Russia returns remains of Napoleon-era general to France

Excavations at Charles-Etienne Gudin's presumed burial site © Russian Academy of Sciences Archeology Institute, press service

A TASS correspondent reported the remains of Napoleon’s close friend General Charles-Etienne Gudin, killed during the Russian campaign of 1812, were delivered to Paris on Tuesday in the run-up to France’s national holiday. France

The ceremony in Le Bourget Airport was attended by the general’s descendants, French government members and military commanders, as well as Russian diplomats.

According to the TASS, the general will be honored on December 2, during a ceremony at Hotel des Invalides, a complex of museums and monuments devoted to the military history of France.

Cesar Charles Etienne Gudin de la Sablonniere was born on February 13, 1768. He studied at the Brienne military school (France) together with Napoleon Bonaparte.

During the Russian campaign of 1812 he was hit by a cannonball in the battle of Valutino near Smolensk and lost both legs.

Gudin was evacuated to Smolensk, where he died a short while later. His grave was considered to have been lost.

In November 2019, DNA tests in France confirmed that Gudin’s remains were unearthed in the process of archeological excavation near Smolensk. France

Archeological excavation in Smolensk has been underway since May 2019 under the aegis of the Franco-Russian forum Trianon Dialogue, founded at the initiative of Russian President Vladimir Putin and French President Emmanuel Macron.

The expedition’s organizers are the Foundation for the Development of Russian-French Historical Initiatives, the Russian Academy of Sciences, and the Russian Military-Historical Society.

In July 2019, General Gudin’s direct descendant, Alberic d’Orleans, informed that he had asked the French authorities for reburying the remains of his ancestor at the Hotel des Invalides in Paris, which alongside museums contains a cemetery of senior military officers and Napoleon’s tomb. France


Source: TASS
Image source: Russian Academy of Sciences Archeology Institute, press service-TASS