Lacplesis Day (Lāčplēša Diena in Latvian) is the day to remember who lost their lives for their freedom war where they got their total freedom 700 years later. It is also the start of the Patriotism Week.
Lacplesis Day – Lāčplēša diena
Lacplesis Day is one of the most impotant day in Latvia. It takes its name from Latvian folk hero Lacplesis. People fire candles next to Daugava River at 11. November and they honor the people who lost their lives for freedom of Latvia.
Latvia have lived under occupation enarly for 700 years. After a long time Latvia get accepted as a free country on 1921. But process starts at 1918 with truce at the end of World War 1. Now lets see it step by step.
Road to freedom
German Empire sings the truce which ends World War 1.
First law institute, council and temporary goverment was found. Jānis Čakste has became first president of council and Kārlis Ulmanis has became first president.
Republic of Latvia was declared at Riga.
Red Army occupied Latvia.
First Latvian freedom battalion was found under command of Oskars Kalpaks.
Most of Latvia got under control of Red Army.
Baltic-German mercenaries took down goverment of Kārlis Ulmanis.
Some of the lands got under control of Latvian armed forces. Estonians and Baltic Resistance Army which were fighting with Soviets gave huge support to that.
Commander Pavel Bermondt-Avalov and Kazakh forces got control of White Russian volunteer forces from Prince Anatoly Lieven which were at Baltics. These forces got united with West Russian Volunteer Army later which is under command of General Rüdiger von der Goltz.
West Russian Volunteer Army made a crushing sudden attach. They got control of Pardaugava. Both sides settle on each sides of Daugava River.
Latvian army starts counterattack with support of Estonian armored trains and kingdom army. And final combat begins.
There was 32.000 Latvian soldiers against 45.000 soldiers of Bermondt. Army of Bermondt had 100 cannons, 600 machine gun and 100 planes. Meanwhile Latvian army had 20 cannons, 173 machine guns and 3 planes.
Army of Bermondt shoots Latvian flag which is over Riga Castle for provocation. They have found 86 holes on flag after war.
Latvian army pushes back army of Bermondt. Riga was successfuly defendes by cleaning the enemy from Torņakalns on 10th of November
Latvias biggest victory was declared with the bell sounds from churches at morning. This is the Lacplesis day.
Later Pavel Bermondt-Avalov leaves his army and fled to Germany.
Latvia has signed truce with Germany and Russia in 1920.
If you will be in Latvia between 11-18 November, you may tie a Latvian flag ribbon to your collar on shape of V (Victory) then you may honor these heroes at Lacplesis day. You may also light a candle on side of Daugava River for them.