Armenia: Political And Ethnic Boundaries 1878–1948

ISBN:  (13) 978-1-85207-955-0  First published: 1998 
Extent:  1 volume, c.1,000 pages, including 1 map box  Editor:  A.L.P. Burdett  
Paper: Printed on acid free paper  
Binding: Library bindings with gilt finish  
See sample pages: not available
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RESUMÉ


This collection of documents and maps provides scholars with an independent research publication whose primary aim is to illustrate key events, using material from British government archives, as markers in defining Armenian territory. These 70 years are crucial in the formation of the boundaries of what now constitutes the state of Armenia. The "Armenian Question" came under international scrutiny with the rise of modern nationalism in the Armenian communities living in the Ottoman and Russian empires. Borders had always shifted to and fro on the territory inhabited by Armenians. What changed from the 19th century onwards was that the Armenians - despite being militarily and politically weak - now tried to set a political agenda of their own (ultimately, the creation of an independent Armenian state encompassing a large part of what they considered to be their historical homeland) and to gain the maximum from the rivalry of the Great Powers in Anatolia and the Transcaucasus.

HISTORICAL OVERVIEW


The Armenian Question (as it was called at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th centuries) came under international scrutiny as a separate item in international politics only because nationalism in its modern sense had begun to penetrate the Armenian communities living in the Ottoman and Russian empires. Borders had always shifted to and fro on the territory inhabited by Armenians. What changed from the 19th century onwards was that the Armenians - despite being militarily and politically weak - now tried to set a political agenda of their own (ultimately, the creation of an independent Armenian state encompassing a large part of what they considered to be their historical homeland) and to gain the maximum from the rivalry of the Great Powers in Anatolia and the Transcaucasus.
Armenian political demands were always flexible in the period under study. Armenian politicians and thinkers have realised on countless occasions that - because of the constraints imposed by the international balance of power - they can only aim, at a certain political juncture, at something much less than their ultimate political objective. This is why the events described in these documents are to be seen as markers in defining shifts in Armenian national expectations as well. Moreover, a belief has grown, over the years, among many politically-conscious Armenians that only Armenian political control over a certain territory can ensure the survival of the ethnic Armenian character of that part of the imagined historical homeland; hence, the links between political and ethnic boundaries in most Armenian minds.
For the Armenians, Armenia encompasses a much larger territory than the six eastern vilayets of the Ottoman empire. The documents refer to many political events when Armenians were trying to establish political control over the Armenian-populated regions of the Russian Empire (Yerevan and its surroundings, Nakhichevan, Karabagh, Akhalkalak and Akhaltsikhe) and even over Cilicia, which is not considered by Armenians to be part of their historical homeland (the “cradle” of Armenian identity and civilisation). Armenia was only an imagined territory from the Middle Ages until the end of May 1918 with no corresponding consistent administrative unit. The territory known today as Armenia (which was shaped through international agreements made in 1920-21) is much smaller than many Armenians think it should be.
Much documentary evidence has already been published about the position of the Ottoman Armenians during the First World War and in this relatively short collection the documents therefore focus on other points as well. This is not to lessen the significance of the deaths of a great many people.
The two Transcaucasian federations, in the spring and early summer of 1918 and then - under Soviet rule - in 1922-36, were separated from one another by the Independent Republic of Armenia (1918-20) and the internationally recognised sovereign Soviet republic of Armenia (1920-22). The documents relating to the period 1918-21 provide a detailed account of those years. The following territorial questions are covered: the future of the six Ottoman vilayets; the future of Cilicia; arrangements with Azerbaijan over mountainous Karabagh, Zangezour and Nakhichevan; frontier arrangements with Georgia.
The collection concludes with events in the aftermath of the Second World War, when the Soviet Government not only made territorial demands on Turkey and encouraged 100,000 Armenians to return to the Armenian SSR, but also forced thousands of ethnic Azerbaijanis living in Armenia to move to Azerbaijan and thus make room for the incoming Armenian repatriates.

DOCUMENTARY IMPORTANCE


This collection of documents and maps provides scholars with an independent research publication covering nearly one century of modern Armenian history. The primary aim of the work is to illustrate key events, using material from British government archives, as markers in defining Armenian territory.

KEY DOCUMENTS


Historical overview 1828-83
  • Treaty of Tourkmanchai, 1828, between Russia and Persia, and description of agreed frontier
  • Article defining Russo-Turkish frontiers, 1854
  • Attempts to resolve Turco-Russian boundary, 1857-58
  • Boundary between Persia and Russia, 1874
  • Ethnic migrations to and from Armenia, 1877
Ethnic displacement 1895-1905
  • Summary of the ´Armenian Question´ at 1895
  • Expulsion of Armenians from Sassoon, 1904-05
  • Growing insurrectionist activity in Armenia, 1905
Negotiations for reform, 1912-14
  • Armenian reform project, 1912
  • Armenian revolt against Ottoman rule, 1913
  • Armenian Tachnaksootioun Revolutionary Committee, 1913
  • Russian push into Armenia, 1913-14
Armenian insurrections and exodus, 1915

  • Further massacres of Armenians by Turks, 1915
  • Arrival of refugees in Batoum, 1915
State of Armenia, 1918
  • Effect on Armenia of Armistice of 1918
  • Effect of military advances into Armenia and German alliance with Turkey, 1918
Delegation of the Republic of Armenia to the League of Nations, 1919-20
  • ´La République Arménienne et ses Voisins´, 1919
  • Extension of the Armenian State into Turkish territory, 1919
Post-war international agreements further defining Armenia, 1920-21
  • Treaty of Sèvres, 1920
  • Armenia-Bolshevik Accord, 1920
  • Georgia-Soviet Russia Treaty, 1920, defining Russian Armenia
  • Treaties of Alexandropol, 1920, and Kars, 1921
  • Status of Armenia: sovereignty, application for admittance to League of Nations, 1920-21




Frontier definitions and conflicts, 1920-21

  • Armenian frontiers and area, 1920
  • Arbitration by American President, Woodrow Wilson, on Turco-Armenian frontier, 1920
  • Turco-Armenian military conflicts, 1920
  • Comparative population figures for the three Transcaucasian republics, 1920
  • Questions regarding Batoum zone, 1920
  • Division of Cilicia, 1920
  • Karabagh and Zangezour disputed area, 1920
  • Kars and Alexandropol: reports of further massacres of Armenians by Turks, 1921
  • Nakhitchevan province disputed, 1920
  • Georgian-Armenian frontiers, 1920
Attempts to secure a ´national home for Armenians´, 1921-24
  • Refugees in the Turkish-Armenian frontier area, Cilicia, and Greece: renewed calls for a national home for all Armenians, 1920-21
  • Re-settlement schemes for Armenians, 1923-24
Recognition of Independence, 1924
  • Recognition by Soviet Union, Caucasian Republics, Great Britain etc., 1924
Population shifts, 1930-32
  • Reports of renewed displacements of Armenians from Turkish Armenia, 1930, 1932
  • Turco-Persian frontier adjustment, 1931-32
Russian claims to Armenia, 1945-48
  • Turkish Armenia: claim by Soviet Armenia and Armenians abroad to territory, 1945-46
  • Ethnic displacement and emigration, 1946
  • Depiction of Armenian Soviet Socialist Republic in 1945
  • Soviet Union´s claims to Ardahan and Kars regions of Armenia, 1948

MAPS


01. Carte de l´Arménie Russe, 1844.
02. Esquisse de la Frontière Russo-Turque, 1878.
03. Map of the Ottoman Dominions in Europe and Asia with the adjacent frontiers of the Russian and Persian empires, London, 1878.
04. Map of vilayet of Bitlis, showing distribution of Armenian and Kurdish population, 1881.
05. Les populations musulmanes, grecques et arméniennes en Asie-Mineure, 1897.
06. Map of Turkey in Asia, showing limits of Armenians as a settled rural and urban population, 1915.
07. Map to illustrate the Agreements of 1916 in regard to Asia Minor, etc., London, 1918.
08. Possible re-distribution of Ottoman Territory on the Principles of Self-Determination, 1918.
09. La République Arménienne, showing administrative divisions, 1919.
10. Délégation Nationale Arménienne. Map depicting proposed limits of Armenia, c. 1920.
11. Arménie. Military and political map, c. 1920.
12. Persia, Russia and Turkey in Asia. Azerbaijan province, Erivan, Erzerum and Van, 1922.
13. Map to illustrate Georgian and Armenian claims to certain Turkish provinces, 1946.