The Battle of Grunwald (Tannenberg)
Introduction: The July 15, 1410 battle fought between the villages of Grunwald and Tannenberg - as the village of Stębark was then called - was an epochal event. It was a battle between the Teutonic Knights, a mounted Military Order that had created its own German state along the Baltic Sea north of Poland, and the combined forces of the Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, recently joined through their ruler, King Własysław Jagiełło. It was a massive encounter pitting 24,000 men at arms on the Teutonic side against 39,000 on the Polish-Lithuanian side. Arguably, it was thus the largest battle of the Middle Ages, dwarfing the battle that took place on October 25, 1415 at Agincourt between the English and French forces that numbered 5900 and 20-30,000 respectively. The battle, which in Germany continues to be referred to as the Battle of Tannenberg, has very much continued to live on in the consciousness of both Poles and Germans.