Kutuzov, Mikhail Ilarionovich
Kutuzov, Mikhail Ilarionovich(mēkhəyēl` ēləryôn`əvĭch ko͝oto͞o`zəf), 1745–1813, Russian field marshal. He fought against the Polish Confederation of Bar (see Bar, Confederation ofBar, Confederation of,
union formed in 1768 at Bar, in Podolia (now in W Ukraine), by a number of Polish nobles to oppose the interference of Catherine II of Russia in Polish affairs.
..... Click the link for more information. ) and served in the Russo-Turkish WarsRusso-Turkish Wars.
The great eastward expansion of Russia in the 16th and 17th cent., during the decline of the Ottoman Empire, nevertheless left the shores of the Black Sea in the hands of the Ottoman sultans and their vassals, the khans of Crimea.
..... Click the link for more information. of 1768–74 and 1787–92, in which he lost an eye. He took part (1805) in the battle of Austerlitz, which was fought against his advice. In 1811–12 he again took command against the Ottomans and defeated them in a brilliant campaign that brought Bessarabia to Russia. In Aug., 1812, Kutuzov replaced Barclay de TollyBarclay de Tolly, Mikhail, Prince
, 1761–1818, Russian field marshal, of Scottish descent. He gained prominence in the Napoleonic Wars, became minister of war in 1810, and commanded the Russian forces against Napoleon in 1812.
..... Click the link for more information. as commander in chief against the invading armies of Napoleon INapoleon I
, 1769–1821, emperor of the French, b. Ajaccio, Corsica, known as "the Little Corporal." Early Life
The son of Carlo and Letizia Bonaparte (or Buonaparte; see under Bonaparte, family), young Napoleon was sent (1779) to French military schools at
..... Click the link for more information. . Kutuzov was expected to engage the French in battle and to abandon his predecessor's delaying tactics. The battle of BorodinoBorodino
, village, central European Russia, c.70 mi (110 km) W of Moscow. It was the site, on Sept. 7, 1812, of a battle between Napoleon's Grande Armée and Gen. Mikhail Kutuzov's Russian forces defending Moscow.
..... Click the link for more information. was the result; after that butchery, Kutuzov resumed Barclay's wise policy of retreat, which eventually led to Napoleon's ruin. He pursued Napoleon relentlessly after the retreat of the Grande Armée from Moscow (1812–13). He was created prince of Smolensk for a victory there late in 1812.