State Tretyakov Gallery

Portrait of Christian Baur

Western Europe. After 1708

Christian Felix Bauer (Rodion Christianovitch Baur) (1667–1717)

Descendant of a famous Swedish noble family that had moved to Germany. In the beginning of the Northern War he defended Narva from the Russian army as Captain of Horse. In 1700 Bauer left the Swedish army and joined the Russian troops. Having gained the trust of the Russian tsar, he was sent to Augustus II as an ambassador. In 1701 he was bestowed the rank of Major, Colonel, and Commander of a Dragoon Regiment. In 1702 he became Major General, in 1706 – Lieutenant General, and in 1717 – General of the Cavalry. From the autumn of 1709 he was Cavalry Commander in the army of Field Marshal General Sheremetev. From October 1709 to June 1710 he took part in the siege of Riga, and subsequently in the conquest of Estonia. He took Pernov on August 14, 1710, and then the island of Ezel, forcing the Swedish garrison of Revel to surrender. During the last year of his life he commanded a division in Ukraine. Shortly before his death he was bestowed the rank of General of the Cavalry. He was awarded the Polish Order of the White Eagle, and received a diamond-encrusted badge with a portrait of Peter the Great for the Battle of Poltava. Bauer was married to Maria von Balmont (? – 1717).

Baur is depicted wearing a bouffant wig, a cuirass, and a miniature portrait of Peter the Great – an award received in 1709 for bravery displayed at the Battle of Poltava. Another version of this portrait is exhibited in the Kuskovo Estate Museum.

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