Today is the birthday of the late Russian military officer and explorer Nikolay Leontiev, born on this date on February 25, 1862.
Leontiev came to Ethiopia as part of a Russian diplomatic
mission to establish relations with Emperor Menelik, and Leontiev also played a significant role in the Battle of Adwa, helping arm and organize Ethiopian troops, delivering some 30,000 rifles.
Leontev also commanded a number of Russian advisers that fought alongside the Ethiopians in the battle itself.
Leontiev would be continue to play a significant role in Ethiopia, being credited for organizing the first battalion of the regular Ethiopian army in 1899.
Leontiev died in Paris in 1910, his body later interned in St. Petersburg.
(Source: Ethiopia: The Land, Its People, History and Culture ; Ethiopia Through Russian Eyes: Country in Transition, 1896-1898)