Samsonov, Aleksandr Vasilyevich

Samsonov, Aleksandr Vasilyevich

(əlyĭksän`dər vəsē`lyəvĭch səmsô`nəf), 1859–1914, Russian general. Early in World War I, when his army advanced into East Prussia (see MasuriaMasuria
, Ger. Masurenland, Pol. Mazury, region, N Poland. It is a low-lying area covered by large lakes and forests and drained by many small rivers. The original population of the region was expelled by the Teutonic Knights and replaced (14th cent.
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) in order to relieve German pressure on the French, it was virtually annihilated by German field marshal Hindenburg in the battle of TannenbergTannenberg
, Pol. Stębark, village, Warmińsko-Mazurskie prov., NE Poland, near Olsztyn. Formerly in East Prussia, it was transferred (1945) by the Potsdam Conference to Polish administration. Two important battles were fought there.
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 (Aug., 1914). His defeat was partly caused by the failure of General Rennenkampf to bring his forces to Samsonov's aid. Samsonov shot himself on the battlefield.

Bibliography

See A. Solzhenitsyn, August 1914 (1972).

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