Nariman Narimanov Biography


Birthday: April 2, 1870 (Aries)

Born In: Tbilisi

Nariman Narimanov was an early 20th century Azerbaijani revolutionary, politician and writer. In his younger years, he worked as a medical practitioner and published the popular Azerbaijani revolutionary novel ‘Bahadur and Sona’. While studying medicine, he took part in the Revolution of 1905-1907 and become a prominent leader in a multitude of political parties. Even after being arrested and exiled from the country for five years, he continued to work for the Azerbaijani Communist Party. In 1920, he became a chair member the Soviet of People’s Commissars which ultimately led to the overthrow of the Russian control of Azerbijan. Thereafter, he became the head of Soviet Azerbijan. At the height of his political career, he was the main opponent of Sergo Ordzhonikidze, a student of Joseph Stalin, who wanted to merge the republics of Azerbaijan, Armenia and Georgia into the Transcaucasian Federation
Quick Facts

Died At Age: 54

Political Leaders Azerbaijani Men

Died on: March 19, 1925

place of death: Moscow

City: Tbilisi, Georgia

More Facts

education: Transcaucasian Teachers Seminary

Childhood & Early Life
Narimanov was born on April 2, 1870 in the city of Tiflis, Georgia (then part of the Russian empire), into a middle class merchant family of Azerbaijani descent.
In 1890, he graduated from secondary school at the Transcaucasian Teachers Seminary in Gori, Georgia.
While working as a teacher in the Tiflis province of Gizel-Adjal in 1895, he was an active novelist, translator and playwright. He translated Nikolia Gogol’s satirical play ‘The Government Inspector’ into Turkish.
His most well-known self-written works were the 1896 novel ‘Bahadur and Sona’ and the 1899 historical trilogy ‘Nadir-shah’ along with a number of short stories.
From 1902 to 1908, he studied medicine at the Novorossiysk University in Krasnodar Krai.
In 1908, he graduated from Odessa University in the Ukraine where he studied medicine.
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In 1905, while practicing medicine, Narimanov joined the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party, known as the Bolshevik party, and got involved in the Revolution of 1905.
He eventually became the leader of the Isheyun-Asheyun, a Persian socialist democratic party for which he was arrested and sent to five years of exile in 1909.
Despite his arrest and exile, he continued to organize the Azerbaijan Communist Party until 1913.
After the Great October Socialist Revolution in 1917, he was elected chairman of the Hummet, the Azerbaijani Social Democratic Political Party, which would eventually become the Communist Party of Azerbaijan.
In 1918, the Baku Soviet party appointed him the People’s Commissar of National Economy.
When the Baku Soviet regime fell in 1918, he escaped from the city and became the People’s Commissariat of Foreign Affairs for Soviet Russia.
Later, he was appointed the Deputy People’s Commissar in the Commissariat of National Affairs.
In April 1923, he was elected a candidate to the Central Committee of RKP, the Russian Communist Party of Bolsheviks. After disagreeing with Joseph Stalin’s supporter Sergo Ordzhonikidze, he was placed in a position of little importance in Moscow under the guise of a promotion. There, he was put in charge of relations between Iran and Afghanistan.
Major Works
In 1920, he became the chairman of the Azerbaijani Revolutionary Committee, eventually becoming the Chairman of the Council of People’s Commissars’ of the Azerbaijani Soviet Republic
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From May 1920 to May 1921, he served as head of the Soviet Azerbaijani government.
In 1922, he attended the Genoese Conference as a Soviet delegate. The same year, he was elected as chairman of the Union Council of Transcaucasian Federation, a republic including Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia.
On December 30, 1922, he was elected by the Central Executive Committee as chairman for the USSR, a position he held until March 19, 1925.
Personal Life & Legacy
He was married to Gulsum.
Narimanov suffered a heart attack and died on March 19, 1925, leaving behind his wife Gulsum and young son, Najaf.
His ashes were interned at the Kremlin Wall Necropolis in Moscow. The Russian Government declared three days of mourning, and thousands of people attended his funeral.
In 1938, his son Najaf joined the red army and studied at the Kiev Higher Military Radio Technical Engineering School until 1940. He was killed while serving as Tank Division Commander during the Eastern Front battles (World War II).
During the Soviet political turmoil in the 1930s, known as The Great Purge, Narimanov was denounced along with his fellow Hummet nationalists. After the death of Joseph Stalin in 1953, his legacy was revived and celebrated.
Azerbaijanis have honored him with monuments in Sumgayit, Baku and Ganja along with a street at the Azerbaijan Medical University in Baku. He has a monument in Georgia as well.
Narimanov’s monument in Baku is one of the few political statues left standing after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, since he is seen by the people as a true supporter of Azerbaijan.
Before getting involved in politics, Narimanov helped build Gizel-Adjal’s first public library.
Revolutionary Leon Trotsky referred to his death as the ‘second biggest loss for the Eastern World’.

See the events in life of Nariman Narimanov in Chronological Order

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