[From Tseikhgauz No. 13, 1/2001. Page 9.]
Contributed by A. Valkovich.
Dont be too smart
(Or, everyday life in the Horse Guards under Paul I.)
Orders for the Life-Guards Horse Regiment.
5 January 1800
1. Colonel Sablukov is to get it completely out of his head that he can dare speak to HIS IMPERIAL HIGHNESS THE TSAREVICH CONSTANTINE PAVLOVICH during training at Pavlovsk.
2. Colonel Yankovich is not to be too smart.
3. The gentlemen officers are to live in the regiment, as are all non-commissioned officers.
4. General and field and company-grade officers are to be every morning at the grooming [of the horses], and also at the issuing of oats and hay, and at roll call in the evening at 8 oclock.
5. Non-commissioned officers are not to have their own broadswords [palashi], but rather the big government-issue ones, and non-commissioned officers are to dress like privates, as are also officers, so that non-commissioned officers do not have an aristocratic appearance.
6. All non-commissioned officers are to groom their own horses
8. Gentlemen officers are to have the collars on their coats and kolety [heavy white cuirassier tunics M.C.] that are two fingers high.
9. The boots of gentlemen officers are to be two fingers higher than the knee, and the cloth boot stocks [shtibel manzhety] are to be one finger higher than the boots.
10. In each squadron there is to be one non-commissioned officer on duty at the stables and another at the barracks.
RGVIA, F. 3543, Op. 1, D. 97. L. 2-4.
Special bedrooms for married men.
(Or, soldiers life in barracks.)
From an order to the Life-Guards Horse Regiment.
16 November 1800
3. Personnel are to hang all their accouterments above their beds, but the new kolet and hats are to be in the armories [tseikhgauzy].
4. Married men are to be placed in special bedrooms apart from the single men, closer to the wooden stairs, and as they do not have enclosed beds [krovati s zagorodkami], they are to have curtains, if they wish.
5. There is to be extreme cleanliness in the barracks, food is not to be cooked in them, tubs and similar kitchen vessels are not to be kept by the men, but rather placed in the kitchens where food is prepared
7. Over the stalls are to be put labels like those the men have over their beds, with the name to whom it belongs written on it. Horse furniture, except for the new shabraques [chepraki], are to be at the stalls in the stables.
RGVIA, F. 3543, Op. 1, D. 97, L. 109.
Page 9: Non-commissioned officers of the Life-Guards Horse Regiment (2nd, 3rd, and 4th Squadrons), 1796-1801. Watercolor by P.I. Razumikhin, 1840s. (Istoricheskoe opisanie Ch. IX, No. 1168. VIMAIViVS.)
You cannot imagine those cruelties that Constantine and his Izmailov myrmidons inflicted on us. Nonetheless, the spirit of the regiment was not easy to break, and Constantines fear at just the mention of a court-martial many times restrained his ardor and uncalled-for severity. It is to my stubbornness and firmness during those trying times that I owe that influence in the regiment that I preserved until the end of my service in the Horse Guards, and which saved this noble regiment from any part in the base conspiracy which led to the murder of Emperor Paul. (N.A. Sablukovs notes in Tsareubiistvo 11 marta 1801. Zapiski uchastnikov i sovremennikov. St. Petersburg, 1907. Page 68.)
Translated by Mark Conrad, 2001.