the Austrians. At the same time the Prussian army formed in order to attack in the early morning. The main target of the first cannonade was the Austrian cavalry. They fled, overran their own infantry and dragged them along with them. Daun was not aware of the withdrawal order. He did not see through the role of the Russians as a spectator and felt compelled to withdraw from the supposed superiority. The Prussian infantry immediately followed up and captured several cannons. The Austrians lost the battle with more than 1,000 dead and 2,000 prisoners.
Tschernyschow withdrew with his corps the following day, richly presented by Friedrich with an honor sword set with diamonds and 15,000 ducats.
The result of the battle was the retreat of the Austrians from Silesia to the County of Glatz and the opening of the siege of Schweidnitz. A last attempt by Daun for relief failed in August in the battle of Reichenbach . The fortress surrendered on October 9, 1762, meaning that Silesia had come completely into Prussian hands before the end of the war in February 1763.
- Gerd Heinrich : Friedrich II of Prussia. A great king's achievement and life . Duncker & Humblot, Berlin 2009, ISBN 978-3-428-12978-2 , pp. 186-188.
- Johannes Kunisch : Frederick the Great. The king and his time . CH Beck, Munich 2004, ISBN 3-406-52209-2 , p. 427 ff.
- Curt Jany : History of the Prussian Army from the 15th Century to 1914 , Vol. 2: The Army of Friederich the Great 1740–1763 , reprint ed. by Eberhard Jany. Biblio, Osnabrück 1967. On Burkersdorf pp. 625–630.
- Jan von Flocken: Catherine II Tsarina of Russia. Biography . Verlag Neues Leben, Berlin 1991, ISBN 3-355-01215-7 , p. 114.
- Curt Jany: The Army of Frederick the Great 1740–1763 , p. 625.