Sergei Petrovich Troubetzkoy
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|Sergei Petrovich Trubetskoy|
29 August 1790|
|Died||22 November 1860
Prince Sergei Petrovich Trubetskoy (Russian: Серге́й Петро́вич Трубецко́й; 29 August 1790 – 22 November 1860) was one of the organizers of the Decembrist movement. Close to Nikita Mikhailovich Muravyov in his views, he was declared the group's leader on the eve of the December 26 uprising in 1825 but failed to appear, and instead sought refuge in the Austrian embassy.
Trubetskoy was born in the noble Trubetskoy family. His father was Prince Pyotr Sergeyevich Troubetzkoy (1760–1817). His mother, Daria (d. 1796), was a daughter of the Georgian prince Alexander Bakarovich Gruzinsky.
Troubetzkoy received home education, since 1806 he was attending lectures in the Moscow University. In 1808 he entered Leib Guards Semyonovsky regiment. As a military, he participated in all significant battles of Sixth Coalition campaign in 1812-1814 including battle of Borodino, battle of Maloyaroslavets, Battle of Lützen, battle of Bautzen and battle of Kulm and received many orders. In the battle of Leipzig he was badly wounded. After the war he continued military service and in 1821 he was promoted to Colonel.
After the war Trubetskoy became a Freemason, member of the Lodge of the Three Virtues. He was among the founders of the first proto-Decembrists societies - the Union of Salvation (1816) and later the Union of Prosperity (1819). The aim of the two unions which were largely based on masonry was gradual improvement of the Russian Empire. However, it has not included yet future tenets of the Decembrists, namely complete abolishment of the serfdom, introduction of constitution and constitutionally secured liberties, abolishment of privileges of upper estates of the realm. In 1819 Trubetskoy had to go abroad for treatment. When he returned in 1821 he found out that the Union had already ceased to exist. Trubetskoy was one of the founders and leaders of the Northern Society. Unlike some other Decembrists who adhered to revolution, execution of the tsar and establishment of republic (e.g. Ryleev and Pestel), Trubestkoy advocated Constitutional monarchy. He was elected "dictator" but he did not come to the Senate Square, most probably because he was sure that the revolt was bound to fail. He was arrested the next day at the apartments of envoy of Austria-Hungary Lebzeltern who was his relative.
Katorga and exile
Trubetskoy was sentenced to death but the sentence was changed to katorga for life in Nerchinsk coal mines. Trubetskoy's wife Ekaterina Laval went to exile with him. Her feat (she voluntarily renounced all wealth and privileges and subjected herself to hard life in katorga) was subject of famous poem by Nekrasov. In 1839 he was allowed to live in exile in Irkutsk guberniya. In 1854 his wife died . In 1856 he along with other survived Decembrists was granted amnesty, given back his title and was able to return to Moscow. He wrote memoires which were published for the first time in 1863 by Alexander Herzen in London.