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Shavarsh Krissian

Shavarsh Krissian (July 22, 1886 – August 15, 1915) was an athlete, writer, publicist, journalist, educator, and editor of Marmnamarz, the first sports magazine of the Ottoman Empire.[3][4][5][6][7][8] He is considered one of the founders of the Armenian Olympics and the Homenetmen Armenian sports organization.[4][7][9][10] He was a victim of the Armenian Genocide.[2][11][12][13]

Shavarsh Krissian
Native name
Շաւարշ Քրիսեան
Born(1886-07-22)July 22, 1886
DiedAugust 15, 1915(1915-08-15) (aged 29)
Cause of deathArmenian Genocide
EducationRobert College
Known forathlete, writer, publicist, journalist, educator, editor of Marmnamarz, and founding member of Homenetmen
Political partyArmenian Revolutionary Federation[1][2]


Of Armenian descent, Shavarsh Krissian was born in the Beşiktaş district of Constantinople on July 22, 1886.[14][15] He studied at the local Makruhyan Armenian school and continued his education at the prestigious Reteos Berberian school in the Üsküdar district. He later studied and graduated from the Robert College.[16][17] In 1905 Krissian continued his education in London and the Lycée Janson de Sailly in Paris.[7][15] On July 19, 1909, he returned to Constantinople and began teaching physical education at local Armenian schools.[7][15]


In February 1911 Shavarsh Krissian published the Marmnamarz (Armenian: "Body of national physical training") which became the first sports periodical of the Ottoman Empire.[4][7][8][18] The Marmnamarz was a monthly periodical that provided the necessary information regarding sports events, news, and the results of competitions. The magazine also published photographs of various Armenian athletes throughout the world.[4] In the periodical Krissian established the concept of Armenian Olympics.[6] Marmnamarz eventually became an important contributor to the development of sports and athletic activity within the Armenian community of the Ottoman Empire. The periodical suspended its activity in 1914 due to World War I and ultimately ceased publication after Krissian fell victim to the Armenian Genocide.[4]


Though Homenetmen was formally established in 1918, three years after the death of Shavarsh Krissian, he is still considered one of its founding members.[4][7][9][10] The idea and founding principals of Homenetmen was first developed by Krissian.[6][9] He was instrumental in the establishment of the Armenian Olympics, which held its first competition on May 1, 1911.[6][7][10][14] Prior to World War I, there were about forty Armenian athletic clubs in Constantinople alone.[4] The Armenian Olympic committee's by-laws were eventually incorporated into Homenetmen.[6][7][10]

Armenian genocideEdit

On April 24, 1915, Shavarsh Krissian was one of the Armenian notables deported into the interior provinces of the Ottoman Empire as part of the Armenian genocide.[2][11] He was sent to the Ayaş prison in the province of Ankara.[2] During his prison sentence, Krissian organized gymnastic exercises. However, once news reached the deportees of Ayaş about the 20 Hunchakian gallows of 15 June 1915, the atmosphere in the prison was abruptly changed.[19] The prison guards viewed the gymnastic exercises with suspicion and severity.[20] Shavarsh Krissian was eventually rounded up and killed in the outskirts of Ankara.[1][2]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Georges Balakian: Le Golgotha arménien, Le cercle d'écrits caucasiens, La Ferté-Sous-Jouarre 2002 (vol. 1) ISBN 2-913564-08-9 pp. 87-94
  2. ^ a b c d e Ohanian, Pascual Carlos (1986). Turquía, estado genocida: (1915-1923) (in Spanish). Pascual C. Ohanian. p. 598. Retrieved 2 February 2013.
  3. ^ Teotoros Lapçinciyan Գողգոթա հայ հոգեւորականութեան [The Golgotha of the Armenian clergy], Constantinople, 1921 [gives an account of over 1.500 deported clergymen all over the Ottoman Empire with selected biographical entries and lists 100 notables of 24 April 1915 by name out of 270 in total and classifies them roughly in 9 professional groups]
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Demoyan, Hayk (2009). Armenian Sport in Ottoman Empire. Yerevan: Tigran Mets. p. 220.
  5. ^ "The role of Armenian Sport in Ottoman Empire". Panorama. September 2, 2008. Retrieved 2 February 2013.
  6. ^ a b c d e "Homenetmen's Timeline" (PDF). "Azadamard" Pasadena Homenetmen Chapter. Archived from the original (PDF) on 30 March 2012. Retrieved 2 February 2013.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h Onanyan, Vartan (April 20, 2011). Ավելացրեք "սպանված լրագրողների" ցանկը. Haykakan Jamanak (Armenian Times) (in Armenian). Retrieved 2 February 2013.
  8. ^ a b "Armenian Sport in the Ottoman Empire". Armenian Genocide Museum. September 2, 2008. Retrieved 2 February 2013. From 1911 to 1914, Shavarsh Qrisyan published the Marmnamarz sports magazine, the first sports periodical in the Ottoman Empire.
  9. ^ a b c "History of Homenetmen". Homenetmen Ani Chapter. Retrieved 2 February 2013.
  10. ^ a b c d "The History of Homenetmen". Asbarez. May 1, 2006. Retrieved 2 February 2013.
  11. ^ a b "The Armenian Review". 24. Hairenik Association. 1971: 22. Retrieved 2 February 2013. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  12. ^ "THE HISTORY OF HOMENETMEN". Homenetmen NY. Retrieved 5 February 2013. Soon after in 1915 the Armenian Genocide tragically took the life of Shavarsh Krissian as he along with other Armenian intellectuals and leaders were killed
  13. ^ "An illustrated book published by AGMI". Armenian Genocide Museum. 2009-10-13. Retrieved 5 February 2013. Many Armenian sportsmen fell victims to the Armenian Genocide. Among them was Shavarsh Chrisian, the editor of "Marmnamarz", and after it the publication of the magazine was stopped.
  14. ^ a b Koptas, Rober (26 July 2012). "Olimpiyat tarihinin gayrı resmi sayfası". Agos (in Turkish). Archived from the original on 27 January 2013. Retrieved 3 February 2013.
  15. ^ a b c Sargsyan, Gurgen (2003). Գրական հույզեր: Հոդվածներ (in Armenian). Զանգակ-97.
  16. ^ Oshagan, Vahe (1982). The English influence on west Armenian literature in the nineteenth century. Cleveland State University. p. 42. Retrieved 2 February 2013.
  17. ^ Sarafian, Kevork (1930). History of education in Armenia: y Kevork A. Sarafian, with introductions by Lester B. Rogers [and] Rt. Rev. Bishop Karekin. Press of the La Verne Leader. p. 187. Retrieved 2 February 2013.
  18. ^ Tuğlacı, Pars (2004). Tarih boyunca batı Ermenileri. İstanbul: Tuğlacı. ISBN 9789757423065.
  19. ^ Kévorkian, Raymond H. (2010). The Armenian genocide : a complete history. London: I. B. Tauris. p. 532. ISBN 9781848855618. Retrieved 3 February 2013.
  20. ^ Avedis Nakashian: A Man Who Found A Country, Thomas Y. Crowell Company, New York 1940 pp. 208-278

External linksEdit