Battle of Bratislava
DateOctober 25 - November 10, 1938
Result Decisive Hungarian victory
Flag of the Czech Republic Czechoslovakia

Flag of Hungary (1915-1918, 1919-1946; 3-2 aspect ratio) Hungary
Flag of the German Reich (1935–1945) Nazi Germany
Flag of the Czech Republic Brig. Gen. Bohuslav Všetička White flag Flag of Hungary (1915-1918, 1919-1946; 3-2 aspect ratio) Maj. Gen. Milán Temessy
• 15. divize “Jánošík”
• II Corps

• 16. Infanterie-Division
• Panzer Regiment 3
Casualties and losses
1629 killed, 809 WIA, 1167 POWs
540 killed, 75 WIA

The Battle of Bratislava (sometimes called the Siege of Bratislava) was a military engagement between the Republic of Czechoslovakia and the Kingdom of Hungary fought between October 25 and November 10, 1938, over the control of the capital of Slovakia, Bratislava. It was one of the few Hungarians victories in the first part of the campaign.


While the Hungarians made the largest gains in the winter period, they were suffering from lack of ammunition and supplies, as well as winter clothing and heavy casualties, and the Hungarians suffered heavy casualties for each advance they made.

The Slovak capital had, to the Czechs' surprise, not yet been attacked by land forces, and only been targeted by a few Luftwaffe bombing missions at railway stations, government buildings and airports.

The battle

At 1000 on November 3, the 4th Infantry Brigade began their assault on Bratislava, while the 2nd Huszar Regiment advanced north of the city in order to prevent an escape by the 15. divize “Jánošík”. At noon the Hungarians received the report by the OKH that they had put the 16. Infanterie-Division and Panzer-Regiment 3 at the Hungarian's disposal. They were immediately dispated to secure the the encirclement of Bratislava and the assault itself. While the Panzer-Regiment 3 used their motorisation at their advantage, the support of the Germans were much welcomed by the Hungarians.

The same night Maj.Gen. Milán Temessy ordered the assault on Bratislava to be carried out at 0800 on November 6, 1938. In the meantime, Brig. Gen. Bohuslav Všetička, seeing he was encircled with no possibility to escape, decided to prepare for combat, mainly by putting up barricades and preparing gasoline bombs to be used against tanks.

At 0800 on November 6, 1938 The Hungarian-German assault was initiated, and by noon they had made several headways into the town. Meanwhile the Luftwaffe and artillery continued to bombard the defences in Bratislava and important facilities in the city itself. The Hungarians halted the offensive temporarily for around 10 hours in order to get the much needed ammunition supplies to the frontline infantry, which gave the Czechs an unexpected opportunity to reorganise the defences. The fighting continued into the night, without any real gains.

Heavy close combat fighting ensued for another 18 hours, until Brig. Gen. Všetička, with few reserves and little to no ammunition, and eager to avoid further civilian casualties, decided to capitulate to the Hungarians. At 07.30 on November 8 all Czech soldiers had laid down their arms.


The Czechs suffered 1629 killed, 809 wounded and the remaining 1167 were taken prisoner. The Hungarians and Germans suffered a total of 540 killed and 75 wounded.

See also

Invasion of Czechoslovakia
Battle of the Border
Opava    Bruntál    Šatov    Znojmo    Křelovice   České Budějovice

Bohemian front
Plzeň    Hořovice    Prague    Tábor    Hradec Králové    Kutná Hora    Jihlava

Moravian front
Prchala offensive   Hranice   Šternberk   Olomouc    Brno    Blansko    Vyškov    Třebíč    Vyškov    M Line

Polish front
Zaolzie Campaign

Hungarian invasion of Czechoslovakia
Komárno    Levice    Nitra    Zvolen    Kosiče    Užhorod    Trenčín