HISTORICAL AND DEMOGRAPHIC IMAGE OF WESTERN ARMENIA ON THE EVE OF THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE

Part seven: South-eastern districts of Bitlis vilayet

Summary

Gegham M. Badalyan

Keywords – Aznvatsdzor, Tatik, Khizan district, KhizanGyavrner, Shenadzor, Sparkert, Mamrtank, Upper Karkar, Sgherd city, Barvari, Vozm township, Shirvan Arvakh-Eruh.

The article presents the southeastern administrative units of Bitlis Vilayet: small districts (in Turkish – nahiye) of Bagesh city – Aznvadzor, Tatik, Parkhand, Khultik-Nagia and Shatakh, which were under the direct governor control, the province of Khizan in full (with central districts Khizan-Gyavrner, Shenadzor, Sparkert, Mamrtank and Lower Karkar), sanjak’s center with the same name – Sgerd city and Barvar province, Shirvan province, and Arvakh or Eruh under Sgherd’s governor control (in Turkish – mutasarrif), where on the eve of the First world war I Armenians made up the vast majority (50% or more). Such administrative units were Aznvatsdzor and Tatik (Baghesh’d central region), as well as Khizan’s districts – Shenadzor, Sparkert, Mamrtank. And in Parkhand and Lower Karkar Armenians constituted the majority of the population (above 70%). Unfortunately, in this part of the Bitlis vilayet one could also meet the areas cleared of Armenians that was a result of the influx of new nomadic Kurdish tribes from northern Mesopotamia in the 1st half of the 19th century. The Kurdish national movement, led by Bardkhan in the 1840s, and the Ottoman State’s powerful military retaliation in response also played no less negative role. Moreover, it was fatal also for semi-independent Armenian authorities surviving in these areas. As a result, many parts of the provinces Khizan and Tsgherd were filled mainly by Kurds.

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