Abbas-Kuli-aga Bakikhanov

Bakikhanov, Abbas-Kuli-aga

 

(pseudonym: Gudsi). Born June 21, 1794, in the village of Amiradzhany, near Baku; died 1847, in the city of Kuba, Azerbaijan. Azerbaijani scholar and writer. Born into a family of Baku khans.

From 1819 on, Bakikhanov worked as a translator of oriental languages for the governor of Tiflis. From 1826 to 1829 he took part in Russia’s wars with Iran and Turkey and in the Russian-Iranian negotiations in Turkmanchai. He was a broadly educated man, knew several languages, and had a good knowledge of Oriental literature and philosophy. He was a fervent partisan of the cultural rapprochement between Azerbaijan and Russia and was close to A. S. Griboedov, A. A. Bestuzhev (Marlinskii), W. K. Küchel-becker, M. F. Akhundov, Kh. Abovian, A. Chavchavadze, and others. He became acquainted with A. S. Pushkin in St. Petersburg. Bakikhanov defended feudal privileges, but he condemned the punitive actions of the tsarist authorities against the rebellious peasants of Kuba Province in 1837. In 1841 he completed a history of northern Azerbaijan from ancient times until 1813 (Flower Garden of Paradise, published in 1926). Bakikhanov interpreted historical events from an idealist’s point of view. He wrote scholarly works on pedagogy and philosophy; on the phonetics, morphology, and syntax of the Farsi language; and on astronomy and geography. In his work Angels’ Secret he introduced the basic teachings of Copernicus to the Muslims.

Bakikhanov also wrote literary works in verse and prose. The Address to the People of Tabriz was a satire against the Iranian rulers and clergy. The short story “Book About Asker” told about freedom of love and attacked prejudices. The Book of Precepts and the ethical treatise Improving Morals and Manners criticized backwardness and superstition and preached enlightenment. Bakikhanov was a pioneer in the development of new literary genres (the novella, realistic narrative poetry). He introduced the theme of the “little man” in literature.

WORKS

Bädii äsärlär. Baku, 1964.

REFERENCES

Agaian, Ts. P. A. Bakikhanov. Baku, 1948.
Kasim-zade, F. Abbas-kuli Aga Bakikhanov (Gudsi): Zhizn’ i tvorchestvo. Baku, 1958.
Sovremenniki o Bakikhanove. Baku, 1959.(A collection.)
Istoriia Azerbaidzhana, vol. 2. Baku, 1960. Pages 102–107.

I. M. GASANOV and I. V. STRIGUNOV

References in classic literature ?
The King was unable to flee because he could not see which way to run; so he stood still and howled and shouted and screamed in abject fear.
Since the memorable adventure of the fulling mills," said Don Quixote, "I have never seen Sancho in such a fright as now; were I as superstitious as others his abject fear would cause me some little trepidation of spirit.
We were overtaken by as severe a thunder storm as I have ever seen, of which the King was in such abject fear that he commanded that we land at the Bishop of Durham's palace opposite which we then were.