MI Platov, ataman: biography, descendants, Cossacks ataman Platov Matvey Ivanovich

One of the most interesting figures of the Patriotic War of 1812 is Matvey Platov, the ataman of the troops of the Don Cossacks. He was a very interesting and interesting person. In addition to the Patriotic War, in many other battles participated ataman Platov. The biography of this man will be the subject of our discussion.


The future ataman Matvey Ivanovich Platov was born in August 1751 in Cherkassk, which at that time was the capital of the Don Army. His father, Ivan Fedorovich, belonged to the estate of the Cossack sergeant, and his mother, Anna Illarionovna (born in 1733), was a true companion to her husband's life.

In addition to Matvey, the family had three children, all male: Andrew, Stefan and Peter.

In what future activity the future chieftain M. Platov chooses, there were no doubts. Certainly, the Cossack's son could only be a Cossack.

At the age of fifteen, Matvei joined the Chancellery of the Don Army, while having the rank of a sergeant. Three years later he received the next rank - the captain.

Even then, Platov proved himself to be a person who was responsible for any business.

On the battlefields

The future ataman Matvey Platov took part in the Russo-Turkish War of 1768-1774. In 1771, he participated in the attack on the Perekop line and Kinburn, where he distinguished himself well. A year later he was already entrusted with the command of the regiment of the Don Army. In 1774 Matvei Ivanovich went to the Caucasian front, where he participated in suppressing the uprising of the mountaineers in the Kuban, who supported the Ottoman Empire.

After the Russo-Turkish War in 1775, M. Platov took part in suppressing the revolt of Pugachev. In the subsequent period he returned to the North Caucasus, where in the years 1782-1784 he fought with rebelling Lezgins, Nogays and Chechens.

In the next Russian-Turkish war (1787-1791 gg.) Platov also took the most active activity. With his participation, there were storms of fortresses such as Ochakov (1788), Ackerman (1789), Bender (1789), Izmail (1790). In 1789 he also fought in the ranks of the Russian army in the battle near Kaushan.

His feats on the military fields did not go unnoticed. Since 1790 Platov - ataman of Chuguev and Ekaterinoslav Regiments, and in 1793 received the rank of Major-General.

In 1796 Matvei Ivanovich took part in a Persian campaign, which, however, was soon canceled.


MI Platov was not the only one who knew joy. Ataman was suspected by the Emperor Paul in conspiracy against him and exiled to Kostroma. It happened in 1797. After a while he was transferred to the Peter and Paul Fortress, which meant an even greater aggravation of guilt.

Opala Platov lasted until 1801, when Paul decided to release him from imprisonment so that the ataman took part in the outlined Indian campaign. However, the adventure of this plan, as well as the death of the emperor, did not allow the plan to materialize.

At the head of the Troops of Don

The son of Paul Alexander I, who after the death of his father became the Russian emperor, patronized Matvey Ivanovich. Since 1801, Platov - ataman of the Don Army. This meant that from that moment he became the leader of the entire Don Cossacks. In addition, Matvei Ivanovich was promoted to Lieutenant-General.

The new post provided for an even greater level of responsibility to the emperor and the state. Of course, the burden of responsibility could break any person, but Platov was not that person. Ataman reorganized the Don Army, the structure of which until then was very unorganized. In addition, in 1805 Platov founded the new capital of the Don Cossacks - Novocherkassk.

The war against Napoleon

Cossacks ataman Platov, led by his commander, took part in the war of the Fourth Coalition against Napoleon. The fighting took place mainly in the territory of the Kingdom of Prussia.

Platov personally commanded his detachment in the Battle of Preussisch-Eylau, after which he gained world fame. His Cossacks acted atypically for the battles of that period, which largely puzzled the enemy. They used guerrilla tactics of war, making quick raids on the enemy's flanks and causing him considerable damage.

After the signing of the Tilsit peace treaty between Russia and France in 1807, Napoleon personally noted the merits of Platov. He handed him a valuable snuffbox. Also, the Order of the Legion of Honor was to be awarded Platov. Ataman refused such honor, arguing that it can not serve a foreign sovereign.

One of the significant companies of that period should be called the Russian-Turkish war of 1806-1812, in which the Cossack detachment of Platov also acted successfully. At the same time he received a new rank - a general from the cavalry.

Patriotic War

But the greatest trace in the biography of Platov left the Patriotic War of 1812 with Napoleon.

At the beginning of the Napoleonic invasion Platov directly commanded all the Cossack troops, but then the situation compelled him to lead separate detachments. Just as in the previous campaign against Napoleon, the actions of the Cossacks of Platov, because of their suddenness, brought many problems to the enemy. It was the detachments of Platov who succeeded in capturing the French colonel, as well as seizing the important papers of General Sebastiani.

The first successful battle against the Napoleonic forces Platov spent in June under the village of Mir, where he defeated a detachment of General Rozhnetsky. After the battle of Saltykovka, the Cossacks shielded the departure of General Bagration, and after the Battle of Smolensk, Platov assumed command of the entire rear guard of Russian troops, who continued to retreat.

But soon the situation changed. In August, on the petition before the emperor of the commander-in-chief of Barclay de Toli, Platov was expelled from the army. According to the official papers, "for inadvertence." But, according to authoritative sources, the main reason for the removal of Platov was his increased craving for alcohol.

However, Platov soon returned and participated in the battle of Borodino, as well as in the council in Fili. And at this meeting he spoke out against retreat from Moscow.

When the army of Napoleon began to leave Russia, it was Platov who led her persecution. As the leadership believed, its mobile units could inflict maximum damage to the enemy.

Foreign trip and the image of Cossacks in European culture

Platov's detachments, by that time for the merit of having received the title of Count, were among the first to cross the borders of the Russian Empire from the Neman and began to pursue the army of Napoleon already outside the country. They began the siege of Danzig, in which General McDonald sat.

After Ataman M. Platov was mainly at the Emperor's Headquarters, although the Cossack detachments continued to act as effectively in pursuit of the enemy. Sometimes Matvei Ivanovich was instructed to command separate units. In particular, he led the unit in the battle of Leipzig, which became known as the Battle of Peoples.

Cossack detachments passed through Europe, to France itself, where Napoleon signed the surrender. Cossacks Platov his appearance, as well as a lower level of discipline than the regular army, horrified not only the enemy troops, but also ordinary Europeans. After this campaign, the image of the Russian Cossack became archetypal in European culture.

Death ataman

Matvei Platov died in January 1818, in a village near Taganrog, in his native Don land, at the age of 66. So it did not become one of the most active personalities in the history of the Don Cossacks.

Buried Platov originally in Novocherkassk, but then followed a series of reburial. The grave of the ataman was desecrated by the Bolsheviks. In the end, in 1993, the remains of Matvey Platov were buried in the same place.

Family and descendants

Matvey Platov was twice married. The first marriage he combined with Nadezhda Stepanovna Efremova, who was the granddaughter of the Ataman of the Don Army. In this marriage in 1777, Ivan's son was born, who, however, died as far back as 1806, long before his father's death. Soon after the birth of his son, in 1783, Nadezhda Stepanovna died.

The second marriage of Platov was combined with Marfa Dmitrievna Martynova, for whom this was also the second marriage. She also came from the Cossack family of the elders. They had two sons (Matvei and Ivan) and four daughters (Martha, Anna, Maria, Alexandra).

Marfa Dmitrievna died at the end of 1812. After this M. Platov lived a civil marriage with the subject of the British King Elizabeth.

The descendants of Ataman Platov through his sons Matvey and Ivan have a count's dignity.

Ataman Characteristics

Ataman Platov was a rather interesting person, who gave a lot of service to the Motherland. His heroism, of course, is an example for descendants. It is also difficult to overestimate the contribution of Matvey Ivanovich to the formation of a truly powerful fighting force from the irregular Don Cossacks, which brings terror to the enemy.

Of course, like any man, the legendary ataman had his own shortcomings. To them, for example, can be considered excessive addiction to alcohol. But nevertheless, its positive qualities largely prevailed over the vices.

As we see, one of the most notable figures of his time is the Ataman Platov. His photo, unfortunately, is not available, because at the beginning of the XIX century the art of photography was not yet known to the world. Nevertheless, there is a rather large number of portraits, executed by talented artists, who give us the opportunity to contemplate the image of the great ataman.

One of these works is the posthumous portrait of Platov performed by the famous English artist of that time George Doe. This picture is located above. Judging by the external features of the person sealed on it, Ataman Platov was a resolute and strong-willed personality. Thanks to such works, we can see what were the greatest historical figures of the past centuries.

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