Die Schlachtkapelle, , gemälde. Sempach. Foto/Photo: TES.

Habsburg and the Confederation 1386-1499

(Eidgenossenschaft) tried to expand their influence. Lucerne, Zurich, Schwyz, Obwalden, Nidwalden and Glarus undertook raids and war campaigns against the Habsburgs.

Leopold III then marched on Lucerne. On 9 July, he met troops from Lucerne and the Waldstätten above Sempach. Little is known about the course of the battle. Only Leopold’s death and defeat are certain.

The victory of the Confederation at Sempach strengthened their position but by no means meant the end of Habsburg’s presence in this region. The Habsburgs suffered a second major defeat on 9 April 1388 near Näfels (Canton Glarus). In 1415 the Confederation conquered Aargau, and in 1460 Thurgau.

Habsburg formally gave up these territories in the “Ewigen Richtung” in 1474. In 1499 the Swabian War (Schwabenkrieg) put a definitive end to the Habsburg rule in Switzerland (except for a few abbeys and dominions, including Tarasp, Obersaxen and Rhäzuns).  

The mural in the chapel is attributed to the painter Hans Ulrich Wägman (1583-1648). It was painted during the reconstruction of 1638-1641.

The painting shows on the left the Confederates, in the middle the hero Winkelried, and the fallen Duke Leopold III in front of him. On the far right, fleeing knights can be seen; on the left of the painting, a group of Confederates