Congress in Nemirov opened 11 (22) in July 1737 Russia was represented at the congress: a participant in the negotiations in Ganja and on the Prut River, Baron Peter Shafirov, Artemy Volynsky and the former ambassador in Port Ivan Neplyuev. The general leadership was exercised from St. Petersburg by Vice-Chancellor Count Andrei Osterman. The Russian delegation had a maximum plan and a minimum plan. Maximum requirements included: the establishment of borders along the Dniester and Kuban; transfer to the Russian citizenship of the Crimean Khanate (as a variant, the redemption of the peninsula for 120 — 150 thousand rubles), without the right to have a fleet in the harbors of the peninsula; Moldavia and Wallachia were to gain independence and enter the sphere of influence of Russia. A more moderate plan included: Russia did not claim the Crimean peninsula, but demanded the transfer of Kerch and Enikale; Kabarda was declared a neutral territory; Khotyn transferred to Poland. The third, the most moderate option, suggested: the establishment of borders along the Kuban River, the Azov Sea coast to the River Byrd and further along the Dnieper and Dniester; disruption of the fortifications of Ochakov, Kinburn and Perekop, payment of monetary compensation for losses from the raids of the Crimean Tatars; providing Russian merchants with the rights of free trade in the territory of the Ottoman Empire.
Vienna was not going to prevent Russia from asserting its conquests. Claims on the Crimea and Taman were well known in Austria. The Austrians themselves claimed Wallachia, Bosnia, South Serbia and Albania. For Russia, an unpleasant surprise was the fact that Austria, in addition to Wallachia, claims Moldova. Both Orthodox regions of St. Petersburg could not yield to Austria. In turn, the claims of St. Petersburg to the patronage of Wallachia and Moldavia came as a shock to the Austrians. Vienna did not want to allow Russia into the Balkans, fearing that Russia would become an even more dangerous rival than the weakening Ottoman Empire. As a result, allied disputes among themselves weakened them in the face of the Turkish delegation.
Turkish ambassadors received orders from the Sultan not to yield anything. The position of the Ottomans was facilitated by the disputes of the allies and the support of other powers. As the worst option, the Turks considered the treaty on 1700 and 1718 terms (with Russia and Austria). In this Port was counting on the help of ambassadors of other powers. On August 3, Empress Anna Ivanovna rejected a proposal for mediation, but the envoys of England, Holland and France were present in Nemirova and tacitly supported Turkish representatives. The French ambassador, the Marquis de Villeneuve, who had the order to disrupt the negotiations, advised the Vizier to delay the negotiations, allowing the allies to quarrel themselves. Paris opposed the division of the Balkan possessions of Turkey and did not want to expand the sphere of influence of Russia with access to the Mediterranean Sea. England and Holland, having significant benefits in the eastern trade, were concerned about possible competition from more geographically close to the Turkish possessions of Austria and Russia.
Russian diplomat Peter P. Shafirov
Due to the delay in confirming the credentials of the Turkish delegation, the first meeting of the congress was held only on 5 (16) on August 1737. By this time, the Russian army had already left the Crimean peninsula, while the Austrians left Wallachia and Bosnia, that is, the allies could not dictate terms from a position of strength. The Russian delegation made the following demands: the annexation of the Crimea and Taman to the Russian empire (“just for the sake of eternal safe peace, as the Port did not have any profit from such wild peoples”); trade freedom and the protectorate of Russia over Wallachia and Moldova. Long disputes and quarrels began, during which the Russians and Austrians constantly intrigued against each other. The representative of Austria, Count Heinrich von Oshtein, spoke out against the Russian claims on Wallachia and Moldova even more fiercely than the Ottomans, and in response stated the emperor's claims on Bosnia, Serbia, Albania, Wallachia and Moldova. The Turks demanded the return of Ochakov, Azov and Taman, although they expressed their readiness to reimburse Russia for military expenses.
Soon, the Allies were finally able to negotiate and 11 (22) of August came up with joint demands. To the Russian Empire, Turkey was to cede Azov and Kinburn, establish borders along the Dniester and Kuban, and pledge to destroy the fortifications of Perekop. Austria, the Turks had to cede Niš, Vidin, Novi Sad (in a pinch, destroy Vidin and exchange Zvornik for Bihac) and amend the trade agreement. The parties also had to guarantee the inviolability of the borders of all three powers.
In the meantime, the Sultan appointed a new vizier, Musa-Oglu-Pasha, a resolute man and obviously not disposed to give in to his enemies. The Turkish delegation asked for 40 days to agree on a position with Constantinople and to reflect. In addition, France opposed the seizure of land belonging to Turkey. According to the head of the French government, Cardinal Fleury, the Ottoman Empire should have been maintained, as the most important element of the European equilibrium.
In early October, the Ottoman delegation interrupted the congress, although the Austrians had already agreed to be satisfied with only part of Serbia, and the Russians with Azov, Ochakov and Kinburn. True, on September 20, the sultanian dragoman Gikas proposed to Volynsky to sign an agreement on the basis of the provisions of 1700 of the year and the creation of a neutral zone by ruining the lands from Kiev and Vasilchikov to Bender and Ochakov. But this proposal, which does not give a guarantee against the Tatar raids, was rejected. In November, the Turkish army invaded Wallachia, defeated the Austrians, and in December took Craiovo. Anna Ivanovna, urgently summoning Minikh and Lassi to Petersburg, ordered them to prepare for a new campaign.
The head of the foreign policy of the Russian Empire in the 1720 and 1730 years, count Andrei Ivanovich Osterman
1738 Campaign Plan of the Year
Already in January, 1738, the plan for a new campaign was drawn up and approved by the Empress. At the end of March, Russia and Austria signed a joint action convention. This time Moldova was chosen as the main thrust. Two armies were formed again: the Dnieper - under the command of Minich, and the Don - Lassi. In general, the 1738 campaign plan differed little from the 1737 campaign. Minich’s army delivered the main blow, but this time not on Ochakov, but on Bender. The Lassi army delivered a diversionary strike in the Crimea in order to divert the horde of Giray and part of the Turkish troops.
The composition of the more powerful, the Dnieper army included more than 108 thousand people, of which almost 95 thousands of regular troops. Artillery consisted of: 200 regimental guns, 62 large-caliber guns, 16 howitzers, 11 mortars and 444 "mortars", caliber in 6 pounds. The artillery also had 36 pontoons with all the necessary accessories. The Don Army Lassi numbered about 65 thousands of people, including 40 thousands of soldiers and officers of regular troops.
By April 15, Minich’s army was supposed to focus on the general assembly point, on the Omel'nik river, and from there go to the Bug. After crossing the Bug, Russian troops had to go to the Dniester and take Bender. The aim of the Lassi army was a new invasion of the Crimea and the seizure of Kafa, the main Ottoman base in the Crimea. Austria, in accordance with the convention, pledged to deploy on the Danube an army of 127 thousands of people with 100 guns and to besiege Vidin.
Actions Dnieper Army Minich
The beginning of the campaign had to be postponed. The Russian army was tormented by previous problems: the slow arrival of recruits, the shortage of horses, the muddy roads from spring rains. Only from 15 of April did the regiments assigned to the Dnieper Army begin to arrive at the Perevolochna. The gathering at Omelnik was late for a whole month. Only 22 May Russian troops set off.
Speaking from Omelnik, the Russian army marched in three division columns, followed by a wagon train. Moreover, carts, so as not to stretch, followed a broad front. Ahead of the army, the advance guard of five or seven regiments moved. 4 June avant-garde went to the Ingulu River, and the next day the whole army pulled up. Intelligence told the commander that they were being met by a large Tatar army and the Turkish army from Bender. All this was fine with Minikh, who himself wanted to give a “general battle” as soon as possible. On June 19, a squad of apartment-makers led by Fermor reached the Bug. 21 June, the main forces approached the same and proceeded to bridge bridges. To cover the bridges at the same time built earthworks.
The future path of the army of Munnich was based on the information of the Cossack intelligence officers. We had to go up the Bug to the mouth of the Savran and further up this river to the headwaters of the Molokish and then down the Molokish to its confluence with the Dniester. This route was chosen because there was “enough feed, forests and water” on it. June 29 army advanced further up the Bug. In the evening of the same day, when the soldiers had already begun to set up a camp on the Kodim River, it was reported that an enemy had appeared on the opposite bank.
On the morning of June 30, the enemy's 10-thousand cavalry unit attacked the guards of the 2-th division, but was repelled. However, in the center of the Turks managed to surround the detachment of the foreman Shipov, who too moved forward. The attacked squad consisted of only 200 people with two guns. Russian soldiers fought back with exceptional courage. Field Marshal Munnich himself, with a detachment of cuirassiers, hussars and Zaporizhzhya Cossacks, rushed to help them. Gustav Biron also advanced from the left flank with a horse and a foot guard. As a result, the enemy retreated. In a battle on the Kodima River, the Russians lost the 38 soldiers killed and the 44 wounded. The losses of the Turks reached 200 people. At the same time, a small enemy detachment attacked a train that went to the army from the Ukraine. Thanks to the open area, the enemy cavalry was discovered in time, and the transport commander, Colonel Danilov, quickly built a wagenburg. Our soldiers fought back until Lieutenant General Karl Biron came to the rescue with four regiments. The enemy immediately retreated, and the wagon train arrived at the camp, without losing a single carriage.
July 6 army reached Savrani and began to prepare for the crossing. The first to cross the pontoon bridges to the opposite bank was the division of C. Biron. The other two divisions forced the river the next day. Army camped. July 8 before the Russian army suddenly appeared Turkish-Tatar army. The soldiers were alarmed, but they still clearly did not have time to build themselves up in battle order before the attack of the enemy cavalry. The situation was saved by Zaporizhzhya Cossacks. They occupied the hill in front of the right flank of the army, hid behind carts and with accurate fire repulsed several attacks in a row. As a result, the army managed to line up and the Turks lost the factor of surprise. The Turks and Tatars did not dare to enter into a general battle with the Russian army ready for battle and retreated into the neighboring forest.
Minich planned to continue the battle and built an army in line. The right flank rested against the camp of the Cossacks, and the left - into a deep beam. Field artillery under the command of Lieutenant-General Levendal rose to the top, on the right flank. In the camp, under Rumyantsev, only a small guard remained. Soon the Turkish-Tatar cavalry went on the attack. The enemy several times attacked the right, then the left flanks, some riders even walked around the line and attacked the camp. Russian troops repelled all attacks. At about 5 hours of the evening, once again repulsed, the Turks retreated, leaving more than a thousand dead on the battlefield. Minich noted that the battle at Savran raised the spirit of the army.
July 9 army continued to move, heading for the Dniester, the top of Savran. With this route, the right flank of the troops was securely covered by the river. To protect the left flank put all irregular forces. Tatars and Turks were constantly disturbed by Russian troops with minor clashes. As a result, the troops were going very slowly, doing only 9-10 versts a day. The summer heat again began to exert its pernicious effect on the soldiers. In order to prevent the spread of mass diseases, the commander ordered the officers to watch out for soldiers not to drink water from dubious sources, and to arrange a bathhouse on vacation. Patients were given wine and extra bread portions.
As the Russian army approached the Dniester, refugees from the lands ruined by the Turks began to arrive in it: Moldovans, Hungarians, Volokhs. They reported that the population was looking forward to the Russians and wanted to “surrender to the highest patronage”. On July 19 the Russians reached the headwaters of Savrani. Here the Russian troops had to overcome the most difficult part of the road, without water. Troops marched through mountainous, forested terrain. Taking heightened precautions, and putting up a strong avant-garde. 23 July, when there was about 20 versts to the Dniester, reconnaissance reported that the enemy army was located 2 versts from the army, at the Gur Bilotski tract. Minich quickly built troops in battle order and very on time - the Turks and Tatars went on the attack. In this battle, the Russian artillery especially distinguished itself, from which, as the field marshal reported, “the proud enemy was soon broken with great confusion and, like this, dispersed from the wind.”
Having suffered another setback, the Turkish-Tatar command changed tactics. Enemy cavalry now attacked small detachments, the Turks and Tatars used the tactics of "scorched earth", burned grass in the way of the army, drove cattle. According to the testimony of a participant in the events, “the heat was great and often troubled by the enemy, which caused considerable weakness in the army to show up, and, more than that, the cattle became very weak”. In addition, Minich’s hope did not come true that the main forces of the Turkish army were forcing the Dniester and accepting a general battle. The Turks prepared for defense and fortified their shore with powerful structures. The considerable width and depth of the river did not allow fording it, and the steep banks further complicated the crossing. On the banks of the river stood a Turkish army of up to 60 thousands of people with 60 cannons and 16 mortars.
On July 25, Minich gathered a military council, which decided to continue the campaign and find a way to cross and "drive away the Turkish army." July 26 army movement resumed. The troops marched in two columns, and between them all the carts hid. An attempt by enemy cavalry to attack the rearguard was repelled. In the evening of July 26, the army camped between the Molokish and Biloch rivers, all in one cannon shot from the Dniester. At night, the soldiers started building batteries on the banks of the Dniester. In the morning of July 27, the Turks opened fire on Russian positions. By the evening of the next day, Russian batteries began to operate. However, one artillery could not bring down the enemy. A weary army could not force a water barrier.
Minich was forced to turn the troops back. In early August, 1738, the Russian troops went back. The Turks immediately crossed the Dniester along with the Belgorod Tatars. But the Turkish command did not decide to enter the main battle, and the Ottoman army followed the Russian. Only a few small detachments of the Janissaries and the Tatars for some time started up skirmishes with the Russians. By the end of September, the whole army entered Little Russia and settled into winter apartments. At the fighting ended.
“The local places,” wrote Minikh to the empress, “for a military operation of such a large army are very difficult and incapable, because in small rivers that flow into the Dniester, the whole army is not satisfied with water ... Although the enemy strongly and often surrounded us and attacked, however , in the army, in the course of the entire campaign, no more than 700 people were beaten and 250 was injured; on the contrary, the enemy suffered a lot of damage from us every day and, of course, would have been defeated if it had moved to this side of the Dniester; the transition of our army to the other side of this river in its current state of harness is absolutely impossible. ”
Thus, the campaign clearly failed. When in St. Petersburg they began to insistently demand that the army should go at least to Hotin, Minikh had to speak more frankly. In early September, Field Marshal reported: “People had no rest during the past winter, and throughout the campaign they marched incessantly, and recruits to the army were given when shelves from winter apartments were made and many died, others were sick, the rest were very tired; in horses in cattle considerable damage; Uniform things due to last year’s bad winter journey were not all brought to the army ... We were forced to bombs and sink bombs, and heavy gun carriages near the Dniester, where there was no water cattle and there was a considerable decline, to break ... Dragoons and soldiers flee, and to keep them from escaping is possible only with the hope of returning to the fatherland and peace. ” The sad result of the march to the Dniester was aggravated by the fact that the outbreak of the epidemic forced the Russian troops to leave Ochakov and Kinburn. Before that, fortifications were destroyed. That is, the positive results of the 1737 campaign were also lost.
Lassi Army Hike
A new trip to the Crimea also failed. The Don army of Lassi, as in 1737, gathered again at Kalmius. While Lassi was gathering strength, the Kalmyks of Dunduk-Omo raided the Kuban, ravaging the nomads of the local Tatars, then the Kalmyks joined the Russian army. By May 25, Russian troops reached the Middle Berda. It went there flotilla Breda.
Here, the commander received news that a Tatar detachment led by Amazat Giray was stationed on the River Dairy Waters. Thousands of Cossacks, led by Colonel Malyshkin, immediately went to explore 2. They not only found the enemy, but attacked him and completely crushed. May 27 Malyshkin returned with a victory and big booty to the army.
"Languages" reported that the Khan with the 30-thousandth army was behind Perekop, whose fortifications were fully restored. Peter Lassi, having studied the situation, decided again to bypass Perekop and go to the rear of the Tatars. 24 June his army was located at the boundary Odip, where the crossing of the Sivash was located.
Meanwhile, the Bredal flotilla again encountered the Ottoman fleet. Bradal, whose flotilla remained at the Berdyansk Spit, 25 May received information that an enemy fleet was coming to Vissarion Spit. Three boats under the command of Captain Herzenberg were sent to explore. As it turned out, the Ottoman fleet was really there, and strong: the 3 battleship, accompanied by many small vessels. The Turks sank the boats of Herzenberg, and he had to get to Bredi by land. After that, the Ottomans went to the west.
On June 2, the Breda court went to Genchi to meet with the army. Two days later, the vice-admiral received news of the approach of the Turkish fleet. In the evening, enemy ships began to surround the boats and press them to the Fedotova Spit. Bredel resorted to a tried and tested tactic. He landed people on the shore and began to build fortifications. However, this time Lassi waited for the flotilla at Genchi. Having set up a strong battery on the shore, Bredal ordered under the cover of her guns to dig a canal through the braid and transfer the boats to its opposite side. The whole operation was carried out under constant shelling of the enemy and successfully completed on June 15.
Then the Ottomans went to Gencha, to intercept the Russian flotilla. 16 June they overtook Brida. 119 Admiral Bredal's small ships collided with Genchi with a Turkish squadron of 7 battleships and frigates, 3 large galleys and 109 smaller ships. As before, Bredel could not take the fight to the sea. The Russians landed and built batteries. All attacks of the Turks, including the night, were repelled. The Turkish fleet could not achieve victory.
Lassi ordered to wade across the Sivash, taking advantage of the fact that the wind forced the water from the Sivash to the Sea of Azov. Only a few wagons in the rear guard, who did not have time for the others, sank as soon as after the transition of the army the sea flooded again. And to divert the attention of the enemy, Lassi sent the irregular cavalry (Kalmyks and Cossacks) to Perekop. Cossacks and Kalmyks disturbed the Tatars with small skirmishes.
Having learned about the beginning of the crossing of Russian troops over the Sivash, Khan Mengli-Girey retreated from Perekop, leaving strong garrisons in two fortresses: the old one - the Op-Cap and the new one - Chivaskul. After the crossing, Lassi troops took Chivascula. Then the commander turned to the commandant of Op-Cap with a proposal to capitulate. The commandant refused. 27 June Russian troops launched a siege. Soon the Russian batteries began a massive bombardment. For two days (27-28 of June) it was released: 5-pood bombs - 135, 18-pound cores - 98,12-pound cores - 90, 6-pound grenades - 160, brandkugeli - 56. Unable to withstand a powerful shelling, 2 Thousands of Turkish soldiers laid down weapon. The fortress found up to one hundred guns, mostly pig-iron, an adequate supply of gunpowder, but very little bread. The path to the peninsula was open. Lassi began a movement inside the Crimea.
At first, Lassi again wanted to invade the Crimea. However, this idea had to be abandoned. First, the peninsula ravaged by two invasions could not supply the army with food and fodder. Secondly, the area of Ochakovo and Kinburn swept the sea. Therefore, they were afraid to carry supplies along the Dnieper. Doctors convincingly argued Lassi that from the Lower Dnieper the infection can easily be carried both to the Crimea and Little Russia. Food ships from Azov died during a storm. Not wanting to risk, the commander decided to return first to Perekop, and then to the Dnieper. The military council assembled on July 6 expressed complete agreement with his opinion.
During the retreat to Perekop there was a battle with the Tatar army. July 9 20-thousandth enemy army attacked the rearguard, consisting of Little Russian Cossacks. The Tatar cavalry crushed the Cossacks and threw them directly onto the Azov Dragoon Regiment, which was in a hurry to the rescue. Dragoon orders were also crushed. Panic from the Cossacks passed on to dragoons. Lassi immediately sent a Dragoon regiment under the command of Lieutenant-General Spiegel to the rearguard of 4, but they could not throw the enemy away. Then the infantry from the main forces moved to the Tatars. Finally, after a stubborn battle, the Tatars retreated. The losses of the Russian army on that day were serious: killed 562 man and wounded 483. Tatars left on the battlefield more than a thousand corpses.
Until the end of August, the Russian army stood at Perekop. In September, Peter Lassi ordered to blow up the Perekop fortifications and move to Little Russia to winter. Thus, the third Crimean campaign was not particularly successful. In addition to the destruction of the border fortresses, no special results were achieved. Leslie understood that he would be dissatisfied with his actions in Petersburg, and therefore he himself submitted his resignation. But Anna Ivanovna refused and asked to continue the service. The Austrians were more categorical. They attacked the Russian empress with complaints, claiming that the Russian troops did nothing to help their ally.
Minikh dismissed the accusations of the Allies: “The complaints of the Austrian court about the return of the Russian army, the failure of both campaigns, as a result of which all Turkish forces turn against Austria, these complaints are untenable: both of our campaigns, both last year and present, distracted from the Austrian borders a strong Turkish the army and all the Tatars ... That in military actions against a strong enemy it is not always possible to fulfill the operational plans, it’s the Tsarsars themselves experienced, because, having a strong army, in two campaigns not only Viddi they could not take it, but they also lost their fortresses. ”
The fighting in 1738 between the Turkish and Austrian troops unfolded against the backdrop of an epidemic of plague, which hampered the actions of the parties. July 3 at the village of Root in Meadia Turkish 17-th. The hull was broken 40-th. Austrian army. The Turks lost their killed 2000, the Austrians - 1300 people. Austrians seized 30 banners. However, after this success, the Austrian army turned to defense and waited for the Russian offensive. At the same time, Austrian diplomats constantly hurried Russians, complained about the difficult conditions of warfare, argued that the Turks would soon throw all their forces on Austria. In this case, the truth in their words was. The epidemic really interfered with military action. She was especially rampant in the Temesvara area, in the garrison of which 20-30 people died daily.
In mid-August, Turkish troops took the Orshov fortress and invaded the Banat region. Vienna began to ask St. Petersburg to send an auxiliary corps to Transylvania and express its fear that in case of defeat, Belgrade and Temeshvar would have to leave.
Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI
A number of objective and subjective factors (plague epidemic, inertia of the Russian bureaucracy, etc.) prevented the success of the Russian army. Reaching the Dniester and entering the Crimea, the Russian troops returned. Moreover, because of the plague, we had to leave the previously conquered Ochakov and Kinburn. The epidemic almost paralyzed the fighting on the Turkish-Austrian front. As a result, neither side solved the tasks.
A big role in the failure of the campaign was played by the slowness of the Russian army. What Russian troops are capable of, which act on the basis of the principle “eye, speed and onslaught”, will be shown later by A. Suvorov. A detailed description of the 1738 campaigns was made for his government by the captain of the Austrian army Paradis. Despite some exaggerations, this document contains a lot of facts that allow you to better understand the mistakes in the organization of the troops that the Russian command made. Thus, the Austrian officer noted that the Russian troops on the march were moving very slowly because of the huge and poorly organized transports. “In case of a disorder in a convoy,” he writes, “carts are entangled and interlocked in such a way that the army is sometimes forced to stand for two or three hours in one place, while the air is filled with shouts from many cab drivers ... The Russian army uses more than 30 hours for such a transition, what other army uses four hours. Every cart wants to overtake the one who is ahead, which is why they are mated and mixed up; cattle in cramped quarters, without food, constantly chasing, falls dead ... ". Despite all attempts by Minikh to restrict commanders, many officers from noble families had enormous carts that did not correspond to their real needs. Some sergeants of the guard had, for example, on 16 carts.
The Austrian officer also noted the weakness of the Russian cavalry, which is so necessary for the Turkish-Tatar cavalry to fight. “True, there are dragoons,” according to the report, “but their horses are so bad that dragoons cannot be read for cavalry; they cover and burden horses with their weapons and luggage so that they can barely move ... ” It is well known from the Russian record-keeping documents that it was difficult to collect horses even in the first year of the war, and in subsequent years, when many animals died, the situation only worsened. Due to the lack of cavalry, the cover of foragers was often assigned to the infantry, which also slowed down the army movement. Paradise also pointed to the lack of discipline in general, to "some long-standing negligence in Russian officers." Minich could force them to act, but in his absence all the joy ended.
To be continued ...