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Nadezhda Durova

( Hussar)

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Biography Nadezhda Durova
In 1808, a young man became a private in Konnopolsky Lancers, distinguished himself in battles with the French, received from the hands of Emperor George Cross for bravery in the same year he was made an officer. Subsequently, he continued his service as jealously as started. It was a matter of ordinary, but the story caused a noise in the society, has created a lot of talk and made a strong impression because of one accidentally discovered evidence: the young man turned out to be a girl. Her name was Nadezhda Durova.
This famous person was born in 1783 in the family of the officer of hussars, the owner of a single village in the county Sarapulsky Vyatka province Andrei Vasilyevich Durova. His mother, Nadezhda Ivanovna, - rare beauty - came from a family of rich landowners Ukrainian Aleksandrovich. Her parents were against this marriage. The father demanded, "... to make it out of your head chimerical idea to marry Moskal, and especially the military". Knowing that can not appease his father, the young were married secretly. But very soon the young beauty was sorry about his disobedience. Accustomed to the tender and delicate, she grieved her husband's poverty and hardship of military life.

Requests to the father for forgiveness were ignored, and her only hope was the expectation of her son, for whom his father could remove her curse. Imagine her disappointment when, instead of the handsome son of a daughter was born ugly. Girl named Nadia. Young woman all her pain and hurt suffered child. And although some time later, she still got the desired forgiveness, dislike of her daughter stayed.

Little Nadia irritated his extraordinary mother loud, and one day, unable to bear, in a fit of nervous she threw the baby from the window of the carriage. Shaken by his father after the incident, confided to his daughter minding old hussar Astakhov.

So from an early age the girl was in the custody of a man who, except for military affairs, did not know and did not know how, why and keen on her ward. He planted it on a horse, let's play with a pistol and sword, learned the command words and thus developed in her warlike propensities.
. In 1789 Andrey left military service and his entire family (after Nadia was born two daughters and a son) lived in Sarapul, which procured a position of mayor.

. Six-year Nadia lost her beloved hussar-nanny and came under the yoke of the mother, which is every day becoming more violent
. Everything seemed to her daughter's bad: the desire to walk - a criminal, love for animals - dangerous. For days, she locked her in a room, forcing to make lace, than, of course, caused Nadia aversion to this lesson and an even greater love of freedom. In the family home child feels strange. The only man who forgave her boyish pranks, he loved her and spoiled, was the father. Nadia responded with devotion and deep affection.

When she was twelve years old, his father bought almost invincible Circassian horse, leaving him, called Alcides and gave his daughter. The girl fell in love with a horse and taught him to her. Secretly mother, often at night, it displays Alcides of the stables in the field and jumped on it. Once caught red-handed, Nadia was sent to the grandmother in Little Russia. It was the fourteenth year.

Being close to nature, freedom, getting rid of constant surveillance and fear of being punished for any fault, the girl started to thaw, prettier, and forget their manners hussar. Here a young girl meets her first and probably only love.

The subject of her attention, by the way, mutual, was the son of a landowner-neighbor, who did not want to hear that her son took in his wife's dowry. "It was the first inclination, and I think that if I then gave me for him, I bade farewell to the warlike designs, but the fate destined me to battlefield battleground, had decided otherwise," - later recalled Durova.

. Soon, the parents took her grandmother
. Wanting to quickly get rid of maternal power, Hope willingly gave her consent, when she made an offer fine Sarapulsky official Chernov. After some time she gave birth to a son, Ivan. But a year later left her husband and returned to her parents' home. What was the cause is unknown. Durova, later detailing his life, said not a word about her husband and son
Thus, through the release of her marriage failed. Women's participation pictured her in the darkest colors. The causes of their misfortunes she had seen of belonging to the female sex. Reflecting, she came to the decision now to impersonate a man and go into military service in the cavalry, because no other kind of activity she had no idea.

. Of course, there have played a role, and the patriotic impulses, and family tradition, and the properties of nature
. It was in 1806. Napoleon defeated the allied Russian and Austrian troops, preparing to conquer Russia. "Militant heat with incredible strength went up in flames in my soul, - recalled Durova - I firmly decided to become a warrior, be a son to his father and for all get rid of her sex.

. September 7, 1806 Durova, . disguised as a male Cossack costume, . night with his Alcides left home and, . impersonating a nobleman, . contrary to the will of the parent who wants to enter military service, . joined the Cossack regiment, . him to reach the location of regular troops,
. It called itself Alexander Sokolov. Under this name, when you come the Cossacks to Grodno, she enlisted in Konnopolsky Lancers. Happiness flooded her: "So, I am free! Available! Regardless, I took my belonging, my freedom!"

In early May, the regiment had to march. Before that, Hope wrote a letter to his father, which tells you where it is and under what name is, begged forgiveness escape, "to give a blessing and allow to go through necessary for my happiness". Answer to a letter her daughter had been a petition filed by Andrei Vasilyevich king with a request to find her daughter and return home.

Durova by imperial order, without disclosing incognito, with a special courier brought to St. Petersburg. By its formulary list was attached report Chief Buxhowden with the best reviews of the fighting qualities Sokolova. Alexander I originally intended to take her and return to her father's house, but after the urgent request permission to remain in the army and ordered to be called by its name Alexandrov, that in itself meant a great degree of goodwill.

. The emperor also ordered to enroll her in an aristocratic Mariupol Hussars
. And knowing that Hope had saved the life of an officer on the battlefield, he personally awarded her the George Cross.

. Durova served in the Hussars three-plus years, then at her request, was transferred to the Lithuanian Lancers
. In her memoirs, she explained her action by the fact that the daughter of a colonel of the regiment fell in love with her and she did not want to put a girl in an awkward position.

. Patriotic War of 1812 Durova met with the rank of second lieutenant, but soon was in the lieutenants of Military Merit - her courage knew no bounds
. Never regretted it my choice.

. "I love the military profession from the date of my birth, . - Wrote Hope in those days, . - And I think the title of the noblest warrior of all and only, . which one can not assume any defects, . because fearlessness is the first and necessary quality of a warrior, fearlessness inseparable from the greatness of soul, . and when combining these two great virtues is no place vices or low passions. ",

. Durova was reputed as an excellent officer, which was awarded the honor to be adjutant MI
. Kutuzov, has not yet received a serious concussion in the Battle of Borodino.

Meanwhile, the Army quietly began to spread a rumor about the existence of women officers. Durova wrote:

. "Everybody is talking about, . but nobody knows anything, all consider it possible, . but no one believes, I have not once been told my own story with all the possible distortions: one describes a beauty, . another monster, . Third old woman, . fourth gave me a huge growth and brutal appearance,
. Based on these descriptions, I could be used confidently, that will never draw suspicion does not stop me, if not for one thing: I was supposed to wear mustaches, but they are not, and certainly will not be ... Often already laughing at me, saying: "Well, brother, when we expect your usovN I do not Lapp whether tyN"

In 1816, after serving a total of ten years, Durova at the request of her father retired in the rank of Lieutenant-Captain. After leaving military service, it still has not removed the military uniforms and has not relinquished the role of men, taken over many years ago. Even people who knew her from childhood, it is habit, the already in-kind, spoke on behalf of the male.

Women's manners were forgotten it all, women's dresses called her a sense of aesthetic. "I love to look at the ladies' outfits - she confessed - but not for the treasures would not put them on myself: My Uhlans tunic better!" At least he told me over to the person, and it's, say, the condition of good taste: dress-to-face.
. Several years Durova lived in Petersburg year - in the Ukraine in the family, then returned to Sarapul to his father, who occupied the post of mayor
. After his death the position passed to his son Vasily Andreyevich, translated soon for the same position in Yelabuga.

Together with his brother and moved to Hope. In Yelabuga, languishing with boredom, nothing better to do, she began going through the records that led his life, and came to the thought out of them a literary autobiography.

Durova's brother was acquainted with Pushkin and persuaded his sister to send him their works. The great poet, reading "Notes" sent by Durova, recognized for her remarkable literary talent.

It works because he liked that he even wanted to be their publisher. "For success, it seems, can vouch for it - he wrote - the fate of the author so curious, so famous and so mysterious ..."
Durova arrives in St. Petersburg. Her first encounter with Pushkin is remarkable oddity. Alexander praised her literary works, she utters a lot of compliments, leaned over and kissed her hand. Durova surprise blushed, hastily grabbed his hand and exclaimed: "Oh, my God, I long ago lost the habit of this!"

The publication of the novel "Trooper-girl. The incident in Russia, as predicted by Pushkin, galvanized the whole community. Everyone wants to get acquainted with this legendary figure. All avidly read her works: after the first book Durova wrote and published "Tales and Stories" in four volumes.

Gradually, however, spoiled secular society has begun to lose interest in Durova and her works. She finally went to Yelabuga and lives there without a break, applies to local authorities for all those who approach her for help, turns your house into a shelter for abandoned and crippled animals.

Nadezhda Durova, died April 2, 1866. She bequeathed to call themselves at the funeral Alexander Andreevich Alexandrov name, which she herself had made for himself and under which has lived all his life. But the priest did not dare to violate the rules of the church and funeral her name, given to her at baptism.
Durova was buried with military honors. Before the coffin of an officer of the local garrison was carrying on a velvet cushion her George Cross - the first and only time since the establishment of the chief of the military Order of Russia was awarded the woman.

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