Khachatur Araratov – An Example of Fearlessness and True Heroism

Khachatur Araratov

Khachatur (Kristapor) Gerasimovich Araratov, an awardee of the St. George Cross of the 4th degree, was born on June 18, 1876, in Tiflis. He was a descendant of hereditary Tiflis noblemen and the son of a retired lieutenant colonel Karapet (Gerasim) Avetikovich Araratov.

Araratov graduated from the Tiflis Cadet Corps (1893) and the Mikhailovsky Artillery School (1896). He has gone from the rank of podporuchik all the way to lieutenant colonel, a rank which he received 1916.

In the book “Armenians in the First World War” (1914-1918), his battle path is described. We will point out that in 1905, he was transferred to the Caucasian Grenadier Artillery Brigade. He has served as a senior officer of the 6th battery of the Caucasian Grenadier Artillery Brigade since January 23, 1907. He also was the commander of the 1st battery of the 21st Artillery Brigade in 1915.

Among Araratov’s awards are the Order of St. Stanislav of the 3rd degree (1904), the Order of St. Anna of the 3rd degree (1906), and Order of the St. Georgy of the 4th Degree. The latter was awarded to him on August 26, 1916, “for battling near the village of Nebylets on April 27, 1915, when the enemy, breaking into the positions of two regiments of the neighboring corps, bypassed the left flank of the 21st Infantry Division, threatening to cut off the only route of withdrawal for the division.

On personal initiative, turning the front of his battery 90 degrees, he rolled it into an open position and, remaining without any cover under strong rifle and artillery fire, shot passing enemy columns, stopped its offensive, and made it possible to retreat in order and settle in on the newest positions of the infantry. He himself left upon receiving an order from his brigade commander, leaving no trophies to the enemy.”

In 1918, as the commander of the Armenian Artillery Brigade, Khachatur Araratov participated in the Sardarapat battle (May 21-28, 1918). In October 1918, he led the commission on the establishment of the Armenian-Turkish border.

In March 1919, Araratov was promoted to major general of artillery of the Armenian army. From March 1919 to April 1920, he served as the Minister of War of the Republic of Armenia.

In 1920, Araratov participated in the Armenian-Turkish war. In October 1920, he was captured during the occupation of Kars by the Turks. He was released from captivity at the request of the Soviet government. At the end of 1921, he returned to Soviet Armenia.

In 1923-1925, Araratov was the deputy commander of the Armenian Rifle Division. Then, he headed the military departments in higher educational institutions of Yerevan.

On September 2, 1937, Araratov was arrested on charges of nationalism and was shot in the Avan gorge along with generals Movses Silikov and Dmitry Mirimanov. He would be rehabilitated posthumously.

Valeria Olyunina

Khachatur Gerasimovich Araratov on the fronts of the First World War was an example of fearlessness and genuine heroism.
Christopher Araratov was fluent in Armenian, Russian and French.

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