Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher

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Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher
Blucher (nach Gebauer).jpg
Blücher (as he appeared ca. 1815–1819)
Nickname(s)Marschall Vorwärts
Born(1742-12-16)16 December 1742
Rostock, Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, Holy Roman Empire
Died12 September 1819(1819-09-12) (aged 76)
Krieblowitz, Province of Silesia, Kingdom of Prussia, German Confederation
(present-day Krobielowice, Lower Silesia Voivodeship, Poland)
AllegianceSweden-Flag-1562.svg  Sweden
Flag of the Kingdom of Prussia (1803-1892).svg  Prussia
Service/branch Prussian Army
Years of service1758–1815
Rank Flag of the Kingdom of Prussia (1803-1892).svg Generalfeldmarschall
Battles/wars Seven Years' War

Prussian invasion of Holland
French Revolutionary Wars
Napoleonic Wars

Contents

Awards Star of the Grand Cross of the Iron Cross
Pour le Mérite
Iron Cross
Order of St. George
Military William Order

Gebhard Leberecht von [lower-alpha 1] Blücher, Fürst [lower-alpha 2] von Wahlstatt (German pronunciation: [ˈɡɛphaɐ̯t ˈleːbəʁɛçt fɔn ˈblʏçɐ] ; 16 December 1742 – 12 September 1819), Graf (count), later elevated to Fürst (sovereign prince) von Wahlstatt, was a Prussian Generalfeldmarschall (field marshal). He earned his greatest recognition after leading his army against Napoleon I at the Battle of the Nations at Leipzig in 1813 and the Battle of Waterloo in 1815.

<i lang="de" title="German language text">Graf</i> historical title of the German nobility

Graf (male) or Gräfin (female) is a historical title of the German nobility, usually translated as "count". Considered to be intermediate among noble ranks, the title is often treated as equivalent to the British title of "earl".

Fürst is a German word for a ruler and is also a princely title. Fürsten were, since the Middle Ages, members of the highest nobility who ruled over states of the Holy Roman Empire and later its former territories, below the ruling Kaiser (emperor) or König (king).

Kingdom of Prussia Former German state (1701–1918)

The Kingdom of Prussia was a German kingdom that constituted the state of Prussia between 1701 and 1918. It was the driving force behind the unification of Germany in 1871 and was the leading state of the German Empire until its dissolution in 1918. Although it took its name from the region called Prussia, it was based in the Margraviate of Brandenburg, where its capital was Berlin.

Blücher was born in Rostock, the son of a retired army captain. His military career began in 1758 as a hussar in the Swedish Army. He was captured by the Prussians in 1760 during the Pomeranian Campaign and thereafter joined the Prussian Army, serving as a hussar officer for Prussia during the remainder of the Seven Years' War. In 1773, Blücher was forced to resign by Frederick the Great for insubordination. He worked as a farmer until the death of Frederick in 1786, when Blücher was reinstated and promoted to colonel. For his success in the French Revolutionary Wars, Blücher became a major general in 1794. He became a lieutenant general in 1801 and commanded the cavalry corps during the Napoleonic Wars in 1806.

Rostock Place in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany

Rostock, officially the Hanseatic City of Rostock, is the largest city in the German federal state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and lies in the Mecklenburgian part of the state, close to the border with Pomerania. With around 208,000 inhabitants, it is the third largest city on the German Baltic coast after Kiel and Lübeck, the eighth largest city in the area of former East Germany, as well as the 39th largest city of Germany. Rostock was the largest coastal and most important port city in East Germany.

Hussar light cavalry specialized in scouting and raiding

A hussar was a member of a class of light cavalry, originating in Central Europe during the 15th and 16th centuries. The title and distinctive dress of these horsemen were subsequently widely adopted by light cavalry regiments in European armies in the late 17th and early 18th centuries.

Swedish Army land warfare branch of Swedens military

The Swedish Army is a branch of the Swedish Armed Forces whose main responsibility is land operations.

War broke out between Prussia and France again in 1813 and Blücher returned to active service at the age of 71. He was appointed full general over the Prussian field forces and clashed with Napoleon at the Battles of Lützen and Bautzen. Later he won a critical victory over the French at the Battle of Katzbach. Blücher commanded the Prussian Army of Silesia at the Battle of the Nations where Napoleon was decisively defeated. For his role, Blücher was made a field marshal and received his title of Prince of Wahlstatt. After Napoleon’s return in 1815, Blücher took command of the Prussian Army of the Lower Rhine and coordinated his force with that of the British and Allied forces under the Duke of Wellington. At the Battle of Ligny, he was severely injured and the Prussians retreated. After recovering, Blücher resumed command and joined Wellington at the Battle of Waterloo, with the intervention of Blücher's army playing a decisive role in the final allied victory.

Battle of Lützen (1813) battle during the War of the Sixth Coalition, 1813

In the Battle of Lützen, Napoleon I of France halted the advances of the Sixth Coalition after the French invasion of Russia and the massive French losses in the campaign. The Russian commander, Prince Peter Wittgenstein, attempting to forestall Napoleon's capture of Leipzig, attacked the isolated French right wing near Lützen, Germany. After a day of heavy fighting, the combined Prussian and Russian force retreated; due to French losses and a shortage of French cavalry, Napoleon was unable to conduct a pursuit.

Battle of Bautzen battle

In the Battle of Bautzen a combined Russian–Prussian army, that was massively outnumbered, was pushed back by Napoleon I of France but escaped destruction, some sources claiming that Michel Ney failed to block their retreat. The Prussians under Count Gebhard von Blücher and Russians under Prince Peter Wittgenstein, retreating after their defeat at Lützen were attacked by French forces under Napoleon.

Silesia Historical region

Silesia is a historical region of Central Europe located mostly in Poland, with small parts in the Czech Republic and Germany. Its area is about 40,000 km2 (15,444 sq mi), and its population about 8,000,000. Silesia is located along the Oder River. It consists of Lower Silesia and Upper Silesia.

Blücher was made an honorary citizen of Berlin, Hamburg and Rostock. Known for his fiery personality, he was nicknamed Marschall Vorwärts ("Marshal Forward") by his soldiers because of his aggressive approach in warfare. [1] Along with Paul von Hindenburg, he was the highest-decorated Prussian-German soldier in history: Blücher and Hindenburg are the only German military officers to have been awarded the Star of the Grand Cross of the Iron Cross. A statue once stood in the square that bore his name, Blücherplatz in Breslau. [2]

Paul von Hindenburg Prussian-German field marshal, statesman, and president of Germany

Paul Ludwig Hans Anton von Beneckendorff und von Hindenburg, known simply as Paul von Hindenburg was a German general and statesman who commanded the Imperial German Army during World War I and later became President of Germany, serving from 1925 until his death in 1934, during the period of the Weimar Republic. He played a key role in the Nazi "Seizure of Power" in January 1933 when, under pressure from advisers, he appointed Adolf Hitler chancellor of a "Government of National Concentration", even though the Nazis were a minority in both the cabinet and the Reichstag.

Star of the Grand Cross of the Iron Cross decoration

The Star of the Grand Cross of the Iron Cross was the highest military decoration of the Kingdom of Prussia and the German Empire. It was considered a senior decoration to the Grand Cross of the Iron Cross.

Biography

Early life

Blücher was born on 16 December 1742 in Rostock, a Baltic port in northern Germany, then in the Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin. [3] His father was a retired army captain, and his family belonged to the nobility and had been landowners in northern Germany since at least the 13th century. [4]

Northern Germany is the region in the northern part of Germany which exact area is not precisely or consistently defined. It varies depending on whether one has a linguistic, geographic, socio-cultural or historic standpoint. The five coastal states are regularly referred to as Northern Germany. Though geographically in the northern half of Germany, Westphalia, Brandenburg, and the northern parts of Saxony-Anhalt are rarely referred to as Northern Germany and instead are almost always associated with Western Germany and the historic East Germany respectively.

Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin duchy in northern Germany created in 1701

The Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin was a duchy in northern Germany created in 1701, when Frederick William and Adolphus Frederick II divided the Duchy of Mecklenburg between Schwerin and Strelitz. Ruled by the successors of the Nikloting House of Mecklenburg, Mecklenburg-Schwerin remained a state of the Holy Roman Empire along the Baltic Sea littoral between Holstein-Glückstadt and Duchy of Pomerania.

He began his military career at the age of 16, [lower-alpha 3] when he joined the Swedish Army as a hussar. [5] At the time, Sweden was at war with Prussia in the Seven Years' War. Blücher took part in the Pomeranian campaign of 1760, where Prussian hussars captured him in a skirmish. The colonel of the Prussian regiment, Wilhelm Sebastian von Belling (a distant relative), was impressed with the young hussar and had him join his own regiment. [3] [6]

Sweden constitutional monarchy in Northern Europe

Sweden, officially the Kingdom of Sweden, is a Scandinavian Nordic country in Northern Europe. It borders Norway to the west and north and Finland to the east, and is connected to Denmark in the southwest by a bridge-tunnel across the Öresund Strait. At 450,295 square kilometres (173,860 sq mi), Sweden is the largest country in Northern Europe, the third-largest country in the European Union and the fifth largest country in Europe by area. The capital city is Stockholm. Sweden has a total population of 10.3 million of which 2.5 million have a foreign background. It has a low population density of 22 inhabitants per square kilometre (57/sq mi) and the highest urban concentration is in the central and southern half of the country.

Prussia state in Central Europe between 1525–1947

Prussia was a historically prominent German state that originated in 1525 with a duchy centred on the region of Prussia on the southeast coast of the Baltic Sea. It was de facto dissolved by an emergency decree transferring powers of the Prussian government to German Chancellor Franz von Papen in 1932 and de jure by an Allied decree in 1947. For centuries, the House of Hohenzollern ruled Prussia, successfully expanding its size by way of an unusually well-organised and effective army. Prussia, with its capital first in Königsberg and then, in 1701, in Berlin, decisively shaped the history of Germany.

Seven Years War Global conflict between 1756 and 1763

The Seven Years' War was a global war fought between 1756 and 1763. It involved every European great power of the time and spanned five continents, affecting Europe, the Americas, West Africa, India, and the Philippines. The conflict split Europe into two coalitions: one was led by the Kingdom of Great Britain and included the Kingdom of Prussia, the Kingdom of Portugal, the Electorate of Brunswick-Lüneburg, and other small German states; while the other was led by the Kingdom of France and included the Austrian-led Holy Roman Empire, the Russian Empire, the Kingdom of Spain, Sweden, and the Electorate of Saxony. Meanwhile, in India, some regional polities within the increasingly fragmented Mughal Empire, with the support of the French, tried to crush a British attempt to conquer Bengal.

Blücher took part in the later battles of the Seven Years' War, and as a hussar officer, gained much experience in light cavalry work. In peace, however, his ardent spirit led him into excesses of all kinds, such as the mock execution of a priest suspected of supporting Polish uprisings in 1772. As a result, he was passed over for promotion to major. Blücher submitted a rude letter of resignation in 1773, which Frederick the Great replied to with "Captain Blücher can take himself to the devil" (1773). [3]

Blücher settled down to farming. Within 15 years, he had acquired independence and had become a Freemason. During Frederick the Great's lifetime, Blücher could not return to the army. However, the monarch died in 1786, and the following year, Blücher was reinstated as a major in his old regiment, the Red Hussars. He took part in the expedition to the Netherlands in 1787, and the next year was promoted to lieutenant colonel. In 1789, he received Prussia's highest military order, the Pour le Mérite , and in 1794, he became colonel of the Red Hussars. In 1793 and 1794, Blücher distinguished himself in cavalry actions against the French, and for his victory at Kirrweiler on 28 May 1794, he was promoted to major general. In 1801, he was made a lieutenant general. [3]

Napoleonic Wars

Marschall Vorwarts by Emil Hunten (1863) Marschall Vorwarts (1863).jpg
Marschall Vorwärts by Emil Hünten (1863)

Blücher was one of the leaders of the war party in Prussia in 1805, and he served as a cavalry general in the disastrous campaign of 1806. At the double Battle of Jena-Auerstedt, Blücher fought at Auerstedt, repeatedly leading the charges of the Prussian cavalry, but without success. During the retreat of the broken armies, he commanded the rearguard composed of Frederick Louis, Prince of Hohenlohe's corps. [3] With the capitulation of the main body after the Battle of Prenzlau on 28 October, [3] he found his march toward the north-east blocked. [7] He led the remnant of his corps away to the north-west. [3] Reinforcing his numbers with a division previously commanded by Karl August, Grand Duke of Saxe-Weimar, Blücher and his new chief of staff, Gerhard von Scharnhorst, reorganised his forces into two small corps totaling 21,000 men and 44 cannons. [8] Nevertheless, he was defeated by two French corps at the Battle of Lübeck [3] on 6 November. The next day, trapped against the Danish frontier by 40,000 French troops, he was compelled to surrender with less than 10,000 soldiers at Ratekau. [9] Blücher insisted that clauses be written in the capitulation document that he had had to surrender due to lack of provisions and ammunition, [3] and that his soldiers should be honoured by a French formation along the street. He was allowed to keep his sabre and to move freely, bound only by his word of honour, [10] and was soon exchanged for future Marshal Claude Victor-Perrin, Duc de Belluno, and was actively employed in Pomerania, at Berlin, and at Königsberg until the conclusion of the war. [3]

After the war, Blücher was looked upon as the natural leader of the Patriot Party, with which he was in close touch during the period of Napoleonic domination, but his hopes of an alliance with Austria in the war of 1809 were disappointed. In this year, he was made general of cavalry. In 1812, he expressed himself so openly on the alliance of Russia with France that he was recalled from his military governorship of Pomerania and virtually banished from the court. [3]

Gebhard Leberecht von Blucher in Bautzen by Bogdan Willewalde (1885) Gebhard Leberecht von Blucher in Bautzen 1813.jpg
Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher in Bautzen by Bogdan Willewalde (1885)

Following the start of the War of Liberation in the spring of 1813, Blücher was again placed in high command, and he was present at Lützen and Bautzen. During the summer truce, he worked on the organisation of the Prussian forces; when the war was resumed, he became commander-in-chief of the Army of Silesia, with August von Gneisenau and Karl von Müffling as his principal staff officers and 40,000 Prussians and 50,000 Russians under his command during the autumn campaign. The most conspicuous military quality displayed by Blücher was his unrelenting energy. [3]

The irresolution and divergence of interests usual in Sixth Coalition armies found in him a restless opponent. Knowing that if he could not induce others to co-operate, he was prepared to attempt the task at hand by himself, which often caused other generals to follow his lead. He defeated Marshal MacDonald at the Katzbach, and by his victory over Marshal Marmont at Möckern led the way to the decisive defeat of Napoleon at the Battle of the Nations at Leipzig. Blücher's own army stormed Leipzig on the evening of the last day of the battle. [3] This was the fourth battle between Napoleon and Blücher, and the first that Blücher had won.[ citation needed ]

On the day of Möckern (16 October 1813), Blücher was made a field marshal, and after the victory, he pursued the French with his accustomed energy. In the winter of 1813–1814, Blücher, with his chief staff officers, was mainly instrumental in inducing the Coalition sovereigns to carry the war into France itself. [3]

Old Blucher Beating the Corsican Big Drum, George Cruikshank, 8 April 1814 Cruikshank - Old Blucher beating the Corsican Big Drum.png
Old Blucher Beating the Corsican Big Drum, George Cruikshank, 8 April 1814

The Battle of Brienne and the Battle of La Rothière were the chief incidents of the first stage of the celebrated 1814 campaign in north-east France, and they were quickly followed by victories of Napoleon over Blücher at Champaubert, Vauchamps, and Montmirail. The courage of the Prussian leader was undiminished, though, and his victory against the vastly outnumbered French, at Laon (9 and 10 March) practically decided the fate of the campaign. [3] However, his health had been severely affected by the strains of the previous two months, and he now suffered a breakdown, during which he lost his sight and suffered a delusion that a Frenchman had impregnated him with an elephant. [11] Dominic Lieven wrote that the breakdown, "revealed the fragility of the coalition armies' command structure and just how much the Army of Silesia had depended on Blücher's drive, courage, and charisma.... The result was that for more than a week after the battle of Laon, the Army of Silesia... played no useful role in the war". [12]

After this, Blücher infused some of his energy into the operations of the Prince Schwarzenberg's Army of Bohemia, and at last this army and the Army of Silesia marched in one body directly towards Paris. The victory of Montmartre, the entry of the allies into the French capital, and the overthrow of the First Empire were the direct consequences. [3]

Blücher was inclined to punish the city of Paris severely for the sufferings of Prussia at the hands of the French armies, but the allied commanders intervened. Blowing up the Jena Bridge near the Champ de Mars [3] was said by the Duke of Wellington to have been one of his contemplated acts:

About blowing up the bridge of Jena there were two parties in the Prussian Army—Gneisenau and Muffling against, but Blücher violently for it. In spite of all I could do, he did make the attempt, even while I believe my sentinel was standing at one end of the bridge. But the Prussians had no experience of blowing up bridges. We, who had blown up so many in Spain, could have done it in five minutes. The Prussians made a hole in one of the pillars, but their powder blew out instead of up, and I believe hurt some of their own people. [13]

In gratitude for his victories in 1814, King Frederick William III of Prussia created Blücher Prince of Wahlstatt (in Silesia on the Katzbach battlefield). [3] [lower-alpha 4] The king also awarded him estates near Krieblowitz (now Krobielowice, Poland) in Lower Silesia and a grand mansion at 2, Pariser Platz in Berlin (which in 1930 became the Embassy of the United States, Berlin).[ citation needed ] Soon afterward, Blücher paid a visit to England, where he was received with royal honours and cheered enthusiastically everywhere he went. [3]

Hundred Days and later life

The Prussian attack on Plancenoit during the Battle of Waterloo, painted by Adolph Northen Prussian Attack Plancenoit by Adolf Northern.jpg
The Prussian attack on Plancenoit during the Battle of Waterloo, painted by Adolph Northen

After the war, Blücher retired to Silesia. However, the return of Napoleon from Elba and his entry into Paris at the start of the Hundred Days, called him back to service. He was put in command of the Army of the Lower Rhine, with General August von Gneisenau as his chief of staff. At the outset of the Waterloo Campaign of 1815, the Prussians sustained a serious defeat at Ligny (16 June), in the course of which the old field marshal lay trapped under his dead horse for several hours and was repeatedly ridden over by cavalry, his life saved only by the devotion of his aide-de-camp Count Nostitz, who threw a greatcoat over his commander to obscure Blücher's rank and identity from the passing French. As Blücher was unable to resume command for some hours, Gneisenau took command, drew off the defeated army, and rallied it. [3] In spite of Gneisenau's distrust of Wellington, he obeyed Blücher's last orders to direct the army's retreat towards Wavre, rather than Liege, to keep alive the possibility of joining the Prussian and Wellington's Anglo-allied armies together. [14]

After bathing his wounds in a liniment of rhubarb and garlic, and fortified by a liberal internal dose of schnapps, Blücher rejoined his army. Gneisenau feared that the British had reneged on their earlier agreements and favored a withdrawal, but Blücher convinced him to send two corps to join Wellington at Waterloo. [15] [16] He then led his army on a tortuous march along muddy paths, arriving on the field of Waterloo in the late afternoon. In spite of his age, the pain of his wounds, and the effort it must have taken for him to remain on horseback, Bernard Cornwell states that several soldiers attested to Blücher's high spirits and his determination to beat Napoleon:

"Forwards!" he was quoted as saying. "I hear you say it's impossible, but it has to be done! I have given my promise to Wellington, and you surely don't want me to break it? Push yourselves, my children, and we'll have victory!" It is impossible not to like Blücher. He was 74 years (sic) old, [17] still in pain and discomfort from his adventures at Ligny, still stinking of schnapps and of rhubarb liniment, yet he is all enthusiasm and energy. If Napoleon's demeanour that day was one of sullen disdain for an enemy he underestimated, and Wellington's a cold, calculating calmness that hid concern, then Blücher is all passion. [18]

Blucher and Wellington meeting close to La Belle Alliance Rencontre a Belle-Alliance.jpg
Blücher and Wellington meeting close to La Belle Alliance

With the battle hanging in the balance, Blücher's army intervened with decisive and crushing effect, his vanguard drawing off Napoleon's badly needed reserves, and his main body being instrumental in crushing French resistance. This victory led the way to a decisive victory through the relentless pursuit of the French by the Prussians. The two Coalition armies entered Paris on 7 July. [3]

Prince Blücher remained in the French capital for a few months, but his age and infirmities compelled him to retire to his Silesian residence at Krieblowitz. [3] At the invitation of the British government, he made another state visit to England, to be formally thanked for his army and his role in the Waterloo Campaign. When his carriage stopped on Blackheath Hill, overlooking London, he is said to have exclaimed, "What a city to sack!" [19] He died at Krieblowitz on 12 September 1819, aged 76. [3] After his death, an imposing mausoleum was built for his remains.[ citation needed ]

Assessment

According to his biography in the Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition (1911), Blucher retained, to the end of his life, the wildness and tendency to excesses which had caused his dismissal from the army in his youth, but these faults sprang from an ardent and vivid temperament which made him a leader of people. [20] While by no means a military genius, his sheer determination and ability to spring back from errors made him a competent leader. [3] [ failed verification ]

Campaigns

Publications

Coat of Arms of Count Blucher, Prince of Wahlstatt Blucher von Wahlstadt - Tyroff HA.jpg
Coat of Arms of Count Blücher, Prince of Wahlstatt

His campaign journal covering the years 1793 to 1794 was published in 1796:

A second edition of this diary, together with some of Blücher's letters, was published in 1914:

His collected writings and letters (together with those of Yorck and Gneisenau) appeared in 1932:

Family

Blücher was married twice: in 1773 to Karoline Amalie von Mehling (1756–1791) and in 1795 to Amalie von Colomb (1772–1850), sister of General Peter von Colomb. By his first marriage he had seven children, two sons and a daughter surviving infancy.[ citation needed ]

Ancestry

Descendants

The marshal's grandson, Count Gebhard Bernhard von Blücher (1799–1875), was created Prince Blücher of Wahlstatt (Serene Highness) in Prussia, a hereditary title in primogeniture, the other members of his branch bearing the title count or countess. In 1832, he bought Raduň Castle in the Opava District and in 1847 the lands at Wahlstatt, Legnickie Pole, all of which remained in the family until the flight and expulsion of Germans from Poland and Czechoslovakia in 1945, which forced the family into exile in their mansion Havilland Hall in Guernsey, acquired by the 4th prince and his English wife, Evelyn, Princess Blücher. Later the family moved to Eurasburg, Bavaria. The present head of the House of Blücher von Wahlstatt is Nicolaus, 8th Prince Blücher of Wahlstatt (born 1932), the heir apparent is his son, hereditary count Lukas (born 1956). [21]

Legacy

Blucher monument in front of the University of Rostock's main building, created by Johann Gottfried Schadow in collaboration with Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Rostock Blucher Denkmal.jpg
Blücher monument in front of the University of Rostock's main building, created by Johann Gottfried Schadow in collaboration with Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

After his death, statues were erected to his memory at Berlin, Breslau, Rostock, and Kaub (where his troops crossed the Rhine in pursuit of Napoleon's forces in 1813).

In gratitude for his service, George Stephenson, the pioneering British locomotive engineer, named a locomotive after him, and Oxford University granted him an honorary doctorate (doctor of laws), about which he is supposed to have joked that if he was made a doctor, they should at least make Gneisenau an apothecary.

The Blucher was named after him, after the original ship was captured by the British and the new owners named it for him.

Three ships of the German navy have been named in honour of Blücher. The first to be so named was the corvette SMS Blücher, built at Kiel's Norddeutsche Schiffbau AG (later renamed the Krupp-Germaniawerft ) and launched 20 March 1877. Taken out of service after a boiler explosion in 1907, she ended her days as a coal freighter in Vigo, Spain.

On 11 April 1908, the Panzerkreuzer SMS Blücher was launched from the Imperial Shipyard in Kiel. This ship was sunk on 24 January 1915 in the First World War at the Battle of Dogger Bank.

The Second World War German heavy cruiser Blücher was completed in September 1939, and pronounced ready for service on 5 April 1940 after completing a series of sea trials and training exercises. The vessel was sunk four days later near Oslo during the invasion of Norway.

He was played by German actor Otto Gebühr in the 1929 film Waterloo . In 1932, he was the subject of the biographical film Marshal Forwards , in which he was played by Paul Wegener. It was part of a group of Prussian films released during the era.

When Krieblowitz was conquered by the Red Army in 1945, Soviet soldiers broke into the Blücher mausoleum and scattered the remains — despite the fact that Blücher had been instrumental in the final defeat of Napoleon, the would-be conqueror of Russia. Soviet troops reportedly used his skull as a football. After 1989, some of his profaned remains were taken by a Polish priest and interred in the catacomb of the church in Sośnica (German: Schosnitz), 3 km from the now Polish Krobielowice. [22]

He was portrayed by Soviet actor Sergo Zakariadze, in the 1970 Soviet-Italian film Waterloo .

Blücher is honoured with a bust in the Walhalla temple near Regensburg.

Blücher also has a boarding house named after him at Berkshire based Wellington College. The Blucher, as it is known, is a boys' house renowned for sporting and academic prowess.

A popular German idiom, ran wie Blücher ("charge like Blücher"), meaning that someone is taking very direct and aggressive action, in war or otherwise, refers to Blücher.[ citation needed ]

Vasily Blyukher's last name was given to his family by a landlord in honor of Gebhard.

Near Twickenham Stadium is the Prince Blucher pub.

See also

Notes

  1. In German personal names, von is a preposition which approximately means of or from and usually denotes some sort of nobility. While von (always lower case) is part of the family name or territorial designation, not a first or middle name, if the noble is referred to by surname alone in English, use Schiller or Clausewitz or Goethe , not von Schiller, etc.
  2. Regarding personal names: Fürst is a title, translated as 'Prince', not a first or middle name. The feminine form is Fürstin.
  3. Age of fourteen according to Chisholm 1911, p. 80.
  4. a life peerage meaning Prince of the Battlefield – after Wahlstatt monastery at Legnickie Pole, the site of the decisive Battle of Legnica (or Battle of Liegnitz; Legnickie Pole is the name created in 1948 for Wahlstatt or 'battlefield', a posthumous name more popular only from the 18th century: to avoid mix-up with the 1760 battle of Liegnitz on 9 April 1241 where the Mongols of the Golden Horde had defeated a Polish-German army but then retreated to the Mongol Empire, instead of invading the remainder of Europe all the way to the Atlantic Ocean.[ citation needed ]

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References

  1. Leggiere 2014, p. xi.
  2. Swedish Encyclopedia "Nordisk Familjebok", vol 4, article "Breslau", column 112, see ; Swedish "Andra öppna plater äro Blücherplatz med Blüchers staty,..."(found left of "Brescia" in column 111); means "Other open places are Blücherplatz with Blüchers' statue,..."
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 Chisholm 1911, p. 80.
  4. Polier 2016 [ unreliable source ][ better source needed ]
  5. Leggiere 2014, p. 6.
  6. Leggiere 2014, p. 11.
  7. Leggiere 2014, p. 108.
  8. Leggiere 2014, pp. 108–109.
  9. Leggiere 2014, p. 110.
  10. Leggiere 2014, p. 111.
  11. Montefiore 2016, p. 313.
  12. Lieven 2010, pp.  537–538?.
  13. Stanhope 1888, p. 119.
  14. Cornwell 2015, Chapter 6, p. 93–94?.
  15. Barbero 2006, p. [ page needed ].
  16. Cornwell 2015, Chapter 6, p. 94?.
  17. He was 72, based on his birth date.
  18. Cornwell 2015, Chapter 9, p. 158?.
  19. Cornwell 2015, Afterword p. 239?.
  20. Compare: Wikisource-logo.svg Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Blücher, Gebhard Leberecht von". Encyclopædia Britannica . 4 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 90.: "He retained to the end of his life that wildness of character and proneness to excesses which had caused his dismissal from the army in his youth, but however they may be regarded, these faults sprang always from the ardent and vivid temperament which made Blücher a dashing leader of horse."
  21. Vítejte 2012 [ unreliable source ][ better source needed ]
  22. Leggiere 2014, pp.  448449.

Sources

Attribution

Further reading