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The Axtorna Stone

Here in the middle of the quiet Falkenberg countryside, the gun smoke hovered thick on 20 October 1565. The wind howled and the rain lashed when 20,000 men clashed at the battle at Axtorna, one of the greatest in Nordic history.


Bild på Axtornastenen

Disputes over Halland

During the trouble time of the Nordic Seven-year War, 1563-1570, Halland was a Danish possession. Sweden managed to take Varberg fortress in 1565. A Danish army was dispatched to take back the city, but it failed and was forced to flee southward. A Swedish army was then in hot pursuit. That the battle took place at Axtorna in Köinge was due to the fact that the Swedes managed to burn the bridge over Ätran and thus cut off the escape route. The Danish troops where forced to find a location to wade across the river and the choice was made to cross at this point.

Bloodbath at Axtorna

On 20 October 1565, 11,000 Swedish and 9,000 Danish soldiers met. Once the battle ended, some 4,000 men were dead on the battlefield and they are still buried here in mass graves. In spite of the Swedes being greater in number, the Danish army won, thanks largely to better cavalry and leadership. In spite of its magnitude, the batter had no great significance to the war.

Visit the Site Today

There are not many traces that bear witness to a major battle at Axtorna, but many finds have been made at archaeological excavations. A memorial stone and an information sign are what currently remind visitors of the battle. If you continue along the small road that runs down along the stone, you come to yet another ecomuseum, namely the Watermill in Axtorna

Address

  1. Koordinates: 56.98707, 12.69363

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