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Biography

Knight Valerian Grigor Madatoff (Meharb’s Rostom) was General-Lieutenant, hero of the Patriotic War and Yermolov’s outstanding military associate in Caucasus. Madatoff was born in 1782, in Karabakh, in the village Avetaranots (Chanakhchi) nearby Shushi. He was from a rather famous Armenian family. In 1799 he entered as port-praporshchik in the Life Guards of Preobrazhensky Regiment, in 1802 he was moved to Pavlov Grenadier Regiment as Lieutenant, in 1807 – to the Mingrelian Musketeer Regiment as staff captain and in 1808 he was promoted to the rank of captain. In the same year – in 1808, he started his glorious military career in the war against Turkey. Serving in avant-garde under Platov’s command Madatoff participated in the battles nearby Brailov, Machin, Babadag, Girsovo, Kyustenji, Rassevat (Golden Sword), Kalapetro and Kapakla. Brilliant courage and outstanding qualities of skilful cavalry officer displayed during all mentioned battles brought up his move to the Alexandrian Hussars Regiment as Rittmeister ("riding master" or "cavalry master")in 1810. In the ranks of that regiment Madatoff excellently fought nearby Tataritsa and was elevated to the rank of Major. In the battle nearby the village Chaushkino he was awarded St. George (white) cross. Together with his squadron, only he pierced into numerous Turkish column, scattered it and seized the cannon (Order of St. George Forth class) in the battle of Batinsk. For the battle during which Madatoff together two hundred soldiers scattered the Turkish column, he was elevated to the rank of lieutenant colonel.

Participation in wars

Participation in campaigns:  During the Russo-Turkish War of 1808-1811 Madatoff was distinguished in Moldavia and Wallachia in the battles nearby the villages Brailov, Machin, Girsovo (1809), during the siege of the town Kyustenji (1809), nearby Botin he defeated the detachment of Turkish cavalry consisting of 4000 soldiers (1810). Madatoff participated in the Patriotic War and in foreign campaigns in 1812-1814. On June 15, 1812, nearby Kobrin at the head of his regiment Madatoff defeated the detachment of Saxon cavalry. Madatoff was distinguished nearby Lützen, Leipzig, Dresden, in 1813 he was wounded, in 1814 he entered Paris. In 1816-1828 he participated in the battles against the mountaineers in the North Caucasus, in 1826-1828 he participated in the Russo-Turkish War.

Award List

Golden gun “For Bravery,” January 8, 1808.
Order of St. Anna Third class, September 26, 1809.
Order of St. Vladimir Forth class, October 18, 1809.
Order of St. Anna Second class with brilliants, September 1, 1810.
Order of St. George Forth class, April 11, 1811.
Golden sword ''For Bravery” with diamond ornaments, November 2, 1812.
Order of St. George Third class, February 22, 1813.
Order of St. Anna Second class, August 23, 1813.
Order of St. Vladimir Third class, September 15, 1813.
Order of St. Anna First class, October 31, 1819.
Diamond sign of Order of St. Anna First class, February 20, 1820.
Order of St. Vladimir Second class, August 19, 1820.
Golden sword ''For bravery,” October 19, 1826.
Monarchic gratitude, July 12, 1828.
Order of St. Alexander Nevsky, July 9, 1829.
Order of Friedrich, King of Prussia, for military advantages, May 13, 1814.



Patriotic War

From the beginning of the Patriotic War Madatoff entered the Third Western Army and commanding vanguard detachment in the avant-garde of General K. O. Lambert on July 11 Madatoff forced the enemy out of Ustilug, on July 12 he occupied Grubeshov, on July 13 – Brest-Litovsk, on July 15 He overdrew the Saxons, on July 17 he bet off Austrian cavalry (rank of Colonel). On September 12 he drove the enemy from Turisk and pursued up to Brest, Chernishev and Duchy of Warsaw for destruction of enemy’s shops and stocks, on November 3 he participated in the defeat of the detachment of the Polish General Kosetski nearby Kaydanov, on November 4 he defeated the enemy nearby Molodcheno, and on November 9-12 he fought on the banks of the river Beryozina nearby Borisov, from where he was sent to Vilna and on his way on November 18 he defeated the enemy’s detachment nearby Pleshchenitsa and captured all baggage, two generals, 25 officers and 400 soldiers of lower ranks (Order of St. Vladimir Third class).

Once before the battle, the enemy opened artillery fire in the direction of the Russians’ military positions. Madatoff’s adjutant said to the General: “They noticed you. Please, hide.” It is good that they have noticed me. It means soon they will run away,” answered the General.

General in Karabakh

Making up the avant-garde of Vintsegerod’s corps Madatoff passed to Saxonia, participated in the occupation of Dresden, in the battles nearby Lützen (Golden Sword ''For bravery” with diamond ornaments), Bautzen, nearby Leipzig he was wounded by a bullet in the left arm but remained in service (rank of Major General) and moving after the battle to Halle for treatment of the wound, Madatoff returned to the army only for the seizure of Paris. In 1816 on Yermolov’s presentation Madatoff was appointed in the Caucasian department where he undertook commandment of the troops in Karabakh khanate, and in 1817 he was appointed in the district as the head of Shaki (also spelled as Sheki, Shekin or Shakki), Shirvan and KŠ°rabakhkhanates. Knowledge of mountain customs and languages, noble character, uprightness and honesty soon attracted the local population’s hearts, and taking advantage of his personal charm Madatoff was the first to organize among the local population armed groups for joint actions with the Russian troops.

Heroic death

Madatoff’s life, full of marvellous feats, should be concluded with unexpected triumph and solemnity. A. C. Khomyakov, General’s Adjutant, and I. M Bakunin write: “Turks Rashid and Hussein, who reviewed Madatoff as a dangerous enemy, opened the gates of impregnable Shumla as a sign of extraordinary respect to the hero’s remains. All officers of the Third Infantry Corps alternately carried the hero’s remains from the camp to the church. Nearby the gates of Shumla funeral procession stopped, singing of church songs was heard, the troops bowed before him banners and weapons, volleys of artillery gave the last earthly honor to his remains, the gates were opened and the procession entered the town. From the entire escort, Turks allowed to enter only Prince’s Platoon of Hussars of Oransk Regiment and their trumpeters. Unusual for Turks scene of solemn Christian burial and appearing of the Russian troops in Shumla, where never before an armed enemy had entered, attracted and amazed the local population. Crowds of people came, Turkish soldiers hurried to look at the person who was so terrible for them. Windows, roofs and fences of houses were studded by women who, having forgotten about both strict customs of their country and the hatred the Russians, wished to watch that touching and at the same time majestic event. Absolute silence was rarely broken by the sad sounds of trumpets. Burial procession slowly moved along the streets of Shumla, with great difficulty reached the fence of the Christian Church of St. George the Captain, where the remains of the brave General were buried.” Madatoff’s remains first were buried in the orthodox church of Shumla and later with the permission of the Supreme structures were moved to Russia and presently rest in Alexander Nevsky monastery in St. Petersburg.

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