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He distinguished himself in the passage of the BEREZINA
(November 26-29, 1812)

The seal presented here was found in 2013 by the archaeological excavation mission  BEREZINA2013  on the site of the passage of the Berezina by the Grand Army, during the retreat from Russia in 1812.

It was buried near an isba used as a bivouac site by several senior officers of the Grande Armée and probably belonged to one of them.


Who could identify the bearer of this seal  ?

Identification attempts:

These weapons could read like this  : "  From… to the azure fess charged with 3 stars of… and to the lion of… in a point erected on a terrace of…  ". The crest appears to be an animal's head. The shape of the shield is reminiscent of a Swiss or Germanic origin.


A proposed second reading2: "  Argent a fess Azure charged with three spur wheels Or, accompanied in base of a lion Or  ". In 1812, there seems to be only one order having an oval shape, which suggests the trail of a Hessian officer.


1: Franco Belarusian Mission as part of a collaboration between the Center for Napoleonic Studies and the Academy of Sciences of the Republic of Belarus

2: Philippe LAMARQUE, private communication, with thanks from the authors.

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