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Wilhelm von Freygang

Freygang, Wilhelm von, 1783—1849

Wilhelm von Freygang (Russ: Василий Иванович (вильгельм) Фрейганг) was born in St Petersburg, son of Ivan Freygang (d. 1815), a court physician. Though his education included military training, he principally developed in languages and the liberal arts in preparation for a diplomatic career. From 1802 to 1805 he studied at the University of Göttingen and, during the course of his stay in Germany, published two comedies: "Doctor Gall auf Reisen" (1805) and "Geniestreiche" (1806). Upon his return to Russia, he became secretary for foreign correspondence to General Count Buksgevdenom and later in 1806 performed the same role for General Michelson, chief of the Moldavan Army.

In 1808 he married Frederika Afanasyevna Kudryavskaya (1790—1863; q.v.) with whom he had two children, Andreas (1809-1880) and Katarina (1811-1812), before being posted to the Caucasus in 1811. The family set off in September via Moscow, arriving in Tiflis (present day Tblisi), Georgia, by November where they remained stationed. In April 1812, Wilhelm left his family in Tiflis and travelled to Persia as the Russian envoy charged with negotiating a peace treaty to the first Russo-Persian War with Prince Abbas Mirza. At Tabriz he met the English diplomat, Sir Gore Ouseley (1770-1844; ODNB), under whose offices the treaty of Gulistan was eventually orchestrated (13 October 1813), although Freygang himself had returned to Tiflis in August 1812 where he was reunited with his family. After the illness and death of his infant daughter at Georgiyevsk, Stavropol Krai, in September 1812, the family returned to Moscow, arriving in January 1813 to find the city in ruins in the aftermath of its siege by French forces. They returned to St Petersburg sometime in 1815 and thereafter Wilhelm had further diplomatic postings in the Netherlands and later Venice, where he died in 1849 during the Austrian siege of that city.

Texts

Title Published
Letters from the Caucasus and Georgia 1823