Daniel Varoujan

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Daniel Varoujan
Daniel Varujan.png
Born (1884-04-20)April 20, 1884
Brgnik village, Vilayet of Sebastia, Ottoman Empire
Died August 26, 1915(1915-08-26)
Çankırı, Vilayet of Kastamonu, Ottoman Empire[1]
Occupation poet
Nationality Armenian
Education University of Ghent
Spouse(s) Araksi Varujan

Daniel Varoujan (Armenian: Դանիէլ Վարուժան, April 20, 1884 – August 26, 1915) is one of the major Armenian poets of the early 20th century. At the age of 31, when he was blossoming to become a poet of international stature, he was deported and murdered by the Young Turk government, as part of the officially planned and executed Armenian Genocide.[2][3]

Life and education[edit]

Varoujan was born Daniel Tchiboukkearian (Դանիէլ Չպուքքարեան)[4] in the Prknig village of Sivas, Turkey. After attending the local school, he was sent in 1896, the year of the Hamidian massacres, to Istanbul, where he attended the Mkhitarian school. He then continued his education at Mourad-Rafaelian school of Venice, and in 1905 entered the Ghent University in Belgium, where he followed courses in literature, sociology and economics. In 1909 he returned to his village where he taught for three years. After his marriage with Araksi Varoujan in 1912, he became the principal of St. Gregory The Illuminator School in Istanbul.

Mehian literary group[edit]

In 1914, he established the "Mehian literary group and magazine with Gostan Zarian, Hagop Oshagan, Aharon Parseghian and Kegham Parseghian. The purpose of this movement was to start an Armenian Renaissance, to wake the nation up from centuries of slavery and darkness, to reconnect it to its great Pre-Christian past ("Mehian" means "Temple"), and to encourage it to stand up on its own feet and not tolerate any tyranny, whether from its own corrupt leadership or the Turkish government. The fundamental ideology of Mehian was expressed as:

"We announce the worship and the expression of the Armenian spirit, because the Armenian spirit is alive, but appears occasionally. We say: Without the Armenian spirit there is no Armenian literature and Armenian artist. Every true artist expresses only his own race's spirit...We say: External factors, acquired customs, foreign influences, diverted and deformed emotions have dominated the Armenian spirit, but were unable to assimilate it."


An eyewitness has narrated the torture and martyrdom of Varoujan, Roupen Sevag (another great Armenian writer,doctor), and three others. After being arrested and jailed, they were told that they were being taken to a village. On the way, a Turkish official and his assistant, accompanied by five "policemen" who were armed to the teeth, stopped the convoy. After robbing the five prisoners, the first two who were in charge left and ordered the other five to take them away. After taking them to the woods, they attacked the prisoners, took off their clothes until all of them were completely naked. Then they tied them one by one to the trees and started cutting them slowly with their knives. Their screams could be heard from a long distance where this eyewitness was hiding.

One of his great works The Song of the Bread (Հացին երգը) a fifty page collection of poems, was confiscated during the genocide. It was later published posthumously in 1921. The poems celebrate the simple majesty of village agricultural life, celebrating the Armenian peasant of Anatolia.

More than anyone else of their time, Siamanto and Varoujan verbalized the hopes of the Armenians around the start of the 20th century. Using legends, old epics, and pagan history at the springboard and allegory for their aspirations, they waited for deliverance from oppression and the rebirth in Armenian arts.


Varoujan has produced four great volumes of poetry:

  • Shivers (Սարսուռներ, 1906)
  • The Heart of the Race (Ցեղին սիրտը, 1909)
  • Pagan Songs (Հեթանոս երգեր, 1912)
  • The Song of the Bread (Հացին երգը, 1921).

The last book was an unfinished manuscript which was saved by bribing Turkish officials.

Writings by Varoujan:

  • Varoujan, Daniel. Le chant du pain (Marseilles: Editions Parentheses, 1990).
  • Varujan, Daniel. Il canto del pane (Milan: Edizioni Angelo Guerini e Associati, 1992).
  • Varuzhan, Daniel. Արծիւներու կարավանը (Erevan: "Hayastan" Hratarakchutyun, 1969).
  • Բանաստեղծական երկեր (Antelias: Tp. Kilikioy Katoghikosutean, 1986).
  • Բանաստեղծություններ (Erevan: Haypethrat, 1955).
  • Ձօն (Erevan: Hayastan Hratarakchutyun, 1975).
  • Երկեր (Erevan: "Hayastan," 1969).
  • Երկեր (Jerusalem: "Haralez Hratarakchutiwn," 1973).
  • Երկեր (Erevan: "Sovetakan Grogh" Hratarakchutyun, 1984).
  • Երկերի լիակատար ժողովածու երեք հատորով (Erevan: Haykakan SSH GA Hratarakchutyun, 1986, 1987).
  • Հարճը (Erevan: Haypethrat, 1946).
  • Հարճը (Beirut: Tparan Etvan, 1952).
  • Հարճը (Erevan: "Sovetakan Grogh" Hratarakchutyun, 1977).
  • Հատընտիր (Istanbul: Grakan Akumb-Zhamanak Gortsaktsutiwn, 1994).
  • Հատընտիրներ (Istanbul: Zhamanak, 1994).
  • Հացին երգը (Jerusalem: Tparan Srbots Hakobeants, 1950).
  • Հացին երգը (Erevan: Haypethrat, 1964).
  • Հացին երգը (Constantinople: O. Arzuman, 1921).
  • Հեթանոս երգեր (Ghalatia [Constantinople]: Tpagrutiwn "Shant," 1912).
  • Հեթանոս երգեր (Jerusalem: Tparan Srbots Hakobeants, 1953).
  • Հեթանոս երգեր. Հացին երգը. հատուածներ (Venice-S. Ghazar: Mkhitarean hratarakutiwn, 1981).
  • Նամականի (Erevan: Haypethrat, 1965).
  • Poemes Varoujean (Beirut: Impr. Hamaskaine, 1972).
  • Սարսուռներ ([Jerusalem:] Srbots Hakobeants, 1950).
  • Սարսուռներ. Ցեղին սիրտը. հատուածներ (Venice-S. Ghazar: Mkhitarean hratarakutiwn, 1981).
  • Stikhi (Moscow: Khudozhestvennaia lit-ra, 1984).
  • Stikhi (Erevan: Izd-vo "Sovetakan Grogh," 1985).
  • Ցեղին սիրտը (Constantinople: Hratarakutiwn Artsiw Zogh. Gravacharanotsi, 1909).
  • Ցեղին սիրտը (Jerusalem: Tparan Srbots Hakobeants, 1953).
  • Varoujean: poems (Beirut: Impr. Hamaskaine, n.d.).

Writings about him:

  • Esajanian, Levon. Դանիէլ Վարուժան (կեանքը եւ գործը) (Constantinople: Berberian, 1919).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Raymond Kévorkian: Le Génocide des Arméniens, Odile Jacob, Paris 2006 2-7381-1830-5, p. 663
  2. ^ Aberbach, David (2012). The European Jews, Patriotism and the Liberal State 1789-1939: A Study of Literature and Social Psychology. Routledge. p. 194. ISBN 9781136158957. 
  3. ^ Dadrian, Vahakn N.; Akçam, Taner (2011). Judgment at Istanbul the Armenian genocide trials. New York: Berghahn Books. p. 123. ISBN 9780857452863. 
  4. ^ Balakian, Grigoris (2010). Armenian Golgotha: A Memoir of the Armenian Genocide, 1915-1918. New York: Vintage Books. p. 115. ISBN 9781400096770. 

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