Friedrich Graf Kleist von Nollendorf

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Friedrich Graf Kleist von Nollendorf
Hermann Scherenberg-Friedrich Graf Kleist von Nollendorf.jpg
Friedrich von Kleist, woodcut by Hermann Scherenberg, 1863
Born(1762-04-09)9 April 1762
Berlin, Kingdom of Prussia,
Holy Roman Empire
Died17 February 1823(1823-02-17) (aged 60)
Berlin, Kingdom of Prussia,
German Confederation
AllegianceKingdom of Prussia
Service/branchRoyal Prussian Army
RankGeneralfeldmarschall ("Field marshal")
Commands heldNorth German Corps
Graf Kleist von Nollendorf at the base of the monument to Frederick William III in Cologne

Friedrich Emil Ferdinand Heinrich Graf Kleist von Nollendorf (9 April 1762 – 17 February 1823), born and died in Berlin, was a Prussian field marshal and a member of the old junker family von Kleist.[1]


Kleist entered the Prussian Army in 1778 and served in the War of the Bavarian Succession and the French Revolutionary Wars. By 1799, Kleist had been promoted to major and was put in command of a battalion of grenadiers.

Kleist served in the Napoleonic Wars and fought at Jena. In 1807 he went on extended leave but by 1808 he was put in command of an infantry brigade and the next year he was made commandant of Berlin. During the War of Liberation he was given a corps with which he fought in the battles of Kulm and Leipzig. In 1814, he was given the title Count of Nollendorf (from the German name of the town Nakléřov, now part of Petrovice in the Czech Republic) for his decisive role in this battle.

After Leipzig, Kleist blockaded the fortress of Erfurt, bringing about its surrender after which, in early 1814, he marched his troops into France, where his corps was attached to Blücher's army. He then fought in the battle of Laon and in the attack on Paris. At the end of the war Kleist was promoted to the rank of General der Infanterie. During the Hundred Days, Kleist was given command of a Prussian corps (the North German Corps) which was to operate independently from Blücher's Army of the Lower Rhine; he was therefore not involved in the battles of Ligny and Waterloo.

Two years before his death he was promoted to the rank of Generalfeldmarschall ("field marshal").


  1. ^ Regarding personal names: Graf was a title before 1919, but now is regarded as part of the surname. It is translated as Count. Before the August 1919 abolition of nobility as a legal class, titles preceded the full name when given (Graf Helmuth James von Moltke). Since 1919, these titles, along with any nobiliary prefix (von, zu, etc.), can be used, but are regarded as a dependent part of the surname, and thus come after any given names (Helmuth James Graf von Moltke). Titles and all dependent parts of surnames are ignored in alphabetical sorting. The feminine form is Gräfin.


  • Meerheimb, F. von (1882), "Kleist von Nollendorf, Friedrich", Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie (ADB) (in German), vol. 16, Leipzig: Duncker & Humblot, pp. 124–127
  • Günter Richter (1980), "Kleist von Nollendorf, Friedrich Heinrich Graf", Neue Deutsche Biographie (in German), vol. 12, Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, pp. 27–28; (full text online)

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