One of the latest acts of the Russian-Persian war 1826 — 1828. was the capture of Erivan. After the Oshakan (Ashtarak) battle and the retreat of the troops of Abbas-Mirza from the Erivan khanate (Oshakan 17 (29) August 1827 Battle), the Russian army was able to proceed with the siege of Erivan. Moreover, at that time siege artillery arrived. On September 13, the main forces of the Separate Caucasus Corps approached Sardar Abad, the threshold of Erivan. There was a 2-th. garrison under the command of Erivan Gassan Khan. Caucasian governor I.F. Paskevich decided to attack the fortress from the south side. Here siege trenches could be dug under the cover of a large garden. The Persian troops made a sortie and attempted to cut down the garden, but they were driven off by carcass fire.
September 16 brought artillery to the fortress. The bombardment of the fortress immediately led to success. There were gaps in the walls, one of the towers collapsed. 19 September came out a truce and asked for a three-day truce. The commander-in-chief gave him 24 hours and threatened in case of continued resistance with a general assault. Gassan Khan, with the onset of night, was able to slip away with his squad. Learning about this, Paskevich ordered the infantry to occupy the fortress, and the cavalry to begin the pursuit. The pursuit of the enemy was successful: the khan detachments were defeated, having lost up to 500 people killed and wounded, to 250 - prisoners. In the fortress itself, 16 cannons and large stocks of bread, which were necessary to supply the army, were captured as trophies.
Russian troops immediately moved to Erivani, which was considered one of the strongest fortresses of Transcaucasia. The fortress had double walls and a moat, located on the steep bank of the river Zangi. To the south, about a quarter of a mile, the city itself was located, also protected by a stone wall. The troops pulled up to Erivan. Among them were significant volunteer units. So, in spring, Paskevich ordered the Tiflis Governor Sipagin to form volunteer battalions from local residents. Three squads were formed: two Armenian and one Georgian. On the way to Erivan, they grew in number. So, the 1-I Armenian squad, which had a little more than a hundred people leaving Tifliss, on the way to Erivan grew to almost 1 thousand fighters.
On the night of September 26 the bombing of the fortress began. Intensive work was carried out on the construction of siege trenches and artillery batteries. 28 September artillery shelling began in full force. The townspeople asked Gassan Khan to stop the resistance in order to save Erivan. However, he refused, hoping for the strength of the fortifications that had already withstood in 1808 and the assistance of the Persian army, which was located behind Arax. Gassan Khan did not want to lose power. In the Persian state, he was the third man, having the title of Sardar and the title of the Beglerbei. He was an autonomous ruler of a key border area (Khanate), had his own government (sofa), courtyard and army. He had complete power over the life and property of his subjects.
On September 29, when the southeastern corner tower and part of the wall collapsed, Paskevich offered to surrender the fortress, on condition that the garrison would freely enter Persia. However, Gassin Khan refused. He still hoped to resist. At the same time, its contradictions with the townspeople grew, the Armenians refused to fill the gaps in the walls and protect the city from the Russians. The siege work was continued, the power of the batteries was increased, the trenches were brought closer to the walls. The bombing of the fortress led to the emergence of new breaks. The day was approaching when the assault could be conducted in several directions. Gassan Khan sent a truce and offered a truce, until the fortress’s fate was determined at the Russian negotiations with Abbas-Mirza. But Paskevich did not succumb to this ploy, which was supposed to gain time. The Caucasian governor offered to surrender the fortress, but without any concessions.
On the night of October 1, the fortress was heavily bombarded. More than 900 bombs rained down on the city. Started strong fires. The moment of general assault was near. Siege trenches were laid to the pit. Russian artillery continued to systematically smash the fortifications, making new gaps and expanding the already made. At the same time bombs and grenades fell on the city. The Persian troops hurriedly tried to close up the gaps, and were subjected to caricature fire. The townspeople could not stand it. In the morning, representatives of 18-th. Armenian community demanded to surrender the fortress to the Russians. Otherwise, they threatened rebellion. Armenian militiamen were six times superior to the garrison of the fortress, consisting of Khan's soldiers and Persian infantry. In addition, the Persian troops were demoralized by severe destruction of fortifications, waiting for a general assault. Now they were threatened with a rebellion inside the walls, when the Russian troops at any time could go on the assault.
Gassan Khan hesitated. On the one hand, he understood that all the trumps on the side of the enemy. On the other hand, he did not want to surrender, he was afraid of revenge from the Persians and hoped for the appearance of the Shah's army in the near future. Then hundreds of Armenians rushed to the walls and began to crush the Persians. Sarbaz practically did not resist. Armenians began to wave white scarves from the walls. Russian troops, who were standing by the walls, preparing for the assault, began to enter the city. There was no resistance from the Persian troops. The guardsmen of the Consolidated Regiment occupied the gaps and towers, and sent the guards near the guns. Armenians welcomed the Russian troops. A strong detachment was sent to the north gate, to prevent a possible attempt to break through the enemy through the encirclement. A few hours later, Gassan Khan, his guards and 3, thousand garrison men, laid down weapon. Erivan was captured.
In Erivan, rich trophies were captured - 38 cannons, 2 howitzers, 9 mortars, 50 falconets, thousands of firearms and melee weapons, many artillery charges and 1,5 thousand gunpowder pounds. In warehouses found a lot of provisions. This stock was enough for 5 months of supplying the Separate Caucasus Corps. Many notable captives were taken, the Persian sardar and Erivanian ruler Gassan-Khan, the commander of the battalion of the Shah Guards Kusum-Khan, Aslan-Khan and many other noble people, of lower rank. This victory went to a little blood. The Caucasian corps lost a man killed and wounded during the siege of 52.
The liberation of Erevan from Persian rule caused a great response in the Armenian community scattered over a vast territory. Even representatives of the Armenian community of India sent a letter to Archbishop Nerses Ashtarak, where they wrote that "Armenia has risen from the ashes ... and this is the Armenian nation owes to the humane Moscow nation, among which we can always live safely and protected." It should be noted that the Armenian and Georgian volunteers actively participated in the liberation of the Erivan khanate from Persian rule. So in fights equestrian Georgian militia led by Prince R.I. Bagration (brother of the hero mortally wounded in the Borodino field), volunteer detachment of Shamshadinsky Bishop G. Manucharyan distinguished themselves. Georgian and Armenian churches have been active in mobilizing the Christian population against the Persians. Archbishop Nerses appealed to the people, where he called to fight along with the Russian regiments, and "if necessary, do not spare our last drop of blood."
The common population of the region was freed from the brutal system of Persian administration in Eastern Armenia. The system of power of the local Persian governors, the khans, the beks, which led to lawlessness, violence and outright robbery of ordinary people, was also a thing of the past. Persia has lost the last powerful stronghold of its rule in the Caucasus. Due to its historical significance and geographical location - the city was located at the borders of three states (Russia, Turkey and Iran), Yerevan became one of the main strongholds of the Russian presence in the South Caucasus.
The victorious conclusion of the war
A temporary government headed by General A. I. Krasovsky was created to manage the Erivan region. He received civil and military powers. Archbishop Nerses and the commandant of the fortress of Erivan, lieutenant colonel A. Borodin were to assist him. In Erivan, located dangerously close to the Persian border, a strong garrison was set up: the 4 regiment of the 20 Infantry Division with all its artillery, two Cossack regiments, the Ulan division, the pioneer company. The garrison was reinforced by volunteer formations - Muslim (Azerbaijani) militia, Armenian and Georgian volunteers.
The Russian corps, after the capture of Erivan, did not stand idle. Already on October 6, Russian troops began to move through Nakhichevan to Tabriz. Before that, the advance guard had gone far forward under the command of Georgy Eristov. The Russian avant-garde forcelessly crossed the Araks, passed the Dorada gorge and occupied the city of Marand. Local Muslims greeted the Russians affably. The troops of Abbas-Mirza at this time were located in 20 versts, in Hoe. Shah's troops, demoralized by previous failures, thawed literally before our eyes. Soon, the heir to the throne had no more than 3 thousand soldiers. The soldiers scattered and no persuasion or threats could stop them. The news of the fall of Erivan finally broke their morale.
In Tabriz, the “first minister” Shah Allayar-Khan was in charge of defense. He by persuasion, requests and violence tried to prepare the city for defense. Violators of the Shah will gouged out their eyes, cut off their ears and noses. But it was all in vain. Of the 60, thousands of the population of the city failed to form a large combat-ready militia. The entire garrison numbered about 6 thousand people and its combat capability was doubtful. When the 13 of October, the Eristov detachment appeared at the city walls, Allayar Khan ordered to open gunfire and withdrew his forces to the field, intending to attack the Russians. However, the battle did not work. After several shots from the Russian troops, the entire host of Allayar-Khan rushed into the race. And the cavalry, which consisted of local residents, and the urban lower classes, generally rushed to rob Abbas-Mirza Palace. Riots began in Tabriz. The head of the local clergy, Aga-Mir-Fettah, accompanied by the mullahs, came to Allayar-khan, who disappeared into a house in nature and demanded no resistance. The mullahs seized the keys to the city from the khan, and the procession from the clergy and honorary citizens went out to meet the Russian troops.
Part of the Russian detachment under the command of Major General Nikita Pankratiev with regimental music and under drumbeat entered the Tabriz and occupied the citadel. In Tabriz (Tabriz) 31 gun, 9 mortars, up to 3 thousand guns, a lot of ammunition and food, a foundry were seized. Among the captives was Allayar Khan and Talysh Khan Kelb-Hussein.
The main forces of the Russian corps approached Tabriz later. Paskevich and the Russian troops solemnly met. The governor's road was covered with flowers. There was a holiday in the city. I must say that the local Muslims began to oppose the Persians. In Ardabil, local residents disarmed Persian sarbazov. Russian troops on the way to Tabriz joined up to 2 thousand volunteers. A further offensive of the Russian troops could lead to a withdrawal from the obedience of South Azerbaijan. The Persians left South Azerbaijan. The small fortress of Alanzhi, located on inaccessible rocks, was occupied. It contained large stocks of food. The city of Maraga surrendered voluntarily.
On the road to peace
Persia has exhausted all possibilities for waging war. Erivan and Tabriz fell, the road to the central regions of the Persian Empire was open. Army, which could stop the Russian troops, was not. Existing troops were demoralized. Abbas-Mirza sent Paskevich a letter, where he spoke about peace and offered to come to the talks, about which he had already informed the shah. Abbas-Mirza sent Kaimakama, the third person in the government. He arranged to meet a Russian representative with a Persian prince 60 versts from Tariz, in Dehkorgan. Major General Pankratiev went there. At the same time, Paskevich refused to mediate the British in peace negotiations (in Tabriz at the court of Abbas Mirza was a British mission). Briton Kembel insistently asked for the role of mediator.
At the meeting of the two negotiators, it was decided to begin peace negotiations after the final withdrawal of the Persian troops in Persia itself, south of Lake Urmia. Russian troops occupied South Azerbaijan. Otherwise, the fighting resumed. Paskevich sent a detachment under the command of Vadbolsky in the direction of Ardabil. At the same time, the engineers and part of the infantry were engaged in repairing roads to the north. Cossack patrols guarded the location of troops.
Abbas-Mirza accepted the Russian conditions and left for the talks in person. He left to meet the detachment under the leadership of Benkendorf. The noble Persian was greeted at Lake Urmia with a salute and a parade of Russian troops, which Abbas-Mirza wished to receive. He was given such pleasure. A meeting of Paskevich and Abbas-Mirza took place in Dehkorgan. A. G. Griboedov was a diplomatic adviser to the governor-general and official authorized representative of the Russian Empire. Territorial concessions and a military contribution to 20 million rubles in silver were demanded from Tehran. Abbas-Mirza, as he could, resisted. However, on November 28 he signed two protocols: on the assignment of the Nakhichevan and Erivan Khanates and the payment of the indemnity.
It is clear that such serious concessions caused serious irritation in the Persian capital, where they did not understand the seriousness of the military defeat. In addition, British diplomats worked tirelessly. In London, they knew that the Ottoman Empire would soon come out against Russia. The advance of the Russians to the south in Britain was considered a threat to their strategic interests. They supported London in an effort to preserve the state of war between Russia and Persia, and the Ottomans. Turkey, after the Battle of Navarino, was preparing for a war with Russia with might and main, and wanted part of the Russian army to be tied with the Persians. Shah expressed dissatisfaction with the actions of his heir, and then ordered to delay the sending of indemnity. Finally, Feth Ali Shah refused to approve a preliminary peace agreement and deprived the heir of the authority to conduct peace negotiations with Russia.
Foreign Minister Abdul-Hassan Khan was sent from Tehran to continue the talks. He was in charge of the British mission, receiving a “salary” from the British. Under the pretext of illness, the Shah's envoy lingered on the 22 day’s journey and arrived at the negotiating table only on January 5 of the year 1828. Paskevich resolutely declared that the main articles of the peace agreement had already been approved and if Tehran does not recognize them, the Russian army will resume the offensive. Ivan Fedorovich in advance took this opportunity into account and prepared the troops for the offensive. In addition, the Caucasian governor knew that the delay in death was similar. He felt that a new war with the Turks was brewing. Then the Caucasian corps will have to fight on two fronts. He wrote to the Chief of General Staff, Count Dibich: “God grant that the Turkish war does not start until peace is reached, otherwise it will be very difficult for me.
The Persians knew that the words "white king's sardar" is not an empty threat. Behind them were victorious bayonets of the Russian army. In the event of a blow to the Caucasian corps, the Persian capital would have fallen. The next day, the Persian embassy was handed a declaration about the break in relations. Abbas-Mirza personally hurried to Tehran to explain to his father that the situation was catastrophic. And the Russian troops began to move. Paskevich announced a march on Tehran. Right-flank squad under the command of Pankratieva occupied Urmia. The left-flank squad of Sukhtelen captured Ardabil. The Ardabil garrison was headed by the sons of Abbas Mirza Mehmet Mirza and Dzhangir Mirza. They wanted to resist and defend the city where the Persian shahs were crowned. But local townspeople followed the example of the inhabitants of Tabriz. They crowded out to meet the Russian troops and expressed their submission. The Persians were forced to lay down their arms. Shah's garrison released. Russian trophies are 27 guns. Paskevich himself led the troops along the main road to Tehran. Discontent with the government grew throughout Persia. And the Agavis Mir-Fettah Tauriza promised to collect 12-thousand. equestrian corps to support Russian troops. If desired, Russia could bring all Persia under its control by supporting opponents of the Qajars.
Further resistance could lead to the fall of the Qajar dynasty. Persia was threatened by civil war. Shah immediately sent his eldest son with precious gifts to continue the negotiations. However, the Persians tried to cheat again, offering to appoint the British as intermediaries. Paskevich was hard. All articles were agreed, you only need to sign and execute them. The Persians, seeing the intransigence of the Russian commander, gave way.
At 12 a.m. from 9 to 10 (21-22) February 1828, the village of Turkmanchay near Tauris signed a peace treaty. The Nakhichevan and Erivan Khanates departed into full ownership of Russia. Tehran confirmed all the conditions of the Gulistan Peace Treaty of 1813, recognizing the transition to Russia of the Caspian coast to the river. Astara The border between the two powers was Araks. Persia pledged to pay an indemnity of 20 million rubles to Russia in silver. Russian troops remained on the territory of South Azerbaijan until all money was paid. Tehran reaffirmed the freedom of Russian navigation in the Caspian and the exclusive right of Russia to have a military here flotilla. Shah pledged to amnesty all the inhabitants of Iranian Azerbaijan, who helped the Russian troops. Within 4 months, all prisoners of war were released.
Before 4, March was a contribution. Its payment has become a heavy burden for Tehran. It was necessary to lay even the shah's golden throne. Collected and transferred most of the amount, but with the rest of the money came a hitch. Therefore, within Persia, a strong detachment was left under the command of Pankratiev. 8 March Tabriz handed over to Abbas Mirza.