Battle of Mir (1812)

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Battle of Mir (1812)
Part of the French invasion of Russia (1812)
Cossacks at Mir.jpg
Cossack cavalry deployed at Mir (by V. Mazurovsky)
Date9–10 July 1812
Location Mir, Russian Empire (present-day Belarus)
53°27′N26°28′E / 53.450°N 26.467°E / 53.450; 26.467 Coordinates: 53°27′N26°28′E / 53.450°N 26.467°E / 53.450; 26.467
Result Russian victory [1]
Belligerents
Flag of Poland (1807-1815).svg Duchy of Warsaw Coat of Arms of Russian Empire.svg Russian Empire [2]
Commanders and leaders
Flag of Poland (1807-1815).svg Alexander Rozniecki
Tyszkiewicz
Coat of Arms of Russian Empire.svg Matvei Platov
Alexander Vasilchikov
Strength

~3000 men, ~ 2 guns:

  • 2nd, 3rd, 7th, 11th, 15th, and 16th Uhlan Regiments
  • Polish 4th Chasseurs
  • One horse battery

~9000 men, 24 guns:

  • Eight Cossack regiments
  • Two Don batteries
  • Akhtyrka Hussars
  • Kiev and New Russia Dragoons
  • Two horse batteries
  • Lithuanian Uhlans
  • 5th Jaegers
Casualties and losses
700 killed, 248 taken prisoner Around 180 killed and wounded, [1] including two Cossack colonels killed

The Battle of Mir took place on 9 and 10 July 1812 during Napoleon's invasion of Russia. Three Polish Lancers divisions battled against Russian cavalry, ending in the first major Russian victory in the French invasion of Russia. [3]

Napoleon 18th/19th-century French monarch, military and political leader

Napoléon Bonaparte was a French statesman and military leader who rose to prominence during the French Revolution and led several successful campaigns during the French Revolutionary Wars. He was Emperor of the French as Napoleon I from 1804 until 1814 and again briefly in 1815 during the Hundred Days. Napoleon dominated European and global affairs for more than a decade while leading France against a series of coalitions in the Napoleonic Wars. He won most of these wars and the vast majority of his battles, building a large empire that ruled over much of continental Europe before its final collapse in 1815. He is considered one of the greatest commanders in history, and his wars and campaigns are studied at military schools worldwide. Napoleon's political and cultural legacy has endured as one of the most celebrated and controversial leaders in human history.

French invasion of Russia Napoleon Bonapartes attempted conquest of the Russian Empire

The French invasion of Russia, known in Russia as the Patriotic War of 1812 and in France as the Russian Campaign, began on 24 June 1812 when Napoleon's Grande Armée crossed the Neman River in an attempt to engage and defeat the Russian army. Napoleon hoped to compel Tsar Alexander I of Russia to cease trading with British merchants through proxies in an effort to pressure the United Kingdom to sue for peace. The official political aim of the campaign was to liberate Poland from the threat of Russia. Napoleon named the campaign the Second Polish War to gain favor with the Poles and provide a political pretext for his actions.

Cavalry soldiers or warriors fighting from horseback

Cavalry or horsemen are soldiers or warriors who fight mounted on horseback. Cavalry were historically the most mobile of the combat arms. An individual soldier in the cavalry is known by a number of designations such as cavalryman, horseman, dragoon, or trooper. The designation of cavalry was not usually given to any military forces that used other animals, such as camels, mules or elephants. Infantry who moved on horseback, but dismounted to fight on foot, were known in the 17th and early 18th centuries as dragoons, a class of mounted infantry which later evolved into cavalry proper while retaining their historic title.

Russian general Matvei Platov had eight Cossack regiments and two Don batteries deployed south of the village of Mir, when one brigade of the Polish Fourth Light Cavalry attacked his advance posts, numbering about 100 men. These advance posts had the dual job of both observation and sentry duty, and to entice the enemy to attack; ambushes of a hundred men each were set up farther down the road to Mir, on either side of it. [4] The Polish general Alexander Rosniecki's forces clashed with Russian Alexander Vasilchikov's cavalry, resulting in hand-to-hand combat with fairly even losses. Followed by Uhlans, they swept through the village, attacking Platov's main force. A third Polish brigade attempting to join the fight was encircled and broken by Cossacks, after which the entire Polish force gave ground, driven back with the aid of Russian Hussars. [5] After the arrival of Vasilchikov's Akhtyrka Hussars, Dragoons, and other reinforcements, the battle raged for six hours, shifting to the nearby village of Simiakovo. Platov defeated the enemy there, and moved on to Mir, where he inflicted further losses on the enemy before tactically withdrawing. [6] A complete rout was only averted by Tyszkiewicz's brigade, which covered the Polish retreat. [5]

Matvei Platov Russian general

Count Matvei Ivanovich Platov was a Russian general who commanded the Don Cossacks in the Napoleonic wars and founded Novocherkassk as the new capital of the Don Host Province.

Mir, Belarus Urban-type settlement in Belarus

Mir is a town in Kareličy (Карэлічы) raion, Hrodna Voblast, Belarus on the banks of Miranka River, about 85 kilometers southwest of the national capital, Minsk.

Alexander Vasilchikov Russian favorite

Alexander Semyonovich Vasilchikov was a Russian aristocrat who became the lover of Catherine the Great from 1772 to 1774.

The town of Mir and fort ruins were used as a headquarters by Jérôme Bonaparte, until he decided or had to leave the army, after a quarrel with his brother on 6 August 1812. [7] After retreating, the Mir Castle was destroyed with gunpowder.

Headquarters Location where an organizations key leadership and coordination functions take place

Headquarters denotes the location where most, if not all, of the important functions of an organization are coordinated. In the United States, the corporate headquarters represents the entity at the center or the top of a corporation taking full responsibility for managing all business activities. In the United Kingdom, the term head office is most commonly used for the HQs of large corporations. The term is also used regarding military organizations.

Jérôme Bonaparte Napoleon Is brother

Jérôme-Napoléon Bonaparte was the youngest brother of Napoleon I and reigned as Jerome I, King of Westphalia, between 1807 and 1813. From 1816 onward, he bore the title of Prince of Montfort. After 1848, when his nephew, Louis Napoleon, became President of the French Second Republic, he served in several official roles, including Marshal of France from 1850 onward, and President of the Senate in 1852.

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References

  1. 1 2 Smith, Digby (1998) The Napoleonic Wars Data Book, Greenhill, London: ISBN   1-85367-276-9
  2. Note that although no official flag existed during this period, the tricolour represents the officer sash colours and the Double Eagle represents the Tsar's official state symbol.
  3. http://www.napoleon-series.org/military/listings/c_russia.html
  4. Journal of the Military Service Institution of the United States, Volume 19. 1896.
  5. 1 2 Foord, Edward A. (1915). Napoleon's Russian campaign of 1812. Little, Brown and Co.
  6. http://www.napolun.com/mirror/napoleonistyka.atspace.com/cossacks.htm
  7. Davies, Norman (1998). Europe: a History. HarperCollins.