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Grigor Zohrap
“Familiar Faces” consists of 17 articles on the prominent personalities of his time. According to Zohrap, his “Diary of a Traveler” expresses his entire philosophy of life. This book, based on his time living in Europe from 1895 to 1908, was published posthumously in 1922. Zohrap’s writings fall into several groups depicting social, love, contemplative-philosophical, lyrical and satiric images. In a series of short stories the author reveals the social origin of human tragedy.

Zohrap gives special attention to the idea of love which exposes the characteristics of people. Here the man of art analyzing mysteries of the soul is joined by a great humanist who in the subject of love looks into the subject of happiness. He has a notable way of choosing and working out a plot.

“I have no interest in big events, yet minor events that seem so trivial to others, are of serious meditation to me”, Zohrap wrote. Among minor events the writer selects those having deep inner meaning turning them into means to reflect bigger life.

His deeply analytic approach uncovers inner relations of events and experiences. In a few paragraphs the nature and surroundings of characters become very vivid. Grigor Zohrap’s stories were translated into many languages.

1894-95 were severe years for Western Armenians (living in Turkey). Mass murders of Armenians had began. All progressive Armenian figures were compelled to leave Turkey and to be based in Europe and Egypt.

In this period of national spiritual recession Zohrap departed from literature and actively was engaged in lawyer business and important legal proceedings. He perfectly spoke French and frequently protected peoples’ rights in the First Trade Courts of Turkey. He was interp

reter and lawyer, adviser in the Russian Embassy in Turkey. This circumstance entitled Zohrap to conduct courts of Russian citizens and freely to move in Europe.

In 1892, the literary political magazine “Masis” was published. The editor was Zohrap. The rich creative period began again.

In July, 1908, the Constitution of 1876 was restored in Turkey. With hopes and optimism he returned home from Paris. A writer and community leader, he became a well-known trial lawyer and was acclaimed for his dauntless attacks on injustice and corruption.

In 1908, Zohrap was elected by a deputy of Turkish Parliament and actively participated in all parliamentary discussions, achieved to the acceptance of fair laws. During his years in political life Zohrap championed the cause of the Armenians in the capital and the provinces: as a member of the Ottoman Chamber of Deputies, he was acclaimed as “the most eloquent parliamentarian in the Turkish government”.

He spoke about himself: “I am the defence counsel for the Constitution”. Zohrap was a deputy of the Armenian National Assembly. He was dear and influential person both in national and in general public - political and cultural life of Western Armenia.

In July, 1915, Grigor Zohrap was brutally killed by Turkish villains during the height of the hostilities between Armenians and Turks.

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Writer: Hasmik Muradyan
Editor: Eugenia Melkonyan
 Date Added: Thursday August 31, 2006 09:03:06 

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