Battle of Austerlitz reenactment draws record numbers of participants

Reenactment of the Battle of Austerlitz
Reenactment of the Battle of Austerlitz Copyright Petr David Josek/Copyright 2023 The AP. All rights reserved
By Jiri Skacel & Euronews
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Thousands flocked to Santon Hill for the annual reenactment of the Battle of Austerlitz. This year's commemoration is the largest since 2015, with some 1200 history enthusiasts participating from 15 different countries.


More than 10,000 spectators braved the cold and snow near the village of Tvarožná in the Brno region of the Czech Republic to watch the annual reenactment of the historic battle of Austerlitz.

Also known as the Battle of the Three Emperors, the nine-hour fight saw Napoleon's army of 60,000 famously defeat the much stronger armies of Tsar Alexander I of Russia and Emperor Francis of Austria in 1805.

For the locals, the recreation of one of Napoleon's most famous and successful battles is not meant to celebrate the controversial figure - it is meant to commemorate and promote knowledge of a common European history, particularly in light of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine last year. 

An annual tradition coinciding with a controversial film

This reenactment attracted many more spectators than usual, in part due to the release of the latest Ridley Scott film centred around the infamous Napoleon Bonaparte.

The movie has been met with waves of negative reviews from French historians and film critics and some local Czech historians have joined them in expressing their reservations about the movie.

Jakub Samek is a historian, battle participant and one of the event organisers. He recently published a book about the French Emperor. 

"(Ridley Scott) based the film on a legend that Napoleon had circulated in his propaganda bulletin just after the battle. The legend was that cannons cut the ice of the pond under the feet of the Russian army and thousands of enemies died there," Samek explains. 

Watch our full report in the video above.

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