Demirchian, Derenik Karapetovich

Demirchian, Derenik Karapetovich


Born Feb. 6 (18), 1877, in Akhalkalaki; died Dec. 6, 1956, in Yerevan. Soviet Armenian writer; academician of the Academy of Sciences of the Armenian SSR (1953).

Demirchian graduated from the Nersisian Seminary in Tiflis in 1897 and the pedagogical faculty of the University of Geneva in 1909. He worked as a teacher. His works were first published in 1893. His first collection of verses, which was permeated with a feeling of loneliness, appeared in 1899. The revolution of 1905–07 in Russia aroused in Demirchian an intense interest in political problems. His second collection of verses appeared in 1913. Demirchian emerges as a passionate defender of the rights of ordinary people in such works as the historical-heroic epic poem Lenk-Timur’, the short stories “The Violin and the Shepherd’s Pipe,” “The Unwanted One,” “The Smile,” “The Stomach,” and “The Priest” and the drama Reprisal. In his stories and novellas of the 1920’s and 1930’s, including “At the Workers’ Resort,” “Merke,” “Sato” (1929), Rashid, Nigiar, and “Comrades,” Demirchian wrote about the revolutionary struggle and creative labor of the Soviet people. In the drama-tale Nazar the Brave (1924) Demirchian ridiculed monarchy and bourgeois morality. His plays Napoleon Korkotian, Kaputan, and Native Land (1939) influenced the development of Soviet Armenian drama in the 1920’s and 1930’s The monumental novel Vardanank (parts 1–2, 1943–46; revised 2nd ed., 1951), which depicts the Armenian war of national liberation in 451, is filled with ideas of patriotism. The unfinished novel Mesrop Mashtots (part 1, 1956) depicts the life of an Armenian enlightener and scholar of the fourth and fifth centuries. Demirchian wrote works on literary scholarship, linguistics, historiography, and art history. He was awarded the Order of Lenin, the Order of the Red Banner of Labor, and various medals.


Erkeri zhoghovatsu, books 1–8. Yerevan, 1955–63.
Vardanank’, books 1–2. Yerevan, 1968.
In Russian translation:
Izbrannoe. Yerevan, 1950.
Rasskazy. Moscow, 1954.
Vardanank. Moscow, 1961.
Chargei. Yerevan, 1956.


Muradian, G. B. Derenik Demirchian. Yerevan, 1956.
Istonia armianskoi sovetskoi literatury. Moscow, 1966. Pages 428–50.
Hakhumian, T. Derenik Demirchiani dramaturgian. Yerevan, 1958.
Derenik Demirchian, 1877–1956. Yerevan, 1957. (With bibliography.)