The Kalmar War

Wojna Kalmarska – 1611

The Kalmar War

From The Historian’s History of the World (In 25 Volumes) by Henry Smith William L.L.D. – Vol. XVI.(Scandinavia) Pg. 308-310

The northern part of the Scandinavian peninsula, as already noticed, had been peopled from the remotest times by nomadic tribes called Finns or Cwenas by the Norwegians and Lapps by the Swedes, from which their territory derived the name of Lapland. These aboriginal inhabitants retained their primitive manners, language, and religion, unaffected by the progress of Christianity in the North. No definite boundary separated the adjacent kingdoms of Sweden and Norway from the dreary wilderness occupied by their less civilised neighbours who subsisted by hunting and fishing. The progress of conquest had gradually pressed them nearer to the borders of the arctic circle, but still even under the Union of Kalmar their territorial limits remained undefined.

The tribes scattered along the coasts beyond the North Cape paid tribute to Norway as early as the reign of Harold Harfagr. The Laplanders round the gulf of Bothnia were subdued by associations of fur-traders, to whom the exclusive monopoly of their commerce and government was granted by Magnus Ladulas; and so far had these merchants abused their privileges and thrown off their dependence on the Swedish crown that they styled them selves “kings of the Lapps.” Gustavus Vasa expelled these usurpers, and reduced the natives to the condition of tributaries. Charles IX after his accession assumed the title of “king of the Lapps of Norrland,” and founded the new city Gothenburg (Goteborg), near the mouth of the Gota, to the inhabitants of which he granted the privilege of fishing on the northern coasts of Lapland.

These measures, added to the interruption of the Danish commerce with the ports in the gulf of Riga, awakened the jealousy of Christian IV of Den mark, who stationed a convoy in the Sound to protect all vessels navigating the Baltic, in which he claimed not merely freedom of mercantile intercourse but a right of dominion such as had been immemorially asserted by his royal predecessors. In vain did he remonstrate with the king and the senate against these encroachments upon the interests of his crown and the immunities of his people; Charles evaded all proposals for redress, and in 1611 commenced that sanguinary struggle between the two kingdoms usually called the war of Kalmar. Before taking the field, Christian despatched a herald-at-arms with a declaration of hostilities against Sweden, but Charles refused to admit him into his presence, and detained him as a prisoner; whilst his own messenger reached the enemy’s camp, where he presented a counter declaration, repeating the arguments advanced in the Danish manifesto and endeavouring to throw the odium of the rupture upon his adversary.

The national land-forces of Denmark at this epoch consisted in the feudal militia, composed of the nobility and their vassals, the tenant of every crown fief being compelled to serve in person on horseback, and also to furnish a certain number of his serfs for the infantry, which was divided into regiments, or “banners,” of six hundred men each, commanded by a captain, and subdivided into twelve companies, headed by as many lieutenants. These levies furnished an army of sixteen thousand native troops, and they were increased by four thousand mercenaries, consisting of German cavalry, with English and Scottish infantry. The defence of Norway was confided to the national militia. The whole naval force was divided into two squadrons, one of which was sent to cruise in the Kattegat, and the other to blockade Kalmar, the key of Sweden on the Baltic frontier.

Notwithstanding these formidable preparations, Christian laboured undercertain obvious disadvantages; the Danish nobility grudged the pecuniary supplies; the nation had not heard the sound of war since the Treaty of Stettin in 1570; whilst the Swedes, on the other hand, had been constantly engaged in hostilities with Poland and Russia.

One division of the Danish army, under Steen Schestedt, grand-marshal of the kingdom, penetrated through Vestergotland to Jonkoping; and the other, commanded by Christian in person, laid siege to Kalmar, which was soon obliged to capitulate, the king himself mounting the breech at the head of his troops. The garrison retreated into the citadel, but the town was given up to be plundered by the soldiery.

Charles, and his son Gustavus Adolphus, who had surprised the principal military depot of the enemy, advanced by rapid marches to the relief of the place, whilst Admiral Gyldenstiern arrived with a superior naval force, and threw a consider able supply of men and provisions into the besieged citadel. Schestedt was recalled from Vestergotland, but the Swedes, determined to attack the Danish entrenchments before the arrival of this reinforcement, broke the enemy’s lines, whilst the garrison made a sortie, set fire to the town, and penetrated to the royal camp. On this occasion Christian signalised his personal courage, presence of mind, and other great military qualities, for which he was distinguished. After an obstinate com bat, the assailants were driven back to their original position; and Schestedt, ar riving in the midst of the battle, decided the fortune of the day. A short time afterwards the Swedes abandoned their camp in the night, and withdrew to Risby, in the expectation of receiving additional supplies. Their retreat compelled the surrender of the found a vast Store of bronze artillery with other munitions of war.

Exasperated by these misfortunes, the Swedish monarch sent a cartel to Christian, accusing him in the most bitter and reproachful terms of having broken the peace of Stettin, taken the city of Kalmar by treachery, and shed a profusion of innocent blood in an unjust cause. Every means of conciliation being exhausted, he offered to terminate the quarrel by single combat. ” Come then,” said he, after the old Gothic fashion, “into the open field with us, accompanied by two of your vassals, in full armour, and we will meet you sword in hand, without helm or harness, attended in the same manner. Herein if you fail we shall no longer consider you as an honourable king or a soldier.”

Christian answered this extraordinary letter in terms still more reproachful, declining to accept the challenge of “a paralytic dotard,” whom he sarcastically counselled to remain by a warm fire with his nurse and physician, rather than expose himself to combat in the open field, with his younger and more robust competitor. This severe reply the king followed up by attacking the Swedes in their entrenchments at Risby; but after three days hard fighting, he was compelled to retreat, and set sail for Copenhagen, where he remained during the winter. Charles did not long survive these exertions, dying at Nykoping in 1611, worn out with fatigue of body and mind.

During this war the sixteen-year-old prince, afterwards distinguished as Gustavus (II) Adolphus, won his spurs. Commanding a separate division of the army, he accomplished the destruction of Christianopel, the principal arsenal of the Danes in Skania, and reconquered Oland. These victories were perhaps the most notable achievements of the war.

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———-

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Nov. 5. 1898 Forest and Stream Pg. 371-372

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The Kalmar War

Wojna Kalmarska – 1611

The Kalmar War

From The Historian’s History of the World (In 25 Volumes) by Henry Smith William L.L.D. – Vol. XVI.(Scandinavia) Pg. 308-310

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July 2, 1898. Forest and Stream Pg. 11

The Tuna Record.

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Nov. 12, 1898 Forest and Stream Pg. 396

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Every substance may be considered as a varnish, which, when applied to the surface of a solid body, gives it a permanent lustre. Drying oil, thickened by exposure to the sun’s heat or [...] Read more →

A History of the Use of Arsenicals in Man

The arsenicals (compounds which contain the heavy metal element arsenic, As) have a long history of use in man – with both benevolent and malevolent intent. The name ‘arsenic’ is derived from the Greek word ‘arsenikon’ which means ‘potent'”. As early as 2000 BC, arsenic trioxide, obtained from smelting copper, was used [...] Read more →

Public Attitudes Towards Speculation

Reprint from The Pitfalls of Speculation by Thomas Gibson 1906 Ed.

THE PUBLIC ATTITUDE TOWARD SPECULATION

THE public attitude toward speculation is generally hostile. Even those who venture frequently are prone to speak discouragingly of speculative possibilities, and to point warningly to the fact that an overwhelming majority [...] Read more →

On Bernini’s Bust of a Stewart King

As reported in the The Colac Herald on Friday July 17, 1903 Pg. 8 under Art Appreciation as a reprint from the Westminster Gazette

ART APPRECIATION IN THE COMMONS.

The appreciation of art as well as of history which is entertained by the average member of the [...] Read more →

The Real Time Piece Gentleman and the Digital Watch Vault

Paul Thorpe, Brighton, U.K.

The YouTube watch collecting world is rather tight-knit and small, but growing, as watches became a highly coveted commodity during the recent world-wide pandemic and fueled an explosion of online watch channels.

There is one name many know, The Time Piece Gentleman. This name for me [...] Read more →

Tobacco as Medicine

The first published illustration of Nicotiana tabacum by Pena and De L’Obel, 1570–1571 (shrpium adversana nova: London).

Tobacco can be used for medicinal purposes, however, the ongoing American war on smoking has all but obscured this important aspect of ancient plant.

Tobacco is considered to be an indigenous plant of [...] Read more →

Money Saving Recipe for Gold Leaf Sizing

Artisans world-wide spend a fortune on commercial brand oil-based gold leaf sizing. The most popular brands include Luco, Dux, and L.A. Gold Leaf. Pricing for quart size containers range from $35 to $55 depending upon retailer pricing.

Fast drying sizing sets up in 2-4 hours depending upon environmental conditions, humidity [...] Read more →

Palermo Wine

Take to every quart of water one pound of Malaga raisins, rub and cut the raisins small, and put them to the water, and let them stand ten days, stirring once or twice a day. You may boil the water an hour before you put it to the raisins, and let it [...] Read more →

Carpenters’ Furniture

IT requires a far search to gather up examples of furniture really representative in this kind, and thus to gain a point of view for a prospect into the more ideal where furniture no longer is bought to look expensively useless in a boudoir, but serves everyday and commonplace need, such as [...] Read more →

Rendering Amber Clear for Use in Lens-Making for Magnifying Glass

by John Partridge,drawing,1825

From the work of Sir Charles Lock Eastlake entitled Materials for a history of oil painting, (London: Longman, Brown, Green, and Longmans, 1846), we learn the following:

The effect of oil at certain temperatures, in penetrating “the minute pores of the amber” (as Hoffman elsewhere writes), is still more [...] Read more →

Chinese Duck Cooking – A Few Recipes

Chen Lin, Water fowl, in Cahill, James. Ge jiang shan se (Hills Beyond a River: Chinese Painting of the Yuan Dynasty, 1279-1368, Taiwan edition). Taipei: Shitou chubanshe fen youxian gongsi, 1994. pl. 4:13, p. 180. Collection of the National Palace Museum, Taipei. scroll, light colors on paper, 35.7 x 47.5 cm

 

The American Museum in Britain – From Florida to Bath

Hernando de Soto (c1496-1542) Spanish explorer and his men torturing natives of Florida in his determination to find gold. Hand-coloured engraving. John Judkyn Memorial Collection, Freshford Manor, Bath

The print above depicts Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto and his band of conquistadors torturing Florida natives in order to extract information on where [...] Read more →

Proper Book Handling and Cleaning

Book Conservators, Mitchell Building, State Library of New South Wales, 29.10.1943, Pix Magazine

The following is taken verbatim from a document that appeared several years ago in the Maine State Archives. It seems to have been removed from their website. I happened to have made a physical copy of it at the [...] Read more →

The Field of the Cloth of Gold

Reprint from the Royal Collection Trust Website

The meeting between Henry VIII and Francis I, known as the Field of the Cloth of Gold, took place between 7 to 24 June 1520 in a valley subsequently called the Val d’Or, near Guisnes to the south of Calais. The [...] Read more →

What is the Meaning of the Term Thorough-bred Fox-hound

Reprint from the Sportsman Cabinet and Town & Country Magazine, Vol.1, Number 1, November 1832.

MR. Editor,

Will you allow me to inquire, through the medium of your pages, the correct meaning of the term thorough-bred fox-hound? I am very well aware, that the expression is in common [...] Read more →