Battle of Lwów (1675)

Battle of Lwów or Battle of Lesienice refers to a battle between the armies of Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth and Ottoman Empire that took place near the city of Lwów (Lviv, western Ukraine) on August 24, 1675.

Battle of Lwów
Part of the Polish–Ottoman War (1672–76)
Walka o sztandar turecki.jpg
Battle over the Turkish banner by Józef Brandt
DateAugust 24, 1675
Result Polish-Lithuanian victory
Fictitious Ottoman flag 4.svg Ottoman Empire Coat of arms Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth
Commanders and leaders
Ibrahim Şişman John III Sobieski
20,000[1]: 653  ~6,000[1]: 653  (2,000 cavalry, 4,000 infantry)
Casualties and losses
Unknown Unknown


Before the BattleEdit

In the early summer of 1675 the Turkish forces of Ibrahim Şişman (Abraham the Fat) crossed the Polish border into Podolia and started its rapid march towards Lwów along the banks of the Dniester.[1]: 653  The army numbered some 20,000 men and was composed of Turkish infantry and cavalry with significant Tatar detachments. The Polish king John III Sobieski decided to concentrate his troops in and around Lwów[1]: 653  and face the assaulting Muslim army after more reinforcements arrived. The Turkish commander was notified of the concentration and moved his army to Lwow.[1]: 649 

Sobieski decided to split his forces. A unit of 180 infantrymen, 200 light cavalry and several cannons was placed in the easternmost of the ravines leading to the road to Lwów. Most of the heavy cavalry were placed on the road itself, directly behind the valleys and the plain. The left flank of his forces was guarded by 200 Hussars stationed in the village of Zboiska, while the rest of the light cavalry and infantry guarded all other approaches towards the city in case the Turks outflanked the defenders and attacked the city from other directions. The remaining taborites and civilians were ordered to group on the hills surrounding the plains. They were given spare lances of the Hussars in order to give the impression that the number of Polish troops was much higher.[citation needed]


The Turks advance along the route exactly as Sobieski predicted.[1]: 653  Convinced that a large group of Hussars were hiding in the woods on the hills, Ibrahim Shyshman ordered a strong group of cavalry to reach the road through one of the ravines. They were stopped by the Polish infantry and then pushed back by a counter-attack of light cavalry. At the same time, Sobieski ordered all troops guarding other approaches towards the city to join the main forces located along the road.[citation needed]

The 1700-strong group of Hussars was joined by three banners (300 men) of Lithuanian light cavalry under hetman Michał Kazimierz Radziwiłł. Sobieski ordered the cavalry group to advance through the unguarded western gorge. The ravine was relatively narrow and the Turks could not outflank the Polish and Lithuanian cavalry while on the move.[citation needed]: 99 

The battle was soon over with Sobieski personally leading.[1]: 653  The Pole's pursuit of the Ottoman cavalry lasted until the dusk.[1]: 653 


Sobieski liberates the rest of Poland, and returns to Cracow for his coronation.[1]: 653 

The Battle of Lwow is commemorated on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Warsaw, with the inscription "LWOW 24 VIII 1675".

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Tucker, S.C., 2010, A Global Chronology of Conflict, Vol. Two, Santa Barbara:CLIO, LLC, ISBN 9781851096671

External linksEdit

  • Winged Hussars, Radoslaw Sikora, Bartosz Musialowicz, BUM Magazine, 2016.