Military Review

How the Russians crushed the Turkish army in the Battle of Machin

How the Russians crushed the Turkish army in the Battle of Machin

Babadag has a case

Successful actions of the Russians beyond the Danube (The defeat of the Turkish army at Machin and Brailov) alarmed the new vizier, Yusuf Pasha. Wishing to make up for the unfavorable impression made on the sultan by the loss of Machin and the defeat at Brailov, the vizier decided to concentrate large forces at Machin and give the enemy a decisive battle.

Meanwhile, the Russian command also decided to build on the first success and end the war. To this end, Gudovich's Caucasian Corps received the task of taking Anapa (How the Russians took "Caucasian Izmail"), Ushakov's Sevastopol squadron went to sea to defeat the Ottoman fleet, and Repin's main army was supposed to cross the Danube and give a general battle to the vizier.

Since it was known that the enemy was gathering forces from Machin, Repnin sent a detachment of Kutuzov to Babadag to distract the Turks. Kutuzov's troops, which were stationed in Izmail, on the night of June 3 (14), 1791, crossed the Danube at Tulcha and moved towards Babadag. On June 4 (15), Kutuzov's detachment went to Babadag. Our cavalry crushed the advance detachment of the Turkish troops. Up to 15 thousand Turks left Babadag and about 8 thousand Tatars stood in a separate detachment, threatening the right flank of Kutuzov. The general sent Black Sea Cossacks against the Tatars, who put the enemy to flight. He himself began an offensive against the Ottomans.

The Turks could not withstand the decisive attack and fled, leaving the city and camp. The Turks and Tatars lost only up to 1,5 thousand people killed. Our losses are minimal. Several banners, 8 cannons, large stocks of bread and gunpowder were captured. Having defeated the enemy at Babadag, Kutuzov returned to Izmail.

Russian offensive

Meanwhile, the Turks continued to gather troops at Machin. On June 17 (28), 1791, Repnin received news that Machin had up to 30 thousand Turks, who were constantly strengthening from Girsov. The vizier himself was going to go to Machin. The Turkish army numbered up to 80 thousand people. Also, about 50 Turkish ships were assembled at Brailov to support the troops at Machin.

To prevent the enemy's advance, Repnin decided to strike at the Ottomans himself and prevent the vizier from completing preparations for the offensive. He concentrated the entire army at Galatz and ordered Kutuzov with the Bug Jaeger Corps to also go to Galatz. The Russian army consisted of 30 thousand people and 78 guns. On the night of June 23 (July 4) on the Danube ships flotilla Danube crossed Golitsyn's detachment to the Kunzefan Peninsula. Strong winds and the fast flow of the Danube slowed down the crossing. One detachment of Golitsyn was ferried all night and day. Therefore, a bridge was erected across the Danube, from Galati to the island that lay opposite the city. For this, ferries, ships and army pontoons were used. Golitsyn's corps covered the crossing.

Reconnaissance was carried out. The enemy in great strength stood in a strong position in front of Machin. The left flank adjoined the forward city fortifications, the front was protected by steep slopes of heights, the right flank was open and was located on a flat hill. There were no roads along Kunzefan, the peninsula was completely covered with reeds. Nevertheless, Repnin decided to attack. The bridge to the island was completed in two days. At the same time, the second bridge was erected from the Kunzefan Peninsula to the island. The work was completed by June 26 (July 7).

The river was crossed by the Volkonsky corps, then the Kutuzov corps. Meanwhile, Quartermaster General Pistor with 4 infantry battalions, 2 hussars and 4 Don regiments set out on the evening of June 25 and paved a road across the peninsula, arranged river crossings. Within a day, the road to the front of the enemy position was ready, and another one was laid, parallel to the Danube, to the Chichuli river. The Turks tried to interfere with this work, but were thrown back by Orlov's Cossacks.

Since reconnaissance showed that the Turkish position was the weakest point from the right flank, Prince Repnin decided to deliver the main blow from this side, bypassing the enemy's right wing. From the front of the enemy, other troops were to be tied up. Therefore, General Pistor, having arranged a ferry to Chichuli, continued the road to the left to the river. A catcher that leaked at the foot of steep heights. It was necessary to climb to the heights in order to bypass the right flank of the Turkish army. On the river A bridge was built at Katecher. On June 27 (July 8), Repin's troops marched towards Machin. To prevent Brailov's garrison from attacking our rear, the commander ordered the Danube flotilla to go to the fortress.

Location of troops

Having made a 30-verst night march in four columns, at dawn on June 28 (July 9), 1791, Russian troops turned around and launched an offensive. On the right flank was Golitsyn's corps - 12 infantry battalions, 6 cavalry regiments (including Cossacks) with 24 guns. The corps was reinforced by the detachment of General Shpet - 2 infantry regiments, 200 Cossacks, 8 guns. Shpet's detachment was supposed to cover the rear and the right flank of Golitsyn's corps, in case enemy forces appeared from Brailov or a landing from the Machin side. Golitsyn's corps was supposed to tie up the enemy in a frontal position and, during a general attack, take Machin's fortifications.

In the center was the Volkonsky corps - 10 infantry battalions, 2 cavalry regiments and 800 cavalry Black Sea Cossacks, 16 guns. Volkonsky supported Kutuzov's attack. The decisive role was to be played by the Golenishchev-Kutuzov left-flank corps, to which Pistor's detachment was attached. The corps consisted of 4 battalions of the Bug and 2 battalions of Belarusian rangers, 4 battalions of the Siberian and 2 battalions of the Kiev grenadier regiments, 2 hussars and 2 carabinier regiments, 6 Don regiments of Brigadier Orlov and all the arnauts of Prime Major Muravyov, 24 guns.


Kutuzov's corps was the first to move in order to make a roundabout maneuver to the left. At dawn, the Turks found our troops. Therefore, Repnin hastened to cross the river. Chichuli of Golitsyn's corps to bind the enemy with the threat of a frontal attack. Forcing r. Chichul and having built troops in 5 squares (two lines), having cavalry in the rear, Golitsyn began to prepare an attack on the heights occupied by the Turks.

At this time, Volkonsky's corps had just begun the crossing, so a significant gap formed between the left and right Russian flanks. Taking advantage of this, the Turks threw a mass of cavalry at Golitsyn. The attack was strong, despite heavy artillery fire, many Turks broke through to the square. They even cut into the ranks of the Novgorod regiment, but thanks to the energy and management of Colonel Kvashnin-Samarin, order was quickly restored and all the Ottomans were killed. Golitsyn's corps threw back the enemy.

By that time, the cavalry of the Volkonsky corps approached, which began the persecution of the Ottomans. The infantry also came for the cavalry. The connection between the left and right flanks of the Russian army was established. Heavy fire was opened on enemy positions.

Meanwhile, Kutuzov's troops attacked the heights on the enemy's right flank. The 1st and 4th Jaeger Battalions, under the command of General Pistor, quickly climbed the steep slopes and struck the enemy. The Turks fled to their main position. Kutuzov's corps climbed to the heights and lined up in 5 squares (2 lines). The left flank, where a vast clearing opened up, convenient for the action of the cavalry, was covered by our cavalry. Having brought the troops in order, Kutuzov resumed the offensive.

Kutuzov, improving his position, made a maneuver to the left, became the front towards the enemy. Kare lined up in one line. He put the cavalry in the second line, on the left wing. The Turkish cavalry attacked our troops several times, but was driven back. Part of the cavalry of Volkonsky's corps rose to the heights and supported Kutuzov's troops, attacking the left flank of the enemy cavalry. The Turks, receiving new reinforcements from the main position, tried to cut off and smash Kutuzov's corps, so they continued their attacks.

However, all the efforts of the enemy were in vain. Volkonsky's corps sent grenadier regiments to reinforce Kutuzov - St. Nicholas, Kiev and Moscow. The grenadiers with strong rifle and grape-shot firing devastated the dense masses of the enemy cavalry. The Turks tried to crush Volkonsky's corps, but were thrown back by the Yekaterinoslav grenadiers.

Simultaneously, the Ottomans launched a second strong attack on Golitsyn's corps. This attack was repulsed with rifle and artillery fire. Golitsyn's troops, pursuing the enemy, moved forward. The cavalry rushed into the enemy camp. The corps of Volkonsky and Kutuzov moved forward and formed a new, common battle line.

Meanwhile, as Repnin had suggested, the Turks from Brailov landed a detachment at Kunzefan to attack our troops from the rear. Also, a landing party was being prepared on the ships to strike the flank and rear of Golitsyn's corps. Repnin decided to reinforce General Shpet's detachment. For this, a detachment of Brigadier Polivanov was allocated from the Golitsyn corps - the Apsheron and Smolensk infantry regiments, the Chernigov and Starodub carabiner regiments. The Moscow Grenadier Regiment was separated from Volkonsky's corps.

Even before the arrival of reinforcements, the enemy fired at the positions of Shpet's detachment. However, two Russian batteries drove away the enemy, 2 ships were blown up, 3 were burned, others were damaged. Turkish ships went up the Danube to land troops elsewhere. But at this time, reinforcements arrived, which destroyed two more ships.

The Ottomans retreated. At this time, a detachment from Brailov (1500 selected janissaries) attacked the position of Shpet. Noticing the approach of Russian reinforcements, the Turks turned back to board the ships. Our cavalry caught up and completely scattered the enemy detachment. Those who tried to get to the boats were hacked to death or drowned.

Mikhail Illarionovich Golenishchev-Kutuzov (1745-1813). Hood. George Doe.


While in the rear they repulsed the attack of the Ottomans, the Russian army went on a general offensive.

Golitsyn's corps captured the Machin trenches, the enemy's left flank. Volkonsky's troops captured the Turkish camp in the center, and Kutuzov crushed the enemy's right flank. The enemy in panic, throwing guns, rifles and equipment, fled to the second fortified camp at Lake Machinsky. Russian cavalry pursued the enemy.

The Turkish commander Mustafa Pasha tried to restore order and organize resistance in new positions, but the soldiers fled to Girsovo. The Russians also captured the second camp. The Supreme Vizier, who was walking with reinforcements to Machin, was carried away by the general flight and returned to Girsovo.

The battle of Machin, which lasted 6 hours, ended with the complete victory of the Russian army.

Russian troops repulsed all the furious counterattacks of the Turks, who were trying to defeat the Russian corps separately, and broke the enemy's resistance. The main role in the battle was played by Kutuzov's left-flank corps.

Russian troops, which made a 30-verst night march, attacked the enemy on the move, being on their feet for 19 hours. Our troops have shown extraordinary endurance and courage, having before them twice the strength of the enemy. True, the Ottoman troops approached in parts and immediately rushed into counterattacks, which was beneficial to the Russians. And the vizier's corps (up to 20 thousand) did not have time to take part in the battle. Up to 4 thousand Turks were killed, no prisoners were taken. 35 guns captured. Russian losses - over 400 killed and wounded.

Having suffered crushing defeats in Anapa and at Machin, Porta finally realized the hopelessness of continuing the war.

The count on the support of Prussia and England, which encouraged Constantinople to continue the struggle, did not justify itself. The West only used Turkey against Russia as "cannon fodder". Prussia and England only demonstrated their readiness to fight: the Prussians deployed an army at the western borders of Russia, the British were preparing to send a fleet to the Baltic. But the Western powers were not going to really fight with Russia because of the interests of the Ottoman Empire.

The Machin victory destroyed the last hopes of the Sultan's court. The Grand Vizier resumed the peace talks that had begun in Iasi. This time, the Turkish delegation showed great pliability. The Ottomans were finally humbled by the victory of Ushakov's squadron at Kaliakria.
Photos used:,

Subscribe to our Telegram channel, regularly additional information about the special operation in Ukraine, a large amount of information, videos, something that does not fall on the site:

Dear reader, to leave comments on the publication, you must sign in.
  1. Lech from Android.
    Lech from Android. 2 July 2021 05: 50
    Kutuzov honed the art of fighting on the Turks, and his teachers were good.
    How many glorious officers appeared at this time in the Russian army.
    The tradition of defeating the enemy in any situation must be revived even now.
    On our western borders the enemy is again gathering its forces, much more insidious and dangerous.
    SERGE ANT 2 July 2021 05: 52
    For the battle at Babadagu, Kutuzov received the Order of St. Alexander Nevsky.
    On the fourth of this month, with the help of the Almighty, I had the good fortune to defeat the noble corps of the enemy under the command of Akhmet Serasker three-bunchuzhny, who had with him the three-bunchuzh Zhurn-oglu, the former chief in Khotin, and the two-bunchuzh Kurd Osman-pasha and Da-gir arnaut-khashan Bakhti-Girey with five sultans, having with him all the Nekrasovites and unfaithful Cossacks.
    The whole fortified camp, where nature and a certain degree of skill multiplied the obstacles, fell to us as prey, eight new cannons and several banners. The enemy, who received reinforcements on the 2nd, fought against fifteen thousand Turks and about one thousand two hundred belonging to the Khan; the loss of his killed extends to one thousand five hundred people, including many noble officials; the wounded could be saved up to thirty people, for the Cossacks pursuing the enemy, not even burdening themselves with prisoners, did not give mercy. In Babad, their large stores were destroyed, about thirty thousand quarters and a supply of gunpowder. In this case, our damage is very small and consists almost entirely of the Cossacks.
    I have just arrived at Tulcea, and I have the honor of escorting this with my duty Major Alfimov, whom I praise for his work in this matter before Your Excellency.
    Lieutenant General Golenishchev-Kutuzov
    And for the Battle of Machin with the Military Order of the Holy Great Martyr and Victorious George, 2nd class. In the highest rescript of Empress Catherine II about awarding M.I. Golenishchev-Kutuzov St.George cross said:
    "Your diligent service, brave and courageous deeds, with which you distinguished yourself in the battle at Machin and the defeat by our troops under the command of General Prince Repnin of a large Turkish army, the Supreme Vizier Yusuf Pasha led, where you, commanding over the troops of the left flank, with rapid and numerous enemy attacks overcame all difficult transitions, in your movements observed excellent art and order, and in the defeat of the enemy courage and bravery, inflict you worthy ... the Order of St. George ... second class. "
  3. parusnik
    parusnik 2 July 2021 06: 28
    Prussia and England only showed their readiness to fight
    And thank God that they didn't fit in.
  4. Olgovich
    Olgovich 2 July 2021 07: 46
    "Up to 4 thousand Turks were killed, no prisoners were taken. 35 guns were captured. Russian losses - over 400 killed and wounded."

    1:10 - brilliant result!

    "cannon fodder." Prussia and England only showed their readiness to fight: the Prussians deployed an army at the western borders of Russia, the British were preparing to send a fleet to the Baltic. But the Western powers were not going to really fight with Russia because of the interests of the Ottoman Empire. "

    so simply there was no one to speak for, so quickly and unconditionally Turkey was defeated.
    1. Seal
      Seal 4 July 2021 15: 30
      We always knew how to write relations. And so far this skill has not been spent on drink. And not only us.
  5. Daniil Konovalenko
    Daniil Konovalenko 2 July 2021 08: 14
    Like this, like it or not, but re-read A.A. Kersnovsky smile
  6. north 2
    north 2 2 July 2021 11: 20
    those trained at Machinsk later saved Russia in 1812; those trained at Khalkhin Gol later saved Russia in 1945. But those trained under Shipka and trained in Afghanistan later did not save Russia either in 1917 or in 1991. Because the enemy in the person of the fifth liberal column was inside Russia in 1917 and 1991, and he is stronger than any external enemy with weapons.
    Conclusion .
    If we want the current trained in Syria to save Russia in the event of a disaster from outside today, then the fifth liberal column inside Russia must be eliminated before an external enemy attacks Russia. Otherwise, none of today's Kutuzovs or Zhukovs who have now acquired the talent of commanders in Syria , against the fifth liberal column inside Russia, powerless and Russia will not be saved ...
  7. iouris
    iouris 2 July 2021 17: 47
    It would be better to think about how the Russians will crush someone.