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Siege of Akhulgo
Part of the Caucasian War
DateJune – August 1839
LocationAkhulgo, Dagestan
Thirdimamateflag.svg Caucasian Imamate  Russian Empire
Commanders and leaders
Imam Shamil Yevgeny Golovin
Pavel Grabbe
5,000 7,000
Casualties and losses


900 prisoners mostly women,children and old men

25 officers killed
487 soldiers killed
Total: 513 killed

91 officers wounded
1,631 men wounded
Total: 1,722 wounded

Heavy losses from disease

The Siege of Akhoulgo (also known as the Siege of Akhulgo) took place from June to August 1839 during the Caucasian War, when the Imperial Russian army (approx. 7,000 soldiers) under the command of Generals Yevgeny Golovin and Pavel Grabbe surrounded Imam Shamil and his followers, numbering about 5,000 men, in their mountain stronghold of Akhoulgo, nestled in the bend of the Andiyskoye Koysu River, about ten miles east of Gimry, Dagestan.

The Russians attacked Akhoulgo four times, but to no avail. The siege lasted eighty days (from June 12 to August 22) because the aul represented a very arduous mountain stronghold (one of the slopes of Mt. Akhoulgo had a 50-degree steepness and was about 100 meters in height). The Russians finally managed to break down the resistance of the mountaineers after bombarding the stronghold with heavy artillery and then undertook a fifth attack on the aul, securing a victory. The Russians suffered about 2,500 casualties in taking the stronghold, while the rebels were almost entirely slaughtered after extremely bitter fighting (which continued for another week after the capturing of Akhoulgo). Shamil and a small party of his closest followers, including some family, miraculously managed to escape to Chechnya through the Russian siege lines during the final days at Akhoulgo. Following his escape, he once again set about regaining his following and resisting the Russian occupation.

The participants of the siege of Akhoulgo were later awarded a special medal inscribed For Capturing of Akhoulgo ("За взятие штурмом Ахульго").


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