Vorontsov, Mikhail Semenovich
VORONTSOV, MIKHAIL SEMENOVICH (1782-1856), Russian prince and field-marshal, son of the preceding, spent his childhood and youth with his father in London, where he received a brilliant education. During 1803-4 he served in the Caucasus under Tsitsianov and Gulyakov, and was nearly killed in the Zakatahko disaster (January 15, 1804). From 1805 to 1807 he served in the Napoleonic wars, and was present at the battles of Pultusk and Friedland. From 1809 to 1811 he participated in the Turkish 'War and distinguished himself in nearly every important action. He was attached to Bagration's army during the war of 1812, was seriously wounded at Borodino, sufficiently recovering, however, to rejoin the army in 1813. In 1814, at Craonne, he brilliantly withstood Napoleon in person. He was the commander of the corps of occupation in France from 1815 to 1818. On the 7th of May 1823 he was appointed governor-general of New Russia, as the southern provinces of the empire were then called, which under his administration developed marvellously. He may be said to have been the creator of Odessa and the benefactor of the Crimea. He was the first to start steamboats on the Black Sea (1828). The same year he succeeded the wounded Menshikov as commander of the forces besieging Varna, which he captured on the 28th of September. In the campaign of 1829 it was through his energetic efforts that the plague, which had broken out in Turkey, did not penetrate into Russia. In 1844 Vorontsov was appointed commanderin-chief and governor of the Caucasus with plenipotentiary powers. For his brilliant campaign against Shamyl, and especially for his difficult march through the dangerous forests of Ichkerinia, he was raised to the dignity of prince, with the title of Serene Highness. By 1848 he had captured two-thirds of Daghestan, and the situation of the Russians in the Caucasus, so long almost desperate, was steadily improving. In the beginning of 1853 Vorontsov was allowed to retire because of his increasing infirmities. He was made a field-marshal in 1856, and died the same year at Odessa. Statues have been erected to him both there and at Tiflis.
See V. V. Ogarkov, The Vorontsovs (Rus.) (Petersburg, 1892); Vorontsov Archives (Rus. and Fr.) (Moscow, 1870, etc.); M. P. Shelverbinin, Biography of Prince M. S. Vorontsov (Rus.) ( Petersburg, 1858). (R. N. B.)
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)