Alexander Nevsky strikes Jarl Birger by Nikolai Roerich

Alexander Nevsky strikes Jarl Birger by Nikolai Roerich

In 1240, the Swedes marched on Rus to the Neva by sea, and the Germans marched to Pskov by land. Alexander, Prince of Novgorod, acted quickly and decisively: not allowing the Swedish and German knights to unite, he marched with a small retinue to the Neva district. “God is not strong, but in Truth,” he encouraged his retinue.

The battle took place on the day of memory of Vladimir, the baptist of Russia, July 15, 1240. Prince Alexander made his way to the center of the camp and fought with Jarl Birger, the Swedes’ commander and “put a seal on his face with a sharp spear”, as the Life of Alexander Nevsky says. Having lost many warriors, the enemies fled along the Neva to the sea. For this victory Novgorod Prince Alexander nicknamed Nevsky.

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