The people of Shusha made it the pearl of the Caucasus, the cradle of our culture, the mugham-singing heart of Azerbaijan
Yusif Vazir Chamanzaminli (1887-1943) was a prominent Azerbaijani writer and public figure.
Chamanzaminli was born in Shusha and spent his childhood and youth in this town. “Imagine a town in the mountains, shrouded in greenery in spring and summer; and in mist and snow in autumn and winter. This is my town.” – Chamanzaminli, who always remembered Shusha with love and pride, wrote in his memoirs.
Shusha and Karabakh themes occupy the central place in Chamanzaminli’s works. One can find a detailed description of late 19th and early 20th centuries Karabakh in his novels “Twenty Years of My Life”, “Copybook of a Youth” etc. These novels can be of great interest for the researchers learning the history of Karabakh.
Chamanzaminli’s masterpiece novel “Between the two fires” (“In the Blood”) is also dedicated to Karabakh and describes the history of the Karabakh Khanate of Ibrahim Khan, as well as the heroic defense of Shusha from the invasion of Shah Qajar in 1795.
Chamanzaminli is also claimed to be the author of famous novel “Ali and Nino”, written by an anonymous writer under the pen name Gurban Said.
Chamanzaminli was also a prominent political figure, first ambassador of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic (1918-1920) in Turkey. After the Soviet invasion he had to live for several years in exile. His yearning for his country made him to return after a while but the Soviet government always persecuted him for his past. In 1940 in the height of the Stalin repressions, he was arrested and exiled to the village of Sukhobezvodnoye in Gorki (N.Novgorod) region of Russia. Chamanzaminli could not resist the deprivations of the life in exile and died in 1943 after a long period of illness.