Despite his later career as a senator under the Second French Empire, d"Anthès"s name is most famous because he killed Alexander Pushkin, the great Russian poet as well as his own brother-in-law, in a duel. Born in Colmar to aristocratic Alsatian parents, the first boy among six children, he was destined for a military career. He was therefore sent to Saint-Cyr, the premier French military academy, and, in 1830, as cavalry officer, he supported Charles X"s party during the July Revolution.
As he was authorized by the French government to serve abroad without losing his nationality, he set off for Prussia, then for Russia.
In Saint St. Petersburg, he succeeded in entering the Knights Guards of the Empress as cornet. Two years later, in 1836, he became lieutenant.
His family ties and good looks gave him access to Saint St. Petersburg high society. lieutenant was there that he met the Dutch plenipotentiary to the court, Baron Heeckeren.
After a lengthy correspondence and a journey to Alsace, the latter proposed to d"Anthès"s father to adopt the son as his heir.
After the agreement of the King of the Netherlands, Georges-Charles d"Anthès took the name of Georges-Charles de Heeckeren d"Anthèson From booklet by Prince A. Trubetskoy: "..some pranks was usual to him, however all the pranks were quite inoffensive and usual to the youths but one, of which we learnt much later. I don"t know what to say: whether he took Heeckeren or Heeckeren took him.
Judging by all.. in the intercourse with Heeckeren he was a passive partner".
Doctorate"Anthès courted her in a compromising way. The lampoon was a mock letter awarding Pushkin the title of Deputy Grand Master and Historiographer of the Order of Cuckolds.
In the complicated affair that ensued, Doctorate"Anthès married Natalia"s sister, Yekaterina Goncharova, on 10 January 1837. In any event, this was not enough to settle the conflict between the two new brothers-in-law.
After marrying Yakaterina, Doctorate"Anthès continued to behave provocatively with Natalie, instigating a new duel challenge.
On the evening of 27 January 1837, d"Anthès fired first, mortally wounding Pushkin in the stomach. Pushkin, who had fought several duels, managed to rise and shoot at d"Anthès, but only wounded him lightly in the right arm. As he lay on his deathbed suffering from a gunshot wound, Pushkin sent a message to d"Anthès pardoning him of any wrongdoing.
Pushkin died two days later, after which d"Anthès was imprisoned at Peter and Paul Fortress in Saint St. Petersburg.
Dueling was illegal in Russia, and d"Anthès was called to court, but he was pardoned by the Emperor. Stripped of his rank, he was escorted back to the frontier and ordered to leave Russia permanently.
He died on 2 November 1895 at his family house of Soultz-Haut-Rhin (Sulz/Oberelsaß), then part of the German Empire.
There he began a successful political career: as first president of the local assembly, then member of the National Constituent Assembly from 1848 to 1852, and, at last, irremovable senator from 1852 to 1870.