Late in the night of 24 June, while attending a ball at General Bennigsen’s estate in Vilna (Vilnius, Lithuania), Tsar Alexander I of Russia received reports that the Emperor Napoleon had crossed the River Niemen into the territory of the Russian Empire at the head of a large army.
This post about my visit(s) to the Barclay de Tolly Mausoleum is based on an article I first wrote in 2017, hoping it would be published on a travel blog. There were no takers, and it has been languishing in my files ever since. It sees the light of day for the first time here on the 202nd anniversary of Barclay de Tolly's death.
People who know me well will be utterly unsurprised that I have included Barclay de Tolly on this list. Read on to discover why I consider him to be one of the greatest generals of the Napoleonic Wars.