Count Arkady Ivanovich Marcov (Mîđęîâ)

(b 6th January 1747 † 29th January 1827)

Order of A. Nevsky
Order of St. Vladimir
Personal service file and Amiers peace doc.   Lazarevskoye cemetery Map
Russian Imperial Ambassador to Paris; Acting Privy Counsellor; Knight of the Orders of St. Andrew and St. Vladimir 1st class; member of the Council of the Empire; unmarried; he had a natural daughter, Varvara, who received all the rights of a legitimate daughter. Buried at Lazarevskoye cemetery (grave #82). Original inscription including coat of arms and upper part of the grave missing. The grave of reddish marble surrounded by a metal fence with crosses, can be found close to V.A. Ratkov-Rozhnov monument.

Arkady Ivanovich, count (6th January 1747 29th January 1827): Acting Privy Councillor (since 1801) His origin is ancient noble family, from Novgorod, since end of XV century. He graduated from Moscow University. He studied there with well-known literary man D. I. Fonvizin. He was considered as one of the best students. After graduation, he got work at Foreign Affairs Collegiums. In 1767 he went to Paris for diplomatic service with the Russian ambassador, Baron O. M. Stackelberg. Later he was sent to Madrid together with his chief. In 1771-1772 he was in position of legation-secretary in the Russian Embassy in Warsaw. In 1774 he was assigned counselor of embassy in the Hague and after Turkey-Russian war he was sent to Constantinople as part of the Russian Embassy with Ambassador prince N. V. Repnin. In 1781 he was assigned Plenipotentiary Minister to assist prince D. A. Golitsyn in his special mission in the Hague to facilitate to establish reconciliation between the Netherlands and England. War between these countries had bad consequences for the international merchandise trade of Russia. In spite of the smart ability of Marcoff in diplomatic negotiations, he didn’t succeed in overcoming the counteractions of French diplomacy, so the mission failed. In 1783 he was assigned as Ambassador extraordinary and Ambassador Plenipotentiary in Stockholm. Immediately before his departure he was sent to Paris to assist prince I. S. Buryatinskiy to sign the peace between France and England. By this signed peace European counties recognized the independence of the USA. Marcoff went to Italy from Paris and then to Vienna and in 1785 went to Stockholm from S. Petersburg. He stayed there for a half year being actively involved in home affairs whilst keeping in touch with King’s malcontent noble society. As a consequence of his activity, when the King of Sweden declared the war on Russia, the Swedish army, located in Finland sent a letter to Empress of Russia, refusing to be at war with Russia.
In 1786, after returning to S. Petersburg, he was elected to be the third member of Foreign Affairs Collegiums. Soon after, he became the closest assistant of count A. A. Bezborodko, and later, under the patronage of Catherine the Great minion (favorite) P. A. Bezborodko, he was directly in charge for all foreign policy correspondence of the Empress Catherine the Great. His importance in foreign policy as independent and steadfast representative of Russia has always been a source of displeasure with him by foreigners. Morkov was awarded with Privy Council rank and was decorated with the Order of Alexander Nevsky, and Saint Vladimir of 1st degree. In 1796 he was elevated to the dignity of Count of the Holy Roman Empire, together with his brothers, by the Holy Roman Emperor Francis II. However, after accession to the throne of Emperor Paul 1st (November 1796) he was retired from service and ordered to leave St. Petersburg. He lived with his family in Podol province after retirement.
Soon after Alexander the 1st's (March 1801) coronation, he was assigned as acting Privy Counselor and sent to Paris as Ambassador. N. M. Karamzin wrote “Marcoff is well known as a master of cunning diplomatic knowledge”. During his work in Paris 1801-1803 Marcoff developed his sharp abhorrence to first Consul Napoleon Bonaparte. This abhorrence raised up to personal animosity to each other. In 1803 the first Consul made complains to Alexander 1st, and he recalled Marcoff from Paris. The Tsar granted him an order of Saint Andrey Pervozvanniy. Since this time, Marcoff lived in St. Petersburg without taking any diplomatic charges. Since 1820 up to his death he remained in position of State Council member. He died aged 80. Marcoff was buried in Lazarev cemetery of Alexandro-Nevslaya in St. Petersburg.
Prince Chartyriskiy described him as <<extremely skillful prototype and somehow last living recollection of diplomacy of old Catherine times. Count Marcoff did not always prove his reputation of a skillful diplomat. His thoughtlessness caused a terrible misunderstanding causing the break up of marriage between the King of Sweden and Grand Duchess. This hastened Catherine the Great's death. His face with small-pox scars constantly had an ironical and contemptuous expression. Round eyes and mouth with down corners resembling a tiger. His speech and manners resembled that of the Versailles court. In addition to this he was rather supercilious. His communications had little politeness, and piece of courtesy. He spoke perfect French, but his words were mainly caustic, sharp and unpleasant. No feelings could be found in his words. He enjoyed presents, but they were accepted only in the case he was sure, that the present would not touch his pride>>.
He was not married, but he had a “foster child” named Varvara, with the French actress Jusse? (Gyusse)? (died after 1831). She (Varvara Arkad’evna) inherited his title and estate. She married Prince S. Y. Golytsin.
<<Reference: B. Fedorchenko: Imperator House. Prominent Dignitaries. Olma Press Moscow 2001.>>

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