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Hovhannes Toumanian
1869-1923

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The Study Room




“Smoking and asking for books are not allowed”: This writing is stuck on the wall of the study room. Elegant, rich, excessively furnished, where at the center can be found the green cloth covered office desk, while in one of the corners is the beautiful, opulent bookcase. Toumanian had named it “Muromets”, because he had bought it for having received honorarium for the translation of the poem “Ilya of Murom”.
Here are born many of his masterpieces. This room contains Toumanian’s aesthetic touch. Books, photographs of relatives, statuettes, canvases, beautiful writing tools; Toumanian was a frequent visitor to antique shops and shops where imported items were usually on sale. At the last phase of his life, when he was heavily ill, he would seldom sit at the rocking chair in front of the desk, instead he would lie down on the mattress-couch by the wall, would write on small pieces of paper his quartets and would put them in a specifically designed drawer. There is also the large photograph of his son Artavazd hung on the wall, who was killed in during the skirmishes in Van in 1918. Artavazd’s death was Toumanian’s biggest tragedy, from which he did not recover.

Guest Room

The Guest Room is comfortable and elegant. Here is where Toumanian’s relatives, close friends, intellectuals gathered and literary readings were organized. It was wishful for everyone to be here. Not only were the hosts contributed to that, but also the furniture, the presence of music, the art works and the copiousness of books. All of this created a pleasant and atmospheric environment. The piano, which Toumanian had bought for his daughter Anush, was also played by well-known Armenian composers Armen Tigranyan, Alexander Spendiaryan, Romanos Melikyan, Mushegh Aghayan, Anushavan Ter-Ghevondyan, Anton Mayilyan, Serguei Barkhudaryan. Artist Gevorg Bashinjanghyan’s “Rainy Day” and “Winter evening at Manglis” canvases are hung on the walls. Shota Rustaveli’s bust was presented as a gift to Toumanian by Yakov Nikoladze.

The Refectory


“Toumanian loved feasts, he was the strange combination of geniality and festivity” people used to tell about him. Her daughter remembers in her memoirs “His feast was work for him”. The elegantly chosen set on the huge table was foreseen for 12 people` the ten children and Mr. and Mrs. Toumanian. The porcelaim plates tells a lot about Toumanian. All of the chairs are the same kind, except for one. That was the host’s chair at the head of the table. He would only cede his place to his closest friend, Ghazaros Aghayan. Toumanian’s house was always filled with guests, and the festivities were neverending. Toumanian’s toasts and the songs which accompanied them have remained in the memoirs of his contemporaries. To his already nominations “Poet of All Armenians” and “Father of all Armenian orphans” was also added the nomination of “Toastmaster of all Armenians”.

Children’s Room


The items of the children’s room were not kept. That deficiency was completed by exhibiting various items telling the stories of the children. The visitor can also find their photographs, their biographies, as well as personal belongings and documents. Different tables are designated for the daughters Nvard and Ashkhen. On the walls are hung Hovhannes’, Olga’s, Nvard’s, Arpenik’s and Ashkhen Toumanian’s portraits.

Nvard Toumanian’s Room


Nvard felt very close with her father, would accompany him during almost all of his travels. She had studied literature and was author of “Memories and discussions”, “Toumanian’s childhood and adolescence”, “Toumanian the critic” and other books. The poet loved to lied down on the velvet couch and talked with his daughter. In the small lobby can be found the high mirror, while in the small table drawer are exhibited the poet’s large sized hat, two other hats belonging to two of his sons, as well as different household items.

Balcony




The Tbilisian apartment had a huge outdoor balcony. Toumanian loved to sit here, on the rocking chair, breath the fresh air and be amazed by the view and, by being inspired by all of this, he would work. Here are exhibited Mrs. Olga’s belongings, kitchen items, as well as various furnitures. Up till today you can find on the balcony table Toumanian’s favorite fruit, the jujube.

Olga’s Room




Hovhannes Toumanian wife Olga’s room, although not rich with furniture, but nevertheless is very delicate and elegant. The most captivating is the “Zinger” sewing machin, which Olga Machkalyan had received from her mother. Mrs. Olga’s had great skills in sewing and would always dress his children elegant.