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Count Valerian Zubov, Jean-Louis Voille, 1791.

Younger brother of the last favorite of Catherine II. Reputed by contemporaries as “the handsomest man in Russia”. He was a successful military commander.

He headed the expedition to Persia projected by Platon Zubov. It’s aim was to conquer all Asia up to Tibet. But when the new emperor, Paul I, ascended the throne he secretly recalled all the commanders back  to Russia except commander-in-chief. He disliked his mother’s protégé and wanted his disgrace. Zubov was saved from captivity by ataman Platov, future hero of the 1812, who disobeyed emperor’s order.

The Persian campaign was the last one for Zubov.

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