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A Day in Honor of Aghayan’s Legacy Celebrated in Bolnis-Khachen PDF Print E-mail

ghazaros aghayan 

On May 13, 2017, a traditional day in honor of Aghayan’s legacy was celebrated in the Bolnis-Khachen village, Bolnisi region. On the initiative of the “Vernatun” Armenian Writers’ Union of Georgia and with the support of Bolnis-Khachen Compatriotic Union, for over twenty years successively, in the village of Bolnis-Khachen, in the writer’s birthplace, people have gathered to solemnly commemorate the great Armenian teacher, famous writer and public figure, Ghazaros Aghayan.

This year the holiday celebration kicked off in Tbilisi and continued in the writer’s birthplace. On the initiative of the Hayartun Center of the Armenian Diocese in Georgia, the delegation of Armenians from Tbilisi visited the Tbilisi Pantheon of the Armenian Writers and Public Figures “Khojivank” and decorated with flowers the gravestone of Ghazaros Aghayan. Rev. Father Husik Harutyunyan, conducted the repose of the soul service.

The courtyard of the Ghazaros Aghayan House Museum in Bolnis-Khachen was crowded. In attendance were the official delegations from Tbilisi and Yerevan, Samtskhe-Javakheti and many Georgian regions. The occasion was honored with the presence of Georgian MPs Gogi Meshveliani and Ruslan Poghosyan, Tea Abramishvili, Head of Department of Cultural Affairs of the regional administration, and others. Students, teachers, parents, literature fans, Ghazaros Aghayan’s relatives and others visited the house museum. The event was made possible by the support from the Hayartun Center of the Armenian Diocese in Georgia, thanks to the financial assistance of Administration of the State Representative-Governor of Kvemo Kartli and Bolnisi Municipality.

Flowers were laid at the monument honoring Ghazaros Aghayan, which was erected in the yard. After that the guests paid a visit to the old house museum, viewed the things preserved there, felt a creative environment, which contributed to the formation of the writer’s literary approaches, pedagogical outlook, mass consciousness.

The President of the “Vernatun” Armenian Writers’ Union of Georgia, Gevorg Snkhchyan, who successively implements the holiday, gave opening remarks. Referring to the great writer’s biography and professional activity, he spoke about the invaluable contribution of the famous children’s book author and teacher to the Armenian child’s upbringing, of the multi-genre author - to the development of Armenian literature, of the public figure - to the establishment of Tumanyan’s “Vernatun”.

Acting Gamgebeli of Bolnisi Municipality, David Sherazadishvili, the head of the delegation of the Writers Union of Armenia, novelist Tigran Nikogosyan, the editor of the newspaper “Georgia” Van Bayburtyan, Head of the Cultural Department of the Armenian Diocese in Georgia, Levon Chidilyan, Founder of The Peace Foundation in Georgia, Giorgi Tumasyan, retired teacher, Norayr Baghdasaryan, the local public school principal, Mekhak Sargsyan, teacher Zoya Rostomyan, and others gave speeches, they paid tribute to Ghazaros Aghayan’s professional activity, stressed the Armenian-Georgian long-lasting friendly relations. The speakers highlighted that the Ghazaros Aghayan House Museum is in urgent need of repair. On the initiative of poet and translator Givi Shakhnazari, a list of five most popular Armenian authors including Hovhannes Tumanyan, Ghazaros Aghayan, Avetik Isahakyan, Derenik Demirchyan and Levon Shant, was presented, as well as their impact on Armenian literature.

A concert was hosted by teacher Roza Zohrabyan. Local public school students, led by teacher Hranush Khublaryan, adorned the celebration by literary montage. The event also included performances by the Taron Dance Ensemble, the Hayartun Center’s dhol and duduk classes, soloists Ani Hovhannisyan and Ani Torosyan, which brought festive mood to Bolnis-Khachen. They presented a wide variety of national and patriotic music and dance performances.

On that day, in Bolnis Khachen, the spirit of Aghayan’s legacy could be felt in the air, reminding people that the worthy son of the nation already for 177 years successively has lived in his birthplace, and his works have not lost its relevance and charm.

Ghazaros Aghayan was born on April 16, 1840 in Bolnis-Khachen village of Bolnisi region. He studied at the Nersisyan school in Tbilisi. In 1867 he devoted himself to literature and teaching. He wrote poems, epic poems, fairy tales for children, translated works of Pushkin and Krilov. He fought for democratization of education, defended a principle of popularized education. He has left the rich literary heritage, wrote Armenian textbooks and many articles on pedagogy.

At the end of the 18th century, 35 families moved to Khachen from Seidrshen village of Karabakh, and built here the Surb Astvatsatsin Church. In 1884, the parish school of the village was established adjunct to the church. In the Soviet era, the church was turned into a club. Currently, there is neither a church nor a prayer house in the village, in 1970 a new building was constructed for a school; about 190 students currently attend the school. The village has 500 households, and a population of more than 2000 residents.

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