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Khachik Dashtents

Khachik Dashtents

Biography

Khachik Dashtents (Tonoyan Khachik Tonoevitch) – a famous Armenian writer, poet, and translator – was born into a shepherd’s family on April 15, 1909 in the village of Dashtayan of Sasun vilayet in Western Armenia. Later he chose his literary pseudonym according to his village’s name – Dashtents.

Dashtents witnessed a lot of suffering through the hard roads that led him from the Sasun Mountains to Eastern Armenia, and he finally took refuge in the orphanage of the American Mission of Alexandropol (later Leninakan, currently Gyumri), where he received his early education.

In 1932 Dashtents graduated from the Yerevan State University, and in 1940 – from the English Language department of the Moscow Institute of Foreign Languages.

Since his first steps in literature Dashtents has been one of Armenia’s favorite authors. From an early age Dashtents absorbed the fables, every day life, traditions – all the ethos of the Armenian nation – and it became a base for creation of the epic prose to which he dedicated his life.

In his novels “Khodedan” (1950) and "Call of Plowmen" Dashtents pictured the tragedy of western Armenians during the years of World War I (1914-1918), who suffered from the genocide of Armenians in Turkey. He also wrote the historical drama “Tigran the Great” in 1947.Dashtents is also the author of poetry anthologies “The Book of Songs” (1932), “Spring Songs” (1934), “Flame” (1936), “Highland Flowers” (1963), where he describes the everyday life of his motherland – Armenia. Dashtents is also famous for his translations of Shakespeare’s tragedies and comedies, and “The Song of Hiawatha” – H.W. Longfellow’s poem.

Acknowledgements:

Translated from Russian and adopted by: Isabella Armenak Ter-Hovhannisyan (Vega$).

Edited by: Ruth Bedevian

See also:

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