Тульские слухи 1812 г.
The article is devoted to a private letter written at the end of November 1812 in Tula and preserved in a small archive of the Tula and Kaluga noblemen, the Ievlevs. Analysis of the document allows us to identify the author — Pavel Svechin, an official under the Tula governor, as well as the addressees of the letter — the landowner Alexander Prokofievich Ievlev and his son Peter. The name of the author of the addendum and others mentioned in the letter as well as the circumstances in which the epistolary text appeared, have been established. The reason for writing the letter was the news from the battlefields, which reached the provincial town and were passed on, probably to the estate where the addressees lived. However, the events of the Patriotic War were presented in a semi-fantastic form: the dates, names of commanders, and events were mixed up. The author of the letter does not seem to care much for the credibility or accuracy of the information conveyed. The only news that was transmitted without distortion concerns the bestowal of the Order of St. George, First Class, and the title of Prince of Smolensk upon Field Marshal Kutuzov. The article focuses on the reasons for the appearance of distortions and the mechanism of rumor formation; conclusions are drawn about what really worried the Tula landowners in the late autumn of 1812. The letter is published with a detailed commentary.