ARABKIR: Homage to an Armenian Community
By Antranik Poladian and George Jerjian
The story of the Armenians of Arabkir spans 3,500 years. In this book, the authors, with the help of 50 contributors, weave together Arabkir’s history and heartland, its community and culture, its food and faith, its geography and genocide, and its songs and famous sons.
In Alexander the Great’s time, they knew Arabkir as Arauraca or Arabrakenoi. In the Byzantine period, the name evolved to Arabkares, then Harabker, and ultimately to Arabkir. Around the 1790s, the Armenians left old Arabkir (Eski Shehir) and resettled a few miles away renaming it Arabkir. In the 1920s, a New Arabkir was created as a suburb of Yerevan, the capital of Armenia.
Today, old Arabkir is a ghost of its former self and new Arabkir is part of metro Yerevan, hosting the city’s second railway station and more than a football team carries its name. Today, the grandsons and granddaughters of the Armenians of Arabkir have created new homes, carved new lives and commingled in new communities in all corners of the world. This book is a homage to the Armenians of Arabkir – past, present, and future.