Mkhitar Djrbashian

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Mkhitar Djrbashian
Born(1918-09-11)11 September 1918
Died6 May 1994(1994-05-06) (aged 75)
Alma materYerevan State University
Scientific career
InstitutionsNational Academy of Sciences of Armenia, Yerevan State University
Doctoral advisorA.L. Shahinyan

Mkhitar Djrbashian (also M. M. Dzhrbashjan, M. M. Jerbashian; Russian: Мхитар Мкртичевич Джрбашян; Armenian: Մխիթար Մկրտչի Ջրբաշյան[ 11 September 1918 – 6 May 1994) was a notable Armenian mathematician, who made significant contributions to the constructive theory of functions, harmonic analysis, theory of analytic functions and a fundamental contribution to the classical theory of univalent analytic functions.[1] He was born in Yerevan in a family of refugees from the town Van of Western Armenia escaping from the Armenian Genocide[2][3][4] of 1915 in Turkey. Mkhitar Djrbashian created some well-known mathematical theories (see, e.g.[5][6][7] ) and did everything possible for the development of Armenian Mathematical School to the high international standards in many branches of mathematics.


Djrbashian was born to an old Van family, established before 14th century, long before Ottoman Empire arose, by a successful merchant who returned to his fatherland from Iran and bought a piece of land in Aygestan (Armenian: Այգեստան, i.e. gardens) district of the town Van. The community water source was in his land, and his family got the obligation to justly distribute the scarce water among the channels to Aygestan gardens for many centuries, according to quotas established by the community. This gave rise to the family name Jerbashkhian (Armenian: Ջրբաշխյան, i.e. water distributor). Mkhitar Djrbashian's father Mkrtich was one of the 7 founders of Van Guild of Merchants which foresaw the possibility of Turkish military actions against the civilian population of their town and started to reserve weapons for self-defense. In June, 1915 he participated as a soldier in people's volunteer corps against Turkish regular army sent to murder all inhabitants of the Armenian town Van and surrounding villages. Thanks to an attack of Russian Army, the inhabitants of Van and some of villagers of the Vaspurakan Province were saved and then migrated with the Russian Army to Erivan Governorate of Russian Empire: an eastern part of Armenia. In the first years under communists, Mkrtich Jerbashkhian continued importing European goods and selling them in the shops of his commercial company in Yerevan, Tiflis (renamed Tbilisi by communists) and Baku. For this reason, he was deprived of voting right in the USSR, and because of this his elder son Mkhitar was excluded from the last year of the school. Other branches of Jerbashkhian family also were forced to leave their fatherland. Some of them migrated to Yerevan and Tiflis, others appeared as refugees in Marseille.

Mkhitar Djrbashian's father Mkrtich Jerbashkhian kept secret his fluency in French and German languages and his political views to avoid NKVD repressions.

Mkhitar Jerbashkhian had two sisters: Sirvard (1904–1990) and Gohar (1921–2000), and a brother Eduard Jerbashkhian (1923–1999), a literary critic, Real Member of Armenian National Academy of Sciences (1982) and the Director of Institute of Literature [8] of the Armenian National Academy of Sciences from 1977 to 1999. The family name Jerbashkhian later was simplified to Jerbashian, and in accordance with the Russian spelling is given as Dzhrbashjan or Djrbashian in many mathematical publications.


Mkhitar Djrbashian was born in Yerevan on September 11, 1918. Being deprived of continuing his secondary education in Yerevan, he accomplished his school education in Tiflis in 1936, thanks to the assistance of his uncle's family. Back in Yerevan after Stalin's declaration that "children are not responsible for their parents", Mkhitar Djrbashian could enroll in Yerevan State University, where his scientific activities were encouraged by Prof. Artashes Shahinian, a talented teacher who directed his pupils mainly to Approximation theory.

Mkhitar Djrbashian was greatly influenced by the results of Rolf Nevanlinna in Complex Analysis, which he studied attending lectures delivered by Mstislav Keldysh at Yerevan State University in 1944. This directed his scientific research to the field of Complex Analysis.

Under the supervision of Prof. Artashes Shahinian, Mkhitar Djrbashian was the first to defend a Candidate of Sciences Thesis in mathematics at Yerevan State University in 1945, with some new, original results on weighted Nevanlinna classes of meromorphic functions (see Section 216 in [9]). In 1949 Mkhitar Djrbashian defended his Doctor of Science Thesis in Moscow State University with excellent references from Prof. Mstislav Keldysh, Prof. Alexander Gelfond and Prof. Alexei Markushevich ru:Маркушевич, Алексей Иванович.

Being the leading figure in the mathematics of Armenia, a Full Member of Armenian Academy of Sciences from 1956, Mkhitar Djrbashian did everything possible for the development of Armenian Mathematical School to the high international standards in many branches of mathematics. He was the founder and the Director of Institute of Mathematics of National Academy of Sciences of Armenia (1971–1989), then the Honorary Director of the same institute up to his death on May 6, 1994 of a heart attack. He was the founder of Izvestiya Natsionalnoi Akademii Nauk Armenii, Matematika (English translation: Journal of Contemporary Mathematical Analysis, Armenian Academy of Sciences, Allerton Press Inc.) [1] and its Editor in Chief (1971–1994), the Dean of the Physical-Mathematical and then Mechanical-Mathematical Department of Yerevan State University (1957–1960), and the Head of the Chair of Function Theory (1978–1986).


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ Kifner, John (7 December 2007). "Armenian Genocide of 1915: An Overview". The New York Times.
  4. ^ Tavernise, Sabrina. The New York Times Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ Djrbashian, M. M. (1966). "Integral Transforms and Representation of Functions in the Complex Domain [in Russian]". Moscow, Nauka.
  6. ^ Djrbashian, M. M. (1975). "Theory of Factorization and Boundary Properties of Functions Meromorphic in the Disc". Proceedings of the ICM, Vancouver, B.C. 2: 197–202.
  7. ^ Djrbashian, M. M. (1993). "Harmonic Analysis and Boundary Value Problems in the Complex Domain". Birkhauser Verlag.
  8. ^
  9. ^ Nevanlinna, R. (1935). Eindeutige Analytische Funktionen. Berlin: Springer Verlag.

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