Preobrazhensky Regiment March

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Preobrazhnesky March of Peter The Great, 1911

The March of the Preobrazhensky Life-Guard Regiment (Russian: Марш Лейб-гвардии Преображенского полка) is one of the most famous Russian military marches.[1] The Preobrazhensky Life-Guard Regiment was one of the oldest and most elite guard regiments of the Imperial Russian Army.

Usage history[edit]

Russian Empire[edit]

The march was used as an unofficial national anthem in imperial times.[2]

Modern Russia[edit]

March of the Preobrazhensky was often used in modern Russia, particularly in the annual Victory Day Parade for the trooping of the colours (Flag of Russia and Banner of Victory), notably at the 2005 Victory Day Parade. However as of 2010 The Sacred War has been played instead, both for the trooping of flags[3] and the inspection of troops.

It is not believed to have been officially used in the Soviet Union much, but it was played by Soviet military bands in concerts and, infrequently, during the inspection segment of parades.[4]

Other uses[edit]

Before World War I, the work was used as the presentation march (Prasentiermarsch) in several military formations in Prussia[1] Since 1964 is used as the slow march of the Royal Marines in the arrangement of Francis Vivian Dunn.[5][1]


Neither composer nor date of its writing are known. Judging from an old title of the march, "March of the Peter the Great", some conjecture that it was written in the time of Peter the Great. Some European scholars suggested Swedish authorship, but there is no evidence to that. In German sources the name of Ferdinand Haase (1788—1851) is mentioned. Haase indeed worked in Russia in the 19th century, and he wrote the second Marsch des Leib-Garde Preobraschenski Regiments.[1] Some English sources, when referring to the arrangement of the march for the Royal Marines, erroneously give the name of the composer as Donajowsky.[5] Vivian Dunn, and early 20th Century British copies of the march, mistakenly attributed it to an Ernest Donajowski, who was in fact in the sheet music publishing business, and was not a composer.[6]

Several lyrics are known for the march.[4]


  1. ^ a b c d "История марша Лейб-Гвардии Преображенского полка", reprinted from the article Агафонов Н., Петров Ф. "Марш лейб-гвардии Преображенского полка", Оркестр, 2007
  2. ^ "National Anthem | Russia's State Symbols". RIA Novosti. Archived from the original on 2009-02-04. Retrieved 2013-11-30.
  3. ^ March; Archived May 23, 2014, at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ a b "Russian Anthems museum". 2013-04-14. Archived from the original on 2013-07-03. Retrieved 2013-11-30.
  5. ^ a b "The Regimental Marches of Her Majesty's Royal Marines:A Life on the Ocean Wave Regimental Quick March". Archived from the original on 2013-12-03. Retrieved 2013-11-30.
  6. ^ Tony Dean, "Mistaken Attributions: The Preobrajensky March", IMMS UK (Founder) Branch Journal, No. 112, Summer 2017, p. 13 (retrieved January 31, 2020)