(MILITARY)

O pereformirovanii voysk Otdel'nogo Kavkazskogo korpusa.

[On the Reorganization of the Troops of the Separate Caucasus Corps.]

St Petersburg: The Military Press, 1834 Stock Code: 135947
£4,000.00

FROM THE LIBRARY OF TSAR NICHOLAS I

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Notes

First and only edition. Extremely uncommon, no other copy traced. This copy identified, by the gilt-stamped supralibros and pencilled press-marks, as having come from Nicholas I's English-style Cottage Palace and home farm estate Aleksandriya. To the east of the main park of the Peterhof, this area of landscaped parkland and it's complex of intimate "family" architecture was created, and named, for Nicholas's wife Alexandra Fedorovna who found the pomp and protocol of court life oppressive, and was to become the permanent summer residence for the Tsar's family.

A volume that collects texts offering valuable insight into Russian Imperial military policy during one of the bloodiest periods of the Caucasus War (1817-1864).

Text comprises of 3 sections: an official order of the Tsar Nicholas I; a table of the regiments and line battalions of the Separate Caucasus Corps signed by the Minister of War, Graf Alexander Chernyshyov; and staff reports over the signatures of either Chernyshyov or the adjutant general, Pyotr Kleinmichel. The Tsar's order to reorganise the troops of the Separate Caucasus Corps came as a direct response to Imam Shamil's successes during 1834 in the fight to unify of the Chechen and Dagestan people under the Imamater. Addressed to Graf Alexander Chernyshyov (1786-1857), the Tsar's order commands that the Separate Caucasus Corps is to absorb the Reserve Grenadier Brigade, 2 infantry divisions (the 20th and 21st) and the line battalions: 16 Georgian, 10 Black Sea and 11 Caucasus. It also features a list of the Georgian, Caucasus and Black Sea battalions with information on their allocation and supervision. Aside from the organisational details, the order elaborates upon such practical matters as the uniforms for each line battalion, officers' salaries, etc. The second part sets out the new structure of the corps, divisions, regiments and line battalions in 6 tables. The third and final section reprints 5 official reports covering troop numbers in the region, peace and war establishments; the number of carriages and horses in the regiments of the Corps; and the total of personnel in the invalid company of the Nizhegorodsky Dragoon regiment, and the Elisabethpol Invalid Company.

The annexation of the Kingdom of Kartli-Kakheti by the Russia in 1800 was soon followed by the conquest of the North Caucasus. However, the Tsar's desire to subjugate the rest of the region met fierce resistance from the people of Dagestan, Chechnya, and Adygea. The Caucasian War started in 1817, when General Yermolov - the commander-in-chief of the Russian troops in the Caucasus in 1816-1827 - implemented his subjugation plan, probing regularly into the mountain areas. In 1828, a year after Yermolov's replacement by the General Ivan Paskevich, Ghazi-Mohammed, an Avar national from Gimry, united the mountaineers of Chechnya and Dagestan under the rule of the military-theocratic Muslim state, the Imamate, and waged war against the Russians. The jihad was intended to liberate the mountaineers, and create a Kingdom of God all across the Caucasus. Having conquered Avaria, Derbent, and Kizlar, Ghazi-Mohammed was killed at the Russian siege of the Akhulgo in 1832. It was only under the leadership of the third imam, Shamil, that the "holy war" developed sufficient impetus to become a major concern for the Russians. By 1834 Shamil had formally established the Imamate in 1834, the first and only Caucasian state with a fully functioning central administration and bureaucracy, regional structure, and standing army. At its height Shamil's state had a population of nearly a million and extended through the territory of the Avars, across almost the entirety of mountainous Dagestan, Chechnya, along with part of Ingushetia and the Kumitzi Steppes, and even to the southern, Georgian side of the Khevsuretia and Tushetia Mountains. Fairly swiftly the forces of Imamate managed to arrest the Russian advance, and to liberate some of the territory captured. In spite of Shamil's alignment with the Ottoman Empire during the Crimean War, the outnumbered and outgunned rebels began losing the battle for the highlands by the late 1850s. After twenty-five years of guerilla warfare the Murid movement was brought to an end when Imam Shamil was captured during a Russian military operation in 1859. The insurrection that spanned the administrations of three successive Russian Tsars - Alexander I, Nicholas I, Alexander II - was finally declared over when Alexander II declared hostilities at an end on June 2, 1864.

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Description

Octavo (198 x 130 mm). Dark green morocco-textured sheep, concentric gilt panels with elaborate cornerpieces to both boards, the front with large Imperial eagle centre tool, the lower with floral tool in blind, edges with zig-zag edge-roll at the corners, all edges gilt, floral roll to the turn-ins.

Illustrations

Tables to the text.

Condition

Neatly rebacked with the original spine laid down, lightly rubbed else, endpapers browned, some spotting and light staining to the text, indistinct old library stamp to the corner of one leaf, overall very good.

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