Today is famous Armenian poet, historian Ghevond Alishan's birthday
Armenian poet, philologist, historian, geography expert, translator, member of Mkhitaryan monastery of Venice since 1838
Ghevond Alishan was born on July 6, 1820 in Constantinople in a family of numismatic archeologist. Alishan received his preliminary education at local Chalkhyan School and then continued education at Mkhitaryans’ school in Venice. Later he worked at Rafaelyan College as a teacher (1841-1850 and 1866-1872), and then intendant (since 1848). He also worked at “Bazmavep” magazine as an editor (1849-1851), and in 1859-1861 he worked as a teacher at Muratyan College in Paris. From 1872 he entirely devoted himself to scientific research sphere. In 1886 he was laureate of Honorary Legion of French Academy. Alishan was doctor and honorary member of Ena Philosophy Academy; he was member of Italian and Russian scientific unions.
Alshian came to literary arena as a poet. Continuing literary traditions of Mkhitaryans he wrote over religious topics in grabar (old Armenian written language). In the works written in modern Armenian language he illustrated heroic scenes of historical past of Armenian nation. In 1847-1860 Alishan published series of verses and poems in “Bazmavep” magazine under pseudonym “Nahapet”. Those works were the highest point of his poetry.
Alishan tried his skills in aesthetic prose as well. He published historical aesthetic composition named “Yushikq hayrenyats hayots”. Alishan has done numerous translations knowing European and Asian a lot of languages. The collection named “Hayots ergnq ramkakanq” (1852) was one of the first works in Armenian scientific folklore research. Alishan jumped over classicism with his best compositions and paved a path for romantism becoming one of the founders of that genre in Armenian literature.
Alishan published his scientific articles in “Bazmavep” magazine since 1843. He placed topography of historical Armenia’s provinces and regions in the work called “Texagir Hayots Metsac” (1855) and gave their corresponding scientific geographical characteristics. Alishan had planned to write series of historical geographic compositions devoted to each of 15 provinces of historical Armenia, and all that information would have been included in 20-22 big volumes. The first work of mentioned series was “Shirak” (1881) where Alishan, who had never been to Armenia personally, conducted detailed analysis of history and geography of Shirak province. Then followed “Sisuan” (1885), “Ayrarat” (1890) and “Sisakan” (1893) compositions, which are non outdating monuments in the treasury house of armenology.
In 1895 he published “Haybusak or Vocabulary of Armenian Flora” composition, where he collected, categorized and scientifically characterized over 3400 plants and types of trees which grow in Armenia.
Alishan promoted development of sciences in Armenia owing to huge scientific heritage (over 45 volumes) left by him. Most of his works didn’t loose their modernity and even today they have cognitive value and significance of source.
Ghevond Alishan died on November 9, 1901 and engraved in St. Lazar Island of Venice.
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