DANSKE BYBOERS MØDE MED LEJESOLDATER UNDER SYVÅRSKRIGEN
Encounters between Danish townspeople and mercenaries during the Seven
This article explores the relations between townspeople and mercenaries in the Danish realm during the so-called Seven Years’ War of 1563-1570 between the Danish and Swedish kings. Drawing on a range of sources including royal instructions, petitions from town dwellers to the king, municipal records, plays and contemporary woodcuts, the article examines how the townspeople perceived the Scottish and German mercenaries with whom they come into close contact when soldiers were billeted in the towns before and after deployment. The article presents a number of examples of very different forms of interaction and encounters between mercenaries and town dwellers, ranging from riots, robberies, ructions and rape to marriage and enrolment in municipal guilds. These are used to highlight how the townspeople’s perceptions of the mercenaries varied depending on a variety of factors, including the individual town dweller’s previous personal experiences, age, values and norms as well as social and economic status.
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