Paide again besieged by the Russians

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September 1560

The year 1560 was generally successful for Russia in the Livonian war: Aluliina (Aluksne) and Viljandi were captured, the order forces were defeated in Härgmäe battle and the land was plundered up to Haapsalu. The only more serious drawback was under Paide. Already in July 1560 the Russian troops appeared in Paide, as they knew that Järva bailiff is not in position, the garrison of the stronghold is small.

But the first besiege attempt had no results and therefore the Russians arrived to the city in September already as better prepared: this time they had major siege guns with them. The chronicler Johann Renner tells that this time the besiege lasted for about five weeks and the Russians seized the city as well as the stronghold under fierce drumfire.

They could broke even 60 square cords (over 100 metres) of stronghold wall, but they still could not invade the stronghold, as the military squad lead by Caspar von Oldenbockum, young chief of stronghold, could push the assault back with fierce counterattack. The stronghold wall could also be fixed fast, by which all people having come under the shelter in Paide were of assistance: both young and old, Germans and non-Germans, women and maids.

The situation of Paide was still extremely critical and Oldenbockum sent several petitions for sending the assisting troops to order master Kettler. The order master in Dünamünde (Daugavgrivas) tried to assemble the assisting group, but unfortunately he was not able to assemble the sufficient number of men. The citizens of Paide got released from the besiege of the Russians so that Oldenbockum had faked the surrender: thrust the hat on the end of the pole and showed it to the Russians. Then the major group of Russians assembled in front of the gate, onto whom Oldenbockum asked to open the fire. Therefore hundreds of Russians died, thereafter others finished the siege and left Paide.

Johann Renner. Liivimaa ajalugu 1556-1561. 1995; 2006.


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