Back

Raevsky Battery on Borodino field photo

At the top of the Mound Height was located the Rayevsky battery. This was the key point where the decisive events of the battle of Borodino unfolded. In 1839, the main monument to Russian soldiers was installed here, and the Borodino Museum was opened nearby.

A battery of 18 guns and the 7th infantry regiment, commanded by General Nikolay Rayevsky, were located on the Mound Height. Main attacks of Napoleon`s army were directed here during the day. The capture of this height meant the domination of the artillery over the field of battle.

At the beginning of the Borodino battle, the main combat actions were on the left flank of the Russian troops, at Bagration fleches position. Napoleon wanted to crush the Russian left flank and surround the troops. To protect the Bagration fleches, part of the regiment was removed from the Raevsky Battery. At 11 o`clock the corps of Eugene Bogarne, taking advantage of the weakening of the defense of the Mound Height, attacked and captured the height. This was the key moment of the battle. If the French army could have set up their artillery here, they would have won the battle brilliantly.

At this moment, generals Yermolov and Kutaysov appeared near the battery. They were following Bagration fleches. They took the 18th chasseur regiment and the Ufa regiment with them and led them in a bayonet attack. The hand-to-hand combat at Raevsky`s Battery was the most desperate moment of the battle of Borodino. The French were driven out of Raevsky Battery.

In the afternoon, realizing that it was impossible to crush the left flank of the Russian troops, Napoleon concentrated all his efforts on capturing the Raevsky battery. The attack was conducted by 34 cavalry regiments, and the French suffered huge losses. Later, Raevsky Battery was called "the grave of the French cavalry".

At 4 o`clock, the Raevsky battery was still taken by the French, but the Russians withdrew their front behind it, and this did not change the course of the battle. The troops of both sides had suffered such heavy losses that it was impossible to continue the battle. In the evening, it soon ended.

The main monument on the Mound Height, where the Raevsky battery was located, was installed in 1839. The ashes of General Bagration were reburied nearby. He was mortally wounded during the battle of Borodino and died a few days later.