Hagop Baronian

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Hagop Baronian
Յակոբ Պարոնեան.jpg
Born 19 November 1843
Adrianople, Ottoman Empire
Died 27 May 1891
Constantinople, Ottoman Empire
Occupation Author, newspaper editor, educator
Nationality Ottoman
Period 19th century
Genre Satire
Subject Society, politics
Literary movement Realism
Notable works Honorable Beggars

Hagop Baronian (pronounced in Eastern Armenian as Hakop Paronyan, TAO: Յակոբ Պարոնեան, RAO: Հակոբ Պարոնյան, Turkish: Hagop Baronyan; 1843–1891) was an influential Ottoman Armenian writer, playwright, journalist, and educator in the 19th century.

Biography[edit]

Born in Adrianople, Baronian is widely acknowledged as the greatest Armenian satirist of all time, closely followed by Yervant Odian. Before going to Constantinople Baronian worked as a pharmacy assistant in his hometown Adrianople.

In 1868 finally Baronian left for Constantinople in prospect of finding a job. He first worked as a tutor, and gave private lessons to members of wealthy Armenian families. Afterwards he was appointed as a teacher in Armenian seminary in Scutari, where the notable Armenian poet Bedros Tourian was among his students. In 1872, Baronian entered journalism as an editor-in-chief of different satirical magazines in the Armenian language. He continued his work in journalism until 1888, when Ottoman authorities decided to ban many magazines in Armenian, including Baronian's.

In 1891, Baronian came down with a severe case of tuberculosis, resulting in his death on May 27 that year.

Baronian's most significant works include satirical novel Honorable Beggars (1887) and comedies Baghdasar Aghbar (1886) and Oriental Dentist (1868). In this works Baronian aimed to show the defects of Constantinople's society in satirical way and incredible sense of humor.

Cover of Metsapativ Muratskanner

Baronian was also known for his biting, sarcastic criticisms of leading figures in the Armenian social circles of Istanbul; some of these critical comments appear in his book Azkayin Chocher ("National Bigshots"). Unfortunately, he himself suffered the same fate as the characters in Medzabadiv Mouratsganner, and died penniless on the streets of Istanbul. He was buried in an Armenian cemetery in Istanbul, but the precise location of his grave has been lost.

Tributes[edit]

The Yerevan State Musical Comedy Theatre was named after Hagop Baronian (Armenian: Հակոբ Պարոնյանի անվան Պետական Երաժշտական Կոմեդիայի Թատրոն).

References[edit]

  • Parlakian, Nishan (2001). Modern Armenian Drama: An Anthology. New York: Columbia University Press, p. 61.