Military Review

Battle of Plovdiv

Battle of Plovdiv

January 15 The battle of Plovdiv began on January 1878, which became the victorious finale of the next Russian-Turkish war.
At the beginning of 1878, the Russo-Turkish war was approaching the final. Behind were the crossing with the battles across the Danube, the heroic defense of the Shipka Pass and the months-long siege of Pleven.

In the last days of December 1877, Russian troops crossed the snow-covered Balkan Mountains. General Joseph Gurko, one of the most decisive and successful commanders of that war, commanded the strike force — over 70, thousands of bayonets and sabers.

Turks sincerely believed that in the midst of winter, the snow trails on mountain passes would be impassable. For six days the soldiers of Gurko fought not with the enemy, but with nature and the landscape, breaking through the passed passes frozen and blown by the mountain winds. Guards Preobrazhensky and Semenovsky regiments along with the Caucasian Cossack brigade were in the forefront.

The frost was such that the soldiers' boots had to wear another shoe - hastily made “galoshes” of buffalo hides with fur inside. Often guns, other loads and even horses carried on their hands. We slept right in the snow, wrapped in felt. At one of these nights at the feet of Gurkoe asleep, without noticing him under the snow, one of the soldiers sat down. The tired general did not even wake up. When one of his orderly men said that the private soldier was sitting on the general, the soldier did not believe for a long time ...

4 January 1878, the Russians, finally descending from the Balkan slope, occupied Sofia, the capital of the future independent Bulgaria. The Turks, who did not expect the appearance of the Russians, fled, with almost no resistance. Geurk Pasha, as they called General Gurko, the Ottomans knew well - at the mercy of the Russians they threw not only a part of the cannons, but also hospitals with the wounded.

At the gates of Sofia, Russian liberators were met by crowds of people led by Orthodox clergy. General Gurko’s speech to the inhabitants was short: “God will help us to free the Russian by force weapons and the rest of Bulgaria! ”

The Turks, who did not expect a breakthrough, retreated from all the passes of the Balkan Mountains, so that, having gathered together at Adrianople (now the city of Edirne), reliably cover the capital, Istanbul. Gurko made a decision: do not let the enemy gather all the forces together, intercepting part of the retreating from the ancient city of Philippopol (now Bulgarian Plovdiv).

At the approaches to it, Gurko's soldiers overtook and attacked the 50-thousandth Turkish army. The battle began on 8 in the morning of January 3 (January 15 in a new style) 1878 of the year. The Turks, realizing that the fate of the war was being decided here, fought hard. The Russians had to attack the Turkish field fortifications, fording the Maritsa River, fording the pieces of ice under the enemy fire.

On the night of January 4 (16), in Plovdiv (Philippopol), invisible to the Turks, several squadrons of Russian lancers broke through, seizing the building of the city station, where a magnificent dinner was prepared for Commander-in-Chief Suleiman Pasha and his staff. By morning, the whole city was already in the hands of the Russians, but the stubborn fighting in the vicinity continued for another day.

Almost 30 of thousands of retreating Turks were cut off from the road to Istanbul and tried to fight their way to their own. The “Arabs” fought especially hard, as the Russian soldiers called the regiments of the Ottoman army formed in Egypt. The “Arabs” were well trained and armed with the most modern weapons — multiply-charged American rifles, whereas the Russians had single-shot rifles.

However, despite stubborn resistance and the latest weapons, Turkish troops were defeated. According to the results of three days of fighting near Plovdiv, which began on 15 in January of 1878, the enemy suffered heavy losses - 20 thousands of dead and wounded. All Turkish artillery, 114 guns, went to the Russian.

The idea of ​​the Turkish command to create a new strong line of defense on the approaches to Istanbul was destroyed, and the fate of the Russian-Turkish war was solved.
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  1. karevik
    karevik 19 January 2016 15: 29
    We beat and we will beat!
  2. Trapperxnumx
    Trapperxnumx 19 January 2016 15: 31
    And still a little sorry that they did not take Istanbul then ...
    That this city did not become a reliable Russian deadbolt for the Black Sea ...
  3. SMS
    SMS 19 January 2016 15: 34
    The country must know its true heroes! In Bulgaria, Russian Field Marshal Gurko erected monuments and called the streets, but what about us? It is good that at least recently the commander’s ashes were reburied with dignity, after the Bolsheviks defiled him in the revolutionary years and how did he interfere with them?
    1. dmi.pris
      dmi.pris 19 January 2016 17: 51
      There, Skobelev is revered as the White General .. In schools, his portraits hang in a ceremonial white uniform, on a white horse .. The Bulgarians gratefully remember that war, unfortunately further relations with Russia, alas ... unlike Serbia. They did not experience bitterness of civil war ..
      Quote: SMS
      The country must know its true heroes! In Bulgaria, Russian Field Marshal Gurko erected monuments and called the streets, but what about us? It is good that at least recently the commander’s ashes were reburied with dignity, after the Bolsheviks defiled him in the revolutionary years and how did he interfere with them?
      1. Aleksander
        Aleksander 20 January 2016 09: 16
        Quote: dmi.pris
        There and Skobelev revered-White General

        Skobelev incognito. alone, dressed in civilian clothes, walked along Constantinople, scouting fortifications in view of the alleged assault. Courage was extraordinary!
  4. izya top
    izya top 19 January 2016 15: 43
    and the "brothers" are licking up the west again request probably all the Slavs that are west of the Neman are not remembering kinship what
    1. Army soldier2
      Army soldier2 19 January 2016 16: 22
      Do you remember on the banks of the Dnieper?
      1. izya top
        izya top 19 January 2016 16: 32
        Quote: Army 2
        Do you remember on the banks of the Dnieper?

        The Dnieper not only flows through the ruin
        1. Scraptor
          Scraptor 20 January 2016 14: 15
          How so? And who dug there?
    2. The comment was deleted.
  5. Const
    Const 19 January 2016 15: 58
    One of the battles in which the Russians did not take advantage of the victory. And what is gratitude.
  6. borys
    borys 19 January 2016 19: 02
    What kind of fashion went to water all the Bulgarians? If in Bulgaria the pro-Western right-
    government, this does not mean that most Bulgarians belong to
    Russia is bad. And didn’t Gorbachev surrender Eastern Europe?
  7. cth; fyn
    cth; fyn 20 January 2016 10: 37
    Why are our losses not indicated?
  8. Bagatur
    Bagatur 20 January 2016 10: 57
    For the entire war, according to the Russian genschab, irretrievable losses of about 22, injured about 000.
  9. Grishka cat
    Grishka cat 20 January 2016 21: 41
    Russia is too generous and the attitude of Russians is merciful to defeated enemies. Shamil in Kaluga, too, was kindly received. Former German and Japanese prisoners of war recalled a good Russian attitude. They forgot the bastards that were doing on our land!
  10. Vladislav 73
    Vladislav 73 21 January 2016 22: 52
    It should also be remembered that the conditions of the Peace of San Stefano, abundantly watered with the blood of Russian soldiers, were severely curtailed at the Berlin Congress, where, with the help of Bismarck, England and Austria-Hungary again opposed Russia, and even warmed their hands on this. occupied Bosnia and Herzegovina. England received Cyprus for the support of Turkey. And Russia? "Gratitude" of the "Slavic brothers" .... request
  11. tiaman.76
    tiaman.76 10 February 2016 22: 42
    such victories and the result is zilch