Gallery 1 — The England Wars

THE BATTLE AT SEHESTED 1813

When speak­ing about the Eng­land wars, one usu­al­ly refers to three sep­a­rate parts: the Bat­tle of the Row in 1801, Copen­hagen’s bom­bard­ment in 1807 and the sub­se­quent can­non boat war from 1807 to 1814.
But on July 10, 1813, Den­mark joined the fed­er­a­tion with France and com­mit­ted itself to the cease­fire between the great pow­ers ceas­ing a corps of 10,000 man foot­men, 2,100 rid­ers and 40 guns for Napoleon’s dis­pos­al.

When the war against Eng­land, Swe­den, Rus­sia began again on August 16, the lit­tle Dan­ish army moved under the king’s broth­er-in-law, Fred­er­ick of Hesse, down Hol­sten to join a French Armor Corps under Marskal Davout, who lay at Ham­burg.
But when Napoleon, after the Bat­tle of Leipzig on Octo­ber 18, 1813, had to give up his posi­tion along the Elbe, Davout pulled his troops togeth­er to keep Ham­burg as long as pos­si­ble, and the Danes could no longer wait for help from him for Hol­sten’s defense. What is sur­pris­ing is that Den­mark should defend Nor­way in Hol­stein against the Allies. The Swedish Crown Prince Carl Johan hoped to sur­round Fred­erik of Hesse, but in the hon­or­able bat­tle of the heath at Sehest­ed on Decem­ber 10, 1813, the Danes crossed over and reached Rends­borg west of Kiel, where they enclosed them­selves in the fortress.