The Battle of Saulė: Samogitians’ Power and the Invaders’ Collapse

The emergence of Šiauliai in the flow of history is to be related to the first mention of the name of the region or land in which the city originated. For the first time the name Soule is mentioned in the written sources of that time on September 22, 1236. This name appears in the rhymed Livonian Chronicle, which was written in order to tell how successfully paramilitary monks of the Teutonic Order from Western Europe baptised local people in the Baltic country in those times. This document, which was important to the history of Lithuania and Šiauliai, described the Battle of Saulė, in which a joint Lithuanian, Samogitian and Semigallian army, which managed to unite for the common defence, crushed the Knights of the Sword. This Order of the Knights of the Sword, which defended the Archbishop of Riga city from the Baltic tribes, which did not obey his will and were attacking his territories, and fought for religious truths and baptism in the territories inhabited by Balts and Finns, was founded in 1202 on the initiative of the Archbishop of Riga – Albert. Under the veil of the mission of baptism, the Knights of the Sword pushed their way through the territory of the present Lithuania with the aim of robbing and conquering local lands and making local people obey them. They could not achieve this because united Baltic tribes managed to prevent this in the Battle of Saulė. This way the locality, which is now known as Šiauliai city, was for the first time mentioned in the history under the name of Saulė.

Saulės mūšis. Vitražas

Saulės mūšio vitražas.

Livonijos kronika 203v lapas

Livonijos kronika: 203v lapas.

Livonijos kronika 192r lapas

Livonijos kronika: 192r lapas.



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