Ivan Diebitsch-Zabalkansky Ivan Diebitsch-Zabalkansky was a German-born soldier serving as Russian Field Marshal. He was educated at the Berlin cadet school, but by the desire of his father, Frederick II's aide-de-camp who had passed into the service of Russia, he also did the same in He served in the campaign of 1805, and was wounded at Austerlitz, fought at Eylau and Friedland, and after Friedland was promoted captain. During the next five years of peace he devoted himself to the study of military science, engaging once more in active service in the War of He distinguished himself very greatly in Wittgenstein's campaign, and in particular at Polotsk (October 18 and 19), after which combat he was raised to the rank of major-general. In the latter part of the campaign he served against the Prussian contingent of General Yorck (von Wartenburg), with whom, through Clausewitz, he negotiated the celebrated convention of Tauroggen, serving thereafter with Yorck in the early part of the War of Liberation.
Nikolay Raevsky Nikolay Raevsky was a Russian general and statesman who achieved fame for his feats of arms during the Napoleonic wars. His family left a lasting legacy in Russian society and culture. During Napoleon's Invasion of Russia, Raevsky led the 7th Infantry Corps, a part of the 2nd Army led by Prince Pyotr Bagration. In the advance-guard, Raevsky was responsible for delaying Davout's advance towards Moscow. After the Battle of Saltanovka, he retreated to Smolensk, where he took part in the battle for the city. During the Battle of Borodino, he protected the right wing of the Russian Army, better known as the Raevsky Redoubt, winning the Order of St. George of the 3rd degree. Later he pursued La Grande Armée and took part in the Battle of Maloyaroslavets and Battle of Krasnoi, in which he helped defeat Marshal Ney. Raevsky commanded the Grenadier Corps and protected the retreat of main forces during the Battle of Bautzen. After Austria and Prussia joined the Allies, Raevsky's corps joined the Bohemian Army commanded by Karl Philipp Fürst zu Schwarzenberg. He received the Order of St. Vladimir of the 1st degree for the Battle of Kulm. Near Wachau, he was seriously injured. For his feats of arms he was promoted Full General and received the Austrian Military Order of Maria Theresa of the 3rd degree. When the Russian army entered Saxony, Raevsky was forced to return to Russia because of his poor health. Having recovered from his illness, Raevsky rejoined the army at the Rhine, taking the command from Peter Wittgenstein and leading this army during the taking of Paris. After Napoleons defeat, General Raevsky was given the honor of entering Paris at Alexander Is side.
Pyotr Bagration Prince Pyotr Ivanovich was a general of the Russian army. He was a descendant of the Georgian royal family of the Bagrations. Bagration was born in 1765 to a Georgian prince of the Bagratid dynasty, Colonel Prince Ivan Alexandrovich Bagration. His brother Roman (Revaz) Bagrationi was also a general of the Russian army. In 1812, Bagration commanded the 2nd army of the West, and a few days before Napoleon's invasion on 24 June he suggested to Alexander I a pre-emptive strike into the Duchy of Warsaw. Though defeated at Mogilev, Bagration led his forces to join the 1st army at Smolensk under Barclay de Tolly, to whom he ceded overall command of both armies on 2 August. Bagration led the left wing at the Battle of Borodino, where he constructed a number of flèches- due to a shortage of engineer officers though, these were poorly designed. During the battle he received a mortal wound and later died on 24 September, in the village of Simi, which belonged to his aunt. It is said that, while wounded, Bagration kept giving orders to the troops without knowing that the Russian army was abandoning Moscow. When he finally heard the truth, Bagration was so shocked that he rapidly stood up, totally forgetting about his grave wound. Such an act was too much for his severely wounded body and it quickly cost Bagration his life.
Michael Andreas Barclay de Tolly Michael Andreas Barclay de Tolly was a Russian Field Marshal and Minister of War during Napoleon's invasion in 1812 and War of the Sixth Coalition. During Napoleon's Invasion of Russia in 1812 Barclay assumed the supreme command of the 1st Army of the West, the largest of the Russian armies facing Napoleon. He proposed the now famous scorched earth strategy of drawing the enemy deep into one's own territory and retreated to the village of Tsaryovo-Zaimishche between Moscow and Smolensk. Nevertheless, the Russians keenly opposed the appointment of a foreigner as commander-in-chief. His rivals spread rumors of him being Napoleon's agent, and the populace condemned him as a coward. Barclay was forced by his subordinates and the Tsar to engage Napoleon at Smolensk. Napoleon forced Barclay to retreat when he threatened Barclay's only escape route. After losing the Holy City of Smolensk, the outcry of officers and civilians grew to a point where the Tsar could no longer ignore it. He appointed Kutuzov, previously a general at the battle of Austerlitz, as the over-all commander of the Russian Forces. Barclay remained General of the 1st Army of the West. Barclay commanded the right flank at the Battle of Borodino with great valor and presence of mind and during the celebrated council at Fili advised Kutuzov to surrender unfortified Moscow to the enemy. His illness made itself known at that time and he was forced to leave the army soon afterwards. After Napoleon was driven from Russia, the eventual success of Barclay's tactics made him a romantic hero, misunderstood by his contemporaries and rejected by the court. His popularity soared, and his honour was restored by the tsar.
Mikhail Golenishchev-Kutuzov Mikhail Golenishchev-Kutuzov was a Field Marshal of the Russian Empire. Kutuzov contributed much to the military history of Russia and is considered to have been one of the best Russian generals under the reign of Catherine II. He took part in the suppression of the Bar Confederation's uprising, in three of the Russo-Turkish Wars and in the Napoleonic War, including two major battles at Austerlitz and the battle of Borodino. When Napoleon invaded Russia in 1812, Michael Andreas Barclay de Tolly chose to follow the scorched earth principle and retreat rather than to risk a major battle. His strategy aroused grudges from most of the generals and soldiers, notably Prince Pyotr Bagration. As Alexander had to choose a new general, there was only one choice: Kutuzov. He found popularity among the troops mainly because he was Russian, he was brave, he had proven himself in battle, strongly believed in the Russian Orthodox Church, and he looked out for the troops well-being. The nobles and clergy also regarded Kutuzov highly. Therefore, when Kutuzov was appointed commander-in-chief and arrived with the Russian army on 17 August 1812, the nation greeted Kutuzov with delight. Only Alexander, repulsed by Kutuzovs physique and irrationally holding him responsible for the defeat at Austerlitz did not celebrate Kutuzovs commission. Within two weeks Kutuzov decided to give major battle on approaches to Moscow. Two huge armies clashed near Borodino on 7 September 1812 in what has been described as the greatest battle in human history up to that date, involving nearly a quarter of a million soldiers. The result of the battle was inconclusive, with a third of the French and half of the Russian army killed or wounded. After a conference at the village of Fili, Kutuzov fell back on the strategy of his predecessor: withdraw in order to save the Russian army as long as possible. This came at the price of losing Moscow, whose population was evacuated. Having retreated along the Kaluga road and replenished his munitions, he forced Napoleon into retreat in the Battle of Maloyaroslavets. The old general's cautious pursuit evoked much criticism, but ultimately only a small remnant of the Grand Army returned to Prussian soil alive. Hence the Russian general's caution was thoroughly vindicated. Kutuzov now held the rank of Field Marshal and had been awarded the victory title of His Serene Highness Knyaz Smolensky having achieved this title for a victory over part of the French army at Smolensk in November 1812.