The beginning of the 19th century. During the Caucasian war, after the battle at the Chechen village of Dada-Yurt, completely destroyed and devastated the village, Russian soldiers found three-year-old. Gave it to the nursing Cossack Zakhar Medonosov, who served in the household of the commander of the Caucasian corps. The name of this man was the basis for the names of boy-Chechen. It was called Peter Zakharov. Until 1823, Peter was brought up at the Cossack Medonosov, and then took him to his well-known Russian General, hero of the war of 1812 Petr Nikolaevich Ermolov. Although Yermolov were seven of his children with great love, took care of the adopted son and did everything he could for the good of the upbringing and education of the young Chechens. At an early age the boy showed a talent for drawing. After retiring for health reasons in his resignation and he moved with his family to Moscow, Ermolov gave his adopted son-a Chechen training to a portrait painter Lev Volkov. And in 1833 after a brilliant sustained examination of Peter Zakharov was enrolled as a volunteer in the St. Petersburg Academy of arts. In accordance with the Charter of the Academy by its students could be the children of serfs and representatives of national minorities. Gifted children in these categories were enrolled, as it was formulated, "extra-curricular" students. However, the talent of Peter Zakharov was seen "significant progress" in the first year of teaching Peter Zakharov became a fellow of the Society for the encouragement of artists. The young artist has combined hard study with work, actively participated in exhibitions. A number of his works were awarded cash prizes and medals and are highly appreciated by the critics. The Academy sent him to study in Italy for further improvement of skill. However, this trip did not take place: Tsar Nicholas 1 Zakharov struck out from the list. Meanwhile, the training in Italy would be useful Zakharov and for creative growth and to maintain health: from childhood he suffered from tuberculosis. Another blow struck the young artist his first teacher of painting Leonid Volkov. Zakharov asked his daughter's hand, the young people loved each other. But the father not only did not allow the wedding, he sent the girl to relatives in the Caucasus, with instructions to "give her there to marry the first counter". In 1836 Peter Zakharov successfully graduated from the Academy of fine arts, received a certificate, the right of hereditary honorary citizen and the title of a free artist. In the period of study at the Academy "artist of the Chechens", as Zakharov signed his works, began to paint portraits of his great contemporaries. In his legacy – the gallery of portraits of outstanding personalities: the historian Granovsky, surgeon Inozemtsev, writer Muraviev. Poet Mikhail Lermontov was depicted in an overcoat draped over her shoulders. Contemporaries believed that the image created Zakharov, most accurately conveys the features and character of Lermontov. The skill of the portraitist Zakharova improved with each new work. He became a famous portraitist in Moscow and St. Petersburg. His clients were of noble Muscovites and Petersburgers. In 1842 Zakharov wrote his famous self-portrait, which until January 1995, was in Grozny at the Museum of fine arts. Although the artist had no living ties with the homeland, their inner connection with her, he said in this picture. He portrayed himself in the shaggy highland cattle hat in the cloak, with a gun slung over the shoulder, the clothes he never wore, but which, perhaps, missed. In 1846 Peter Zakharov died in the Prime of his strength and talent. He was only thirty years old. But he was already an academician of painting. The famous painter Karl Briullov regarded him second-in-command portraitist in Russia. Paintings, Peter Zakharov-Chechen entered the Treasury of Russian art of the 19th century. They are in major Russian museums - the Tretyakov gallery in Moscow, the Russian Museum in St. Petersburg and others.