Napoleon’s Bloodiest Day: Borodino 1812

In 1812 Napoleon invaded Russia with the largest army Europe had ever seen. As it advanced, the Russian army retreated, and by September Napoleon’s army had marched 470 miles into the depths of Russia. 70 miles west of Moscow near the village of Borodino, the Russian army, under a new commander, General Kutuzov, finally made a stand. The battle that followed was the bloodiest day’s fighting of the Napoleonic Wars, and proved one of the most infamous battles of history.

Special thanks to Alexander Averyanov for kind permission to use his paintings ‘Battle of Smolensk’, ‘Artilleryman’s Exploits’, ‘Prince Pyotr Bagration at Borodino: The Last Counterattack’, ‘Horse Guards at the Battle of Borodino’, ‘The Fighting for Shevardino Redoubt’, ‘The Fighting for Bagration Flèches’.

Special thanks to Egor Zaitsev for kind permission to use his painting ‘Prayer Before the Battle of Borodino’.

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📚Recommended books about the Napoleonic Wars (as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases):

📖Campaign: Borodino 1812 by Philip Haythornthwaite
📖The Napoleonic Wars by Todd Fisher
📖Combat: French Guardsman vs Russian Jäger 1812-14
📖Napoleon’s Wars by Charles Esdaile
📖Napoleon the Great by Andrew Roberts
📖1812: Napoleon’s Fatal March on Moscow

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Comment (31)

  1. Here is the latest episode of our Napoleonic Wars series – the giant slugging match of Borodino. It's our longest and most detailed battle sequence ever, and I hope you enjoy it!
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    Next episode will cover the retreat from Moscow, and will be out shortly before Christmas.

  2. Чем же он страшный, если Бородино ( она же Битва за Москву) он выиграл и собрал множество трофеев. Потери меньше. Тактическая цель взятие Москвы выполнена. 🙂

  3. Every year, on the first Sunday of September, a colorful reconstruction of the Battle of Borodino is held on the Borodino field. more than a thousand people participate, they represent infantry, artillery and cavalry. It's an amazing sight, look for a video on the Internet.

  4. How is creator of this video is still breathing after copying everything off reddit and didnt even trying to research

  5. This video is so horrible i have nothing to say about it 2 million brain washed kids who cant even use their brain to use common logic thats incredible

  6. Broski you are really one person? Your videos are sick. should do a video on your own history getting into history…and where you get your inspiration for documentaries

  7. forgive my ignorance but why would any commander attack a heavily entrenched defense position when they can be flanked and taken from the side or rear. the earthen redoubts which cannot be replaced would be negated by flanking..?

  8. The number of the French army at Borodino was about 195 000 people. The number of Russian troops was about 120,000 people. Napoleon's troops had a significant numerical superiority. In history books and in school textbooks, the number of French troops was deliberately underestimated.

  9. I heard a slightly different story about the beginning of the battle. The redoubt at Shevardino was the main position of Bagration's army, there were also regiments in the neighboring forest for a surprise attack and to cover Bagration's left flank, but during the inspection of the troops' positions, Chief of Staff Bennigsen withdrew troops from the forest and did not report this to Bagration. Because of this, the battle at Shevardino immediately went not according to the plan of the Russians and Bagration had to retreat immediately. After that, flushes were quickly created and the location of Bagration's army was vulnerable from the left flank for Davout's maneuver, but this was done on purpose, since in the case of this maneuver Bagration could quickly withdraw troops and then the Russian army would retreat to Mozhaisk and there would be no main battle. Napoleon understood this, so if he wanted to defeat the Russians in a decisive battle, he had to attack the flushes only head-on.

  10. Αν ο Ναπολέοντας είχε την Παναγία του Smolensk με το μέρος του, θα είχε κυριέψει τη Ρωσία εκείνη τη μέρα. Αλλά δεν την είχε

  11. When fighting against Prussians, Napoleon would face armies defending provinces that they didn't belong to or didn't even speak the same language (like it would be the case with someone from Münich coming to defend Bavaria) and soldiers were more likely to surrender or to retreat. Now, fighint Russians at their own territory and at the door of their spiritual capital is something entirely different. Thus, the fierce combat and the unbroken morale of the russian troops.

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