Michael Andreas (Michail Bogdanovich) Fst. Barclay de Tolly (1761 - 1818) MP

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Michael Andreas (Michail Bogdanovich) Fst. Barclay de Tolly's Geni Profile

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Birthplace: Joniškis, Lithuania
Death: Died in Chernyakhovsk, Province of Kaliningrad, Russia
Managed by: Peter Trefilov
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About Michael Andreas (Michail Bogdanovich) Fst. Barclay de Tolly

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.

Barclay commanded the right flank at the Battle of Borodino (7 September 1812) 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.

Barclay was re-employed in the field and took part in the campaign in Germany. After Kutuzov's death, he once again became commander-in-chief of the Russian forces at the Battle of Bautzen (21 May 1813), and in this capacity he served at Dresden (26 – 27 August 1813), Kulm (29 – 30 August 1813) and Leipzig (16 – 19 October 1813). In the latter battle he commanded a central part of the Allied forces so effectively that the tsar bestowed upon him the title of count.

Barclay took part in the invasion of France in 1814 and commanded the taking of Paris, receiving the baton of a Field Marshal in reward. In 1815 he again served as commander-in-chief of the Russian army which after the Hundred Days occupied France, and was created Prince at the close of the war. As his health grew worse, he left the military and settled down in his Jõgeveste manor (German exonym: Beckhof, Polish: Tepelshof)

Barclay de Tolly died at Insterburg (Chernyakhovsk), East Prussia, on 26 May 1818 (14 May, Old Style) on his way from his Livonian manor to Germany, where he wanted to renew his health. His and his wife Helene Auguste Eleonore von Smitten's remains were embalmed and put into the mausoleum built to a design by Apollon Shchedrin and Vasily Demut-Malinovsky in 1832 in Jõgeveste (in Helme, Estonia).

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Michael Andreas (Michail Bogdanovich) Fst. Barclay de Tolly's Timeline

1761
December 27, 1761
Joniškis, Lithuania
1791
August 22, 1791
Age 29
Tarwast(Tarvastu), Viljandimaa, Estland
1798
July 10, 1798
Age 36
1818
May 26, 1818
Age 56
Chernyakhovsk, Province of Kaliningrad, Russia
July 13, 1818
Age 56
Jõgeveste (Beckhof), Helme, Estonia