Talk:Roman von Ungern-Sternberg

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I may have moved this while someone was puting the copyvio page in - sorry for any confusion --Henrygb 00:34, 1 Mar 2005 (UTC)

His name is Ungern von Sternberg[edit]

STOP moving this page to Ungern-Sternberg. That was NOT his name, even if it seems more proper. --Gene s 18:32, 17 November 2005 (UTC)

Funny then that the article claims this form of the name to be "incorrect"... --Latebird 09:35, 10 January 2006 (UTC)
Are you asking a question or making a statement? --Gene s 15:03, 10 January 2006 (UTC)
Sorry for being cryptic. The question is about the rationale that makes the current article name more appropriate than his actual birth name. My motivation for asking is that I'm considering to work on the german language article. All other languages currently seem to use "von Ungern-Sternberg", for whichever reasons. --Latebird 17:52, 10 January 2006 (UTC)
He used "Ungern von Sternberg" throughout his adulthood and he became known under this name. The assumed name is commonly used by the wiki if it's the name one is known under. For example, see Marilyn Monroe (Norma Jeane Mortenson), Kirk Douglas (Issur Demsky), Vladimir Lenin (Ulyanov). I guess the other languages use "von Ungern-Sternberg" because it's more correct grammatically. --Gene s 10:37, 12 January 2006 (UTC)

place of birth[edit]

User:3_Löwi: Could you please produce source for born in in Graz, Austria ..., and raised in Tallinn (Reval), Estonia. All sources that I can find point to Dago, Estonia. --Gene s 18:45, 17 November 2005 (UTC) Any information about White Army money and treasures of Urga and Gandaan???Still not found!

'Eesti Entsüklopoeedia' kd X gives Graz. Constanz - Talk 11:04, 14 January 2006 (UTC)

Copyright of Images[edit]

Can it be shown that the two images were published in the USSR before 1973? If so, then it would be a good idea to move them to the Commons using the respective public domain tag, so that all language versions can use them without the need to store an extra copy. --Latebird 14:29, 12 January 2006 (UTC)

Popular Culture[edit]

Should we add a reference to Pelevin's Chapaev and Pustota (in Englihs, The Clay Machine-Gun)? Cema 03:22, 13 March 2006 (UTC)

The nickname "Bloody Baron" will also make people wonder about the ghost of the same name in JKR. There does not appear to be any other connection. 16:09, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

Also, why is there not a movie about him, starring Johnny Depp?Zemlod (talk) 16:09, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

Because his life is altogether not Tim Burton stuff, but rather Tarantino? (talk) 19:36, 14 October 2016 (UTC)


Is the material here accurate? DS 21:29, 21 April 2006 (UTC)

It's called a "fictional essay" right there... --Latebird 22:15, 21 April 2006 (UTC)
... in a context that implies that it is not fiction. The other "fictional essays" are about real people and real events, so... DS 03:19, 22 April 2006 (UTC)
Key players and events are indeed taken from actual history. Most of the details seem to be fictional, though, some possibly taken from popular legends. Quite interesting to read but clearly not a useful source for Wikipedia. --Latebird 10:15, 22 April 2006 (UTC)
Thank you; that's what I was concerned about. DS 15:29, 22 April 2006 (UTC)

Story of his capture[edit]

I read a story about how he was captured. It was written by Byambyn Rinchen (or Rinchen Byambayev) in 1967.08.04, N32 of the Mongolian newspaper "Utga zohiol urlag" (Literature and art). In the article, he remembers that when he was a young secretary to the minister of border affairs, in July 1921, he and his minister went to visit a (mongolian) prisoner in a red army prison, who was an old friend of the minister, to inform him that he will be soon transferred to the Mongolian side. The prisoner's name was "Bishrelt gun Sundui" and he was confined in the same room that the Baron was staying. Baron knew some Mongolian language, and under the Baron's presence few feet away, Sundui talked about how he was a leader of the mongolian soldiers in the Baron's army, and after throwing the Chinese gomindan army how Baron took them deep into Russian territory and how it was meaningless to them to fight there. He said that they were so frustrated and homesick that they were waiting for the first convenient moment to capture the Baron and bring him to the Red Army. One night a mongolian soldier shot the Baron from outside of his tent, but missed and the Baron immediately turned off his candle. Then the Baron bacame extra cautious that he never took his right hand off of his gun in his pocket. Once the Baron took Sundui and a few soldiers to go to Mongolia. During a short picnic two soldiers grabbed the Baron's two arms and captured him the moment his right hand was away from his gun to light up his cigaret. The Barons' Russian soldiers were observing this but nobody did anything probably because they were defeated by the Red Army many times and already kind of have given up.

Ricnhen described the Baron as tall, with broad shoulders but flat chest, a bit small head and very "evil" kind of eyes.

Temur 18:47, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

Black Baron?[edit]

The this-day-in-history box for March 13 refers to him as “The Black Baron,” which has no support on this page. Which is wrong? —crism 00:17, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

the Black Baron was Wrangel. Thanks. Will be fixed. `'mikka 01:48, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

About the picture[edit]

On the main picture the Baron wears a deel, Mongolian national costume. Normally a deel has the opening in the right hand side, which appears on this picture in his left side. so I suspect the picture is a mirror image. Also the medal appears in the right side, which I think people usually put on their left side. If you see the picture before execution, the deel opening is in the right side.

Temur 19:00, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

Unsourced antisemitism[edit]

Could anyone add sources for the baron's alleged antisemitism? There is a section describing it in this article, but with no references. On the other hand, in Ossendowski's Beasts, Men and Gods, the baron mentioned his Jewish spies and a Jewish commander of his right flank. Of course, that might be just Ossendowski's propaganda. It would be nice to have reliable sources supporting one or the other side. Tankred 02:52, 31 August 2007 (UTC)

No idea if it is what you had in mind, but secondary sources that explicitely say that he killed all of Urga's Jews he could lay hand on include C.R. Bawden's Modern History of Mongolia, London 1968, p.232, and IIRC Owen Lattimore's Nomaden und Komissare (transl. of Nomads and Comissioners), ca. 1962, don't remember the page but at least the German version had an index. Primary sources could be Frans August Larson, Duke of Mongolia, Boston 1930, p.133, or Ladislaus Forbath, The New Mongolia, London 1936 (I think), p.164 ff. Yaan (talk) 19:44, 6 November 2008 (UTC)
Palmer's recent book The Bloody White Baron (2008) has a lot about Ungern-Sternberg's anti-Semitism. Colin4C (talk) 10:47, 7 November 2008 (UTC) But problem with Palmer's book is that he lacks many credible sources, he makes Ungern to be some kind of Vlad Dracula, and especially he has not read Kamil Gizycki's fist hand account of the wild years 1920-21, a memoir published in 1929 in Poland and assessed by the Polish historians as much more trustworthy then Ossendowski's story on Ungern.

Full German name[edit]

His full name in German was "Robert Nickolaus Maximillian von Ungern-Sternberg", not "Roman Friederich Nickolaus". (talk) 21:25, 6 January 2008 (UTC)

Please putting this page back to say that von Sternberg did not fight in the Russo-Japanese war. I have a reliable source ( the work "Monsters: History's most evil men & women" by noted historian Simon Sebag Montfoire) that will verify this. Anyway, if you look at the dates, this war began in 1904 and von Sternberg was 18 at the time, it is obvious that he served in this war. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Theeditizingeditor (talkcontribs) 15:37, 17 June 2010 (UTC)


Can we please agree that the name of this Chinese settlement is Chinese and means, as stated in a number of sources, literally 'trade town' (買 = 'buy', 賣='sell', 買賣='trade', 城='town')? Yaan (talk) 03:16, 12 January 2011 (UTC)

I agree. But you can also include the Mongolian form indicating it as probable derivative from Chinese.---SK91.76.18.196 (talk)

If you can show that there is the Mongolian name - this, this or this (on page x) source all do not use 'Наймаачин'. Yaan (talk) 13:34, 12 January 2011 (UTC)

Маймачен is not a Mongolian but Russified name, something like Урга. Mongols use 'наймаачин' as Mongolian word for Russian 'маймаачин': see Монгол орос дэлгэрэнгуй их толь, II боть, Москва, 2001, p.313.---SK91.76.18.196 (talk) 14:06, 12 January 2011 (UTC)

mad monster or just leader?[edit]

There is an unconsistancy in this article. While the baron ruled over Duria, it describes "extreme cruelty" as part of his rule, but as leader of Mongolia, it describes him as a great leader and liberator. Did this tyranny in his personality just vanish? Everything else I've read on the man (this includes works by Simon Sebag Montefoire and other noted historians) describes his Mongolia as a place of torture, mass murder, pillaging and other attrocities. I even read a quote from a refugee fleeing Mongolia, saying "even death is better that the Baron". This person wasn't fleeing from sanitation and tolerance. I understand that the article has to be unbiased, but that's seeing it all through rose coloured glasses. He wasn't called the "mad baron" for nothing. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:53, 27 January 2011 (UTC)

Completely agree. Those roughly contemporary reports that I have read (Haslund, Andrews) write about, more or less, blood flowing in the streets. While in both of those cases it's just hearsay, both authors definitely do not fall into the Soviet sympathizer camps. And neither of the two seems to have been as thoroughly debunked as Ossendowski. Yaan (talk) 17:58, 28 January 2011 (UTC)

There are many conflicting accounts on the matter, it is agreed he was famously ruthless in his punishments for transgressing his rules, though there certainly was not blood flowing in the streets in Mongolia apart from when he was capturing said streets from the Chinese, for he needed the Mongolians on side. I do recall accounts of him hanging looters, but at the same time shooting people who would not give him needed supplies. I Cannot speak for Siberia, it is indeed quite possible there, the punishments for communism and communist sympathies or just disobedience became very severe as the war developed and he had more free reign. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Cerdic1096 (talkcontribs) 00:50, 10 December 2017 (UTC)

Roman as Mahākāla avatar?[edit]

I thought I recalled in some earlier edit here seeing mention that Roman was declared a Mahākāla avatar ("protector of the dharma") by one of the Dalai Lamas. However, I'm not finding anything about that on GoogleBooks except a wiki-mirror publication. Was this data removed for a reason, was it shown to be incorrect? Even setting aside wikimirrors, there seems to be some outside references to this online, though not WP:RS. If true, it's a really interesting fact that should be there. If not, it'd be nice to have the debunk here on the Talk page for folks like me who recall that earlier bit, or see it in the many wikimirrors. MatthewVanitas (talk) 18:23, 13 February 2011 (UTC)

This discussed in detail in the Russian book by Kuzmin (2011). Only few White Russian officers mentioned him as Mahakala in their memoirs, no more. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:43, 25 March 2011 (UTC)

Losses in Mongolia[edit]

  • Please, don't use irrelevant or faked information. It will be always removed.

Palmer's book is not science but a non-fiction. However, Palmer (2009) wrote only on killing Jews in Urga and stated that "A few Jews were saved" (page 157). Kuzmin's book is scholarly academic source with exact quotations of primary and secondary sources and it is prioritized. Palmer quoted his earlier books. It contains following statistical data: "during the whole revolution of 1921, Mongolia lost 2,000 persons, which included the losses of Mongols from the both sides of the conflict (fifty-fifty). Human losses in Mongolia for the periods of the Chinese occupation in 1919–1920 made 17,000 persons (up to 2,000 killed, others died of famine); revolts against the Reds in 1932 – ca. 3,000; communist repressions in 1928–1952 – 50,000 (by other data, up to 100,000), among whom 20,000 killed, 30,000 died in prisons and camps" (Erlikhman, V. 2004. Poteri Narodonaseleniya v XX veke: Spravochnik [Losses of Populations in the 20th Century: Reference Book]. Moscow: Russkaya Panorama, quoted on page 356). In Urga Ungern's men killed from 38 to 40 Jews (Kuzmin, 2010, pages 415 and 417, see lists on pages 410-413). (talk) 18:28, 12 February 2012 (UTC)

That is one OPINION, potentially revisionist. We cannot give weight to only this one, that would be against the rules here.--Galassi (talk) 03:08, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Wrong. This is scholarly monograph generalizing more than 700 sources and not revisionist. Opinion is inserted by you. John Major's popular guides as 'Land & people of Mongolia', 'Land & people of China', '...of Brunei & Malaysia' are not reliable sources in history. Don't insert also faked phrase 'from Palmer' andt POV. Don't violate rules. First discuss here. (talk) 06:18, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I agree. "History of Baron Ungern" is a scholarly book recognized by researchers. KMK is academic publisher well-known in Russia. Relevance of guides and popular books is certainly lower. Galassi seems to be ignorant in Mongolian history. (talk) 09:36, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
It is against the rules to claim anything as fact. You may mention that "Kuzmin claims that etc."--Galassi (talk) 12:50, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
It is against the rules to insert irrelevant sources. Your phrase is not correct because Kuzmin quotes other sources. Probably, description of these sources may be also included. It may be formulated here by you or by, depending on who has that book in hands. (talk) 13:50, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Yes, I have. Kuzmin quoted Erlikhman for total losses in Mongolia. Erlikhman's special reference book on human losses by countries and times. Number of Jews murdered by Ungern's men in Urga totaled 38 by the list (quoted earlier) compiled by his enemy B.N. Volkov (Hoower Archive is quoted) - page 417. K.P. Albertsen, eyewitness, indicated 40 killed Jews (quoted from Zlatkin I.Ya. Accounts of new and newest history of Mongolia. Moscow, Nauka publisher house, 1957, page 167) - page 415. (talk) 17:46, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Comment: I believe it should not be that hard to find academic sources stating that Baron Ungern killed nearly all Jews in Urga. The numbers cited by the IPs above don't really contradict that. I also believe this is relevant for the article.

On the other hand, the claim that 80000 Mongolians were killed during that era (even if we extend it to, say, 1919-1924 and allow a large error margin) looks really exceptional. My only explanation is that it either is a printing error or derived from inconsistent population estimates. Mongolia at the time had roughly 600000 inhabitants. 80000 people killed would be around 13% of the population, about the same share of population that the Soviet Union lost in WWII!

Yaan (talk) 20:05, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Details of military ranks[edit]

  • Ungern received the rank of Major General in the beginning of Civil War in Transbaikalia, so almost whole that time he was Major General but not Yesaul. He received the rank of Lieutenant General for capture of Urga, i.e. soon after his appearance in Mongolia. The start of Mongolian Revolution of 1921 officially considered from the capture of Maimacheng by Suukhbaatar in March 1921. The war in Mongolia with Chinese troops and then with Russian and Mongol Red troops was longer, from October 1921 to 1922. Ungern participated in this war and not in Mongolian Revolution.NikStg (talk) 06:37, 18 April 2012 (UTC)

Name inconsistency[edit]

It's listed as Roman Nikolai Maximilian von Ungern-Sternberg and Roman Fyodorovich von Ungern-Sternberg. Which is correct? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:45, 7 September 2012 (UTC)

Problem of validity of Palmer's book as a source[edit]

Palmer's book "The Bloody White Baron: The Extraordinary Story of the Russian Nobleman Who Became the Last Khan of Mongolia" has been heavily used as a source material in writing this article.

The mentioned book, is provocative, sensationalist piece of pop literature that has nothing to do with verifiable, accurate historical sources. The title of the book alone should be counter-indication for it's inclusion in references.

From this book are sourced numerous claims in the article which vary from simply incorrect, to completely outrageous. Among them are supposed Baron's allegiance to a "volkisch" idea which is completely false and deduced simply from Baron's rants and statements which have nothing to do with any such idea. Baron Ungern in particular didn't devote much time to moving withing German-Baltic circles.

Then follow claims that Baron "ardently" hated Slavs and considered them inferior which is completely outrageous, false claim. Baron's closest friends and associates were Slavic, and during his dictatorship in Mongolia he employed many Slavs in his posts.

Then follow his overblown depiction of Baron's anti-semitism which author of the book portrayed as his chief ideological motor, which is another completely outrageous construction. The book litterally portrayed Baron Ungern as "foreshadow" of the Nazis.

I strongly urge not only these references bee triple checked, but i suggest that it should be completely removed as a source material, and all claims drawn from the book deleted or altered, unless verified by another, reliable source.

This is author's description of his book, supposed neutral source

"In the history of the modern world, there have been few characters more sinister, sadistic, and deeply demented than Baron Ungern-Sternberg. An anti-Semitic fanatic whose penchant for Eastern mysticism and hatred of communists foreshadowed the Nazi scourge that would soon overtake Europe, Ungern- Sternberg conquered Mongolia in 1919 with a ragtag force of White Russians, Siberians, Japanese, and native Mongolians. In The Bloody White Baron, historian and travel writer James Palmer vividly re-creates Ungern-Sternberg's spiral into ever-darker obsessions, while also providing a rare look at the religion and culture of the unfortunate Mongolians he briefly ruled." — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:11, 12 June 2016 (UTC)

Agreed. Will do more research into primary resources in order to come to a better satisfactory page. The Makioka Brother (talk) 05:59, 12 December 2016 (UTC)