Battle of Moscow 1612 – Stalingrad XVII century. Who was kicked out of the Kremlin?

410 years ago, on 1 September 1612 , at 1 o'clock in the afternoon Grand Hetman of Lithuania Jan Karol Chodkiewicz attacked the field fortifications of Prince Dmitry Pozharsky near the White City of Moscow in the area of ​​Prechistensky and Arbat Gates.

Thus began what is called the Battle of Moscow, and sometimes the Battle of Maiden — — simply because Khodkevich crossed the river near the Novodevichy Convent, which is located precisely in this historical area of ​​Moscow. Although with the same success, this three-day battle could be called the “Battle of the Ordynka” or even "Battle at Balchug" — the pressure of the Polish-Lithuanian army was so strong that some of its units managed to break through and gain a foothold on these lines.

Temporarily — for a matter of hours. Already in the evening of September 3, they were kicked out of there. The next day, the remnants of Khodkevich's troops left in the direction of Mozhaisk, and then to the very border and and beyond. These remnants retreated in relative order. But still with shame — they did not fulfill their main task. Their compatriots, the Polish-Lithuanian occupiers, who had dug in in Kitai-Gorod and Kremlin since 1610 , and were left without bread and butter, without corned beef and wine that Khodkevich brought them. In a couple of months, these starving inmates capitulate. Enemy banners will fall on the land of Moscow near the Kremlin walls — not for the last time. It is that day that we and celebrate now as National Unity Day.

Although, in conscience, the Battle of Moscow could also be recognized as a day of military glory and an event that marked a new hope in our history. A battle in which the people's militia managed to wrest victory from superior forces of a professional, skillful and extremely cruel enemy. which, by the way, says the source “from” the other side. In the 17th century, intellectuals could still make their way to power. One of such large Polish statesman and historian Stanisław Kobierzycki, puts accents as far as possible impartially and competently. Here are the moods he captures in Poland before the Battle of Moscow: “Government officials cared little for” the Russians, despising the enemy, defeated so many times. The victories in Muscovy produced such joy in Poland that it seemed to cloud the thoughts and interfere with the mind of the king and nobles. Confidence in  undoubted victory led to  so delighted that many were already talking about the transformation of Muscovy into Polish province». And this is what happened after it: “We” suffered such a significant loss that it could no longer be rewarded with anything. The wheel of fortune has turned. The hope of taking possession of the whole Muscovite state collapsed irrevocably».

Speaking frankly, “the other side” there was every reason to despise Russian power. What enemy did Khodkevich's troops see in front of them? First of all, the remnants of the First Militia, repeatedly beaten by the hetman and  brought to  a truly miserable state: "in uniform srachits (undershirts) and  without pants, only a single squeaker and a powder flask in their possessions". The personnel of the Second Militia brought to Moscow by the Pozharsky and Minin, looked almost as unpresentable. The best forces of the Russian kingdom, the nobles and archers of the central regions, were ground in the bloody meat grinder of wars and civil strife of the last eight years. The poor provincial nobility and  townsmen, that is the peasant — that's what Pozharsky had. It is not surprising that Polish Colonel Jozef Budilo, who was sitting in the Kremlin, to whom Khodkevich was going to help, arrogantly wrote to the Russian commander: “Better you, Pozharsky, let your people go to the plows.”

Jan Karol Chodkiewicz.

Khodkevich never descended to such hairpins. He was firmly convinced of his victory. Still would — a successful commander with a European name, who studied the art of tactics in Italy and with knights of the Order of Malta, who beat the Swedish troops, three times his number… Yes and the task that confronted him was familiar, if not  ; say routine. The Polish-Lithuanian army has already three times (!) Delivered convoys with provisions to the besieged Kremlin — once in 1611 and twice in 1612 and with less forces. And now, 12,000 people have gathered under the banner of Khodkevich. people, yes & nbsp; somewhere else 3 & nbsp; thousand. of the Polish-Lithuanian army is sitting in the Kremlin, and at any moment it can hit the “Russian peasants from” the plow in back. And there were barely 10 thousand men.

Ukrainian trace

Formulas “Polish-Lithuanian army” and "Polish-Lithuanian occupation of Moscow" so firmly rooted in our tradition that we do consider these invaders other than Poles . Although, in reality, every time, starting from  1604 g., the invasion forces of the Commonwealth consisted mostly of  those who were then called "Cherkasy", and and and"Ukrainian Cossacks". That same Khodkevich has “Ukrainian Cossacks” in general were the basis of the army — There were more than 8 thousand of them. During the times of political correctness in the Soviet way, this topic was delicately bypassed. However, since the collapse of the USSR, Ukrainian historians seem to have found in another reason for national pride: “In campaigns on Moscow territory in the early 17th  almost the entire gentry of Ukraine-Rus» was involved.

So it is. But there is nothing to be proud of here. And "gentry", and "Ukrainian Cossacks" established themselves as the most notorious rapists, bandits, robbers and murderers, through the efforts of which, during the Time of Troubles, up to & nbsp; 80% of the arable lands of the Russian kingdom fell into desolation. Russian people were deliberately destroyed. A small episode: one such ataman, Mikhail Baloven, amused himself by “filling the peasants with gunpowder and” in “the” mouth, and “in” the ears and “set fire” to. There are more than 6 thousands of ruined souls on his conscience. And there were no number of such chieftains. Others managed to break through to the very White Sea, where they robbed and burned monasteries and villages — only on Onega subsequently found about 2.5 thousand. tortured to death women, old people and children.

Cannibalism and rage

The same "Ukrainian people" sat with their Polish masters and in the besieged Kremlin, waiting for Khodkevich's breakthrough with food convoys. We sat in terrible hunger. And actively hunted food, not disdaining anything. Kyiv merchant Bogdan Balyka, who followed his compatriots in the hope of profiting from the robbers, left memories of this. This is what he witnessed: «Zholner Voronets and Cossack Shcherbina, falling into the house of Prince Fyodor Ivanovich Mstislavsky, began to sharpen in search of living creatures. Mstislavsky began to mention them (to reproach, scold), and  customers hit him with a whole (brick) in the head, little did died». And if the prince did die, the fate of his remains, according to the words of the same Bogdan Balyka, would be bad: they bought a human head for 3 gold, for a human leg, without meat, only bones, gave 2 gold. Pan Zhukovskyfor the fourth part of a man's stegn (buttocks) he gave 5 gold…»

In a word, the enemy who opposed the Russian militia of Minin and Pozharsky was not only skillful and extremely cruel — he was driven to despair. And and to the same outnumbered the militias. The three days of the Moscow battle became what the chronicler would call it: “The battle is great and  the slash is evil.” At first, Khodkevich prevailed — he managed not only to break into Zamoskvorechye, but and to bring there all 400 convoys with food. The Kremlin was about 1800 meters away. And here prince Pozharsky was enlightened. Realizing that the Russian militia is obviously losing in a direct clash of cavalrymen, he makes a non-trivial decision — to bet on what will later be called the classic “urban battle”. When lead is flying at the broken enemy from under every doorway, when in the crooked Moscow alleys the Russian infantry, known for its stamina, “takes” the enemy into  axes,  knives and even hand-to-hand combat, finishing off those who broke through with "stones and broken bricks". When they no longer cling to field fortifications, but furnaces, ruins, heaps of rubbish. When they strike from all sides and attack from completely unpredictable places: from the pits and and sprinkling with a vice to the encampments of Khotkevich»… the army, on 2/3 consisting of “Ukrainian people”, staged a kind of Stalingrad.

Boris Chorikov, “Grand Duke Dmitry Pozharsky liberates Moscow”

Pozharsky's tactics, multiplied by the frenzy and rage of the militias, did their job. The invaders were simply cut out. The Russians got not only the entire convoy, but also camping tents «with all the wealth» — Khodkevich didn't manage to take them off. It was a rout. The retreating ones were not even pursued — why? Firstly, they themselves blew away from Moscow with enviable speed. And  secondly, there are too few of those who wanted to subdue the “whole Muscovite state” under them.

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