Museum

Orbeli brothers’ house-museum

Orbeli brothers, Rouben, Levon and Joseph, are coming from an old dynasty of Armenian men of science and culture, famous from XII century. Their grandfather – Joseph, who graduated from Lazarev seminary (Moscow), was the archpriest of Tbilisi temple.  His son Abgar (1849-1912), getting legal education at Saint-Petersburg’s Imperial University, carried on a legal practice and was married to princess V. Argutinskaya-Dolgorukova.

Abgar’s eldest son Rouben followed in father’s wake. Graduating from the same university and faculty, he served as a secretary in cassation committee of Russian Senate. Later he engaged in marine archaeology. Professor Rouben Orbeli is the founder of marine archaeology and one of the major specialists of ocean engineering.

Levon Orbeli (1882-1958) was born in Tsakhkadzor. A graduate of Saint-Petersburg’s Military Medical Academy, he was a follower of world-known physiologist Pavlov in studies of animals’ higher nervous activity. In 1942 Levon Orbeli was elected as vice-president of USSR Academy of Science. Later he was appointed to the position of head of Military Medical Academy. Levon Orbeli was a full member of Academy of science of USSR and Armenian SSR.

The junior Orbeli, Joseph (1887-1961), graduated from the Faculty of history and philology of Saint-Petersburg’s university.  Since university times he took part in archaeological excavations of Armenian middle-age capital Ani. Joseph Orbeli was a friend and assistant of famous Orientalist Nicholas Marr, who was greatly interested in Armenian studies. For many years Joseph Orbeli had been working as director of the State Hermitage Museum of Leningrad.  In 1943 he was elected as first president of Academy of science of Soviet Armenia.

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