Prince Petr Ivanovich Bagration (Пётр Иванович Багратион) (1765 - September 12, 1812), a descendant of the Georgian Royal family of the Bagratids, served as a Russian general. He was born in 1765, in Kizlar (Dagestan, Northern Caucasus). His father was a Georgian Prince, Colonel Ivane Bagrationi. His brother Roman (Revaz) Bagration was also a general of the Russian army.
Bagration entered the Russian army in 1782, and served for some years in the Caucasus. He participated in the Siege of Ochakov (1788), and in the Polish campaign of 1794. His merits were recognized by Suvorov, whom he accompanied in the Italian and Swiss campaign of 1799, winning particular distinction by the capture of the town of Brescia.
In the wars of 1805 Bagration's achievements appeared even more brilliant. With a small rearguard he successfully resisted the repeated attacks of forces five times his own numbers at the Battle of Hollabrunn (1805), and though half his men fell, the retreat of the main army under Kutuzov was thereby secured. At Austerlitz (2 December 1805) Bagration fought against the left wing of the French army commanded by Murat and Lannes. He fought bravely and obstinately at the battles of Eylau (7 February 1807), Heilsberg (11 June 1807) and Friedland (14 June 1807).
In 1808, by a daring march across the frozen Gulf of Finland, Bagration captured the Åland Islands, and in 1809 he commanded against the Turks at the battles of Rassowa and Tataritza. In 1809 he was promoted to Full General ("General ot Infanterii").
In 1812 Bagration commanded the 2nd army of the West, and though defeated at Mogilev (23 July 1812), rejoined the main army under Barclay de Tolly, and led the left wing at the Battle of Borodino (7 September 1812), where he received a mortal wound. He died on September 12, in the village of Simi, which belonged to his aunt.
Tsar Nicholas I had a monument erected in his honour on the battlefield of Borodino. The general's remains were transferred to the place where he had fallen and remain there to this day (although the grave has been blown up in World War II, it has since then been restored).
Joseph Stalin chose Bagration as the name of the Soviet Union's June 22, 1944 successful offensive that defeated the German Army Group Centre and drove Nazi forces out of what is now Belarus. After the war, the Soviet Union annexed northern East Prussia, and the until-then German town of Preussisch Eylau – scene of the 1807 battle – was renamed Bagrationovsk in his memory.
Bagration is a minor character in Leo Tolstoy's novel War and Peace.
- "General Bagration (Documents and materials)", Leningrad, 1945 (in Russian)
- I.I. Rostunov. "P.I. Bagration" (a monograph), Moscow, 1947 (in Russian)
- T. LOmouri. "Petre Bagrationi" (a monograph), Tbilisi, 1946 (in Georgian)
- N. Nakashidze. "Hero of Borodino", Tbilisi, 1961 (in Georgian)
Genealogical account of Bagration's family (http://genealogy.euweb.cz/georgia/bagrat10.html)