Krems


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Krems

a town in NE Austria, in Lower Austria on the River Danube. Pop.: 23 713 (2001)

Krems

 

(Krems an der Donau), a city in the province of Lower Austria, on the Danube just past the Wachau Gorge. Population, 24,000 (1969). A railroad junction. Krems has a steel-rolling mill and machine-building, leather and shoemaking, and chemical enterprises. There is wine-making and a museum of viticulture.

Krems is noted for the battle between Russian and French troops that took place nearby on Oct. 30 (Nov. 11), 1805, during the War of the Third Coalition. After his victory over the Austrian Army at Ulm, Napoleon sent a 200,000-man army against General M. I. Kutuzov’s army of 50,000. Kutuzov was forced to retreat along the right bank of the Danube, fighting rearguard battles. Napoleon sent an army corps under Marshal E. Mortier to the left bank to cut off the Russians’ path of retreat at Krems. Napoleon intended to surround the Russian troops and to destroy them in the area of Sankt Polten. Guessing the intent of his opponent, Kutuzov quickly moved his army to the north and sent it across the Danube at Krems. Mortier’s corps was stretched along the Danube for a considerable distance, with its main division approaching Dürnstein, southwest of Krems. Kutuzov directed part of his troops to meet the enemy head-on but dispatched most of his forces farther north; circling the French, these troops attacked them from the flank and rear. The French column was completely smashed and lost as many as 6,000 men. Mortier’s corps crossed back to the right bank of the Danube. Napoleon’s plan was wrecked and the Russian Army was able to continue its march to Olmütz (now Olomouc).

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