Battle of Cetate
The Battle of Cetate was fought during the Crimean War
Crimean War
The Crimean War was a conflict fought between the Russian Empire and an alliance of the French Empire, the British Empire, the Ottoman Empire, and the Kingdom of Sardinia. The war was part of a long-running contest between the major European powers for influence over territories of the declining...

. In this battle an Ottoman force under Ahmed Pasha attempted to capture the town of Cetate
Cetate, Dolj
Cetate is a commune in Dolj County, Romania with a population of 6,000 people. It is composed of two villages, Cetate and Moreni.In January 1854, during the Crimean War, Cetate was the scene of a battle between a Russian garrison there and a Turkish army based in Kalafat. The battle was...

 in Wallachia
Wallachia or Walachia is a historical and geographical region of Romania. It is situated north of the Danube and south of the Southern Carpathians...

, but were unsuccessful.


This battle took place during the Danube campaign of the Crimean War. In the build-up to war, Russia had occupied the Danubian Principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia, positioning troops on the northern) left bank of the Danube
The Danube is a river in the Central Europe and the Europe's second longest river after the Volga. It is classified as an international waterway....

, the border of Ottoman territory. The Ottoman Empire had responded by moving troops to the right bank to face them.
In the west, on the border with Austria and Serbia, Russian troops in Cetate were faced by Ottoman forces in the fortress of Vidin
Vidin is a port town on the southern bank of the Danube in northwestern Bulgaria. It is close to the borders with Serbia and Romania, and is also the administrative centre of Vidin Province, as well as of the Metropolitan of Vidin...

Following the Ottoman ultimatum on 4 October 1853 to withdraw within 2 weeks, Ottoman forces under Ahmed Pasha crossed the river and occupied the town of Kalafat
Calafat is a city in Dolj County, Romania, on the river Danube, opposite the Bulgarian city of Vidin, to which it is linked by ferryboat. The construction of the Calafat-Vidin Bridge is planned between the two cities....

, which they fortified as a bridgehead.


On 31 December 1853 Ahmed Pasha and a force of several thousand cavalry, supported by infantry, advanced to attack Cetate, which was held by a Russian detachment, under Colonel AK Baumgarten.
This attack was repulsed, after which both sides called up reinforcements.
On 6 January 1854 (Christmas Day in the Orthodox calendar) Ahmed renewed his assault with a force of 18,000 men. This was successful, and the Russian force was driven from the town with heavy losses. However, Russian reinforcements were also arriving during the day, and Ahmed, fearing an assault on his base and being cut off himself, abandoned the town and retreated to Kalafat.


The battle at Cetate was ultimately indecisive. After heavy casualties on both sides, both armies were back at their start positions.
The Ottoman forces were still in a strong position and barring contact between the Russians and the Serbs, to whom they looked for support, but were themselves no nearer driving the Russians from the Principalities, their stated aim.
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