Sokolnicki studied in Warsaw's Corps of Cadets and fought in the Polish-Russian War of 1792 as well as the Kościuszko Uprising of 1794. In 1797 he presented the French Directory with a document entitled "Aperçu sur la Russie". This became known as the so-called "Testament of Peter the Great", which Napoleon Bonaparte used for anti-Russian propaganda purposes in 1812, and has been widely publicised since, although scholars have since established that the document is a forgery.
^Neumann, Iver B. "Europe's post-Cold War memory of Russia: cui bono?" in Memory and power in post-war Europe: studies in the presence of the past ed. Jan-Werner Müller. Cambridge University Press, 2002: p. 132
^McNally, Raymond T. "The Origins of Russophobia in France" in American Slavic and East European Review Vol. 17, No. 2 (Apr., 1958): pp. 173-189