Hovhannes Toumanian image
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Born in February 19, 1869 / Died in March 23, 1923 / Armenia / Arabic


Hovhannes Tumanyan was an Armenian author, public activist who is considered by many to be the national poet of Armenia. His work was mostly written in tragic form, often centering on the harsh lives of villagers in the Lori region.


Hovhannes Tumanyan was born in February 19, 1869 in the village of Dsegh, which was part of the Tiflis Governorate of the Russian Empire, and now is located in Lori Province of Armenia. His father was an offspring of an Armenian princely family of Tumanyan (branch of the house of Mamikonian) and the village's priest and his mother an avid storyteller with a particular interest in fables, Tumanyan had incorporated many of the themes from his mother's stories and his father's preachings into his writings.

He was also a great master of quatrains:

As You take the blessings You gave me since life began,
I look to see how many are left till my race is run
Amazed am I: You have given so freely, with generous hand;
How much must I yet return till I merge with You into one?

Tumanyan is usually regarded in Armenian circles as "All-Armenian poet". He earned this title when the Catholicos of Armenia had ordered that Armenian refugees from the west not enter certain areas of his church and house, since he is considered to be "The Catholicos of all Armenians". Tumanyan in response decried that decision claiming that the refugees could seek relief in the Catholicos' quarters under order of "The Poet of all Armenians".

He created lyrics, fables, epic poems and translations into Armenian of Byron, Goethe and Pushkin.


Tumanyan's native town of Dsegh was renamed Tumanyan in his honor from 1938-1969.
In 1951, the village of Dzagidzor of Lori Province was renamed Tumanyan
There is a statue to Tumanyan in Freedom Square, Yerevan.
In Autumn of 2011 the government of Armenia purchased the house of Tumanyan in Tbilisi from its Georgian owner. The keys of that house are currently kept at the Writers Union of Armenia. A museum will presumably established in this house. ..