"Ode (to the) City of Ani"

This Armenian poem dates from the mid-19th century. This particular version of it is reproduced from a guidebook to Ani published in Constantinople in 1910. An approximate translation of the poem into English follows below it. In this 1910 book the poem's author is stated to be unknown (an "Armenian minstrel"), but in some other sources it is attributed to Vardapet Alexander Araratian.

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Ani Kaghak sits and weeps,
There is no one to say; "Don't cry, don't cry".
You think it's nothing, let her stay and cry,
Oh! When will I hear "Don't cry, don't cry"?

I am on fire with so much pain, I burn,
I have no one loyal to trust.
Who would approach this wretch?
Who will ever say "Don't cry, don't cry"?


Oh, Armenian lad, have pity on me,
Look upon your Ani.
You with no mercy, have I not cried enough?
Have you no sorrow for Ani?

Days of mourning and fear I have seen,
My eyes blinded with tears.
To be an orphan has always been my lot,
Fortune has forsaken me.

I have lost many a king,
The owls now gather around my head.
They sing "Ani is gone
Ani, orphaned and destroyed".

I am Ani, once populous,
Now I am a bitter ruin.
My moans, my sobs, my cries,
Like motherless orphans.

Once I was unequalled,
Your City of the east.
Now I am ruined, cast to the ground,
Sitting alone, weeping aloud.

You came, you saw, and now you leave,
With many tears you bid "goodbye".
For the sake of God, do not forget
When you approach our Masis...

Tell to my brave Ararat
"Poor Ani has fallen and weeps".
When will that mountain give me the tidings,
"Oh my Ani, you have wept enough"?

An Armenian Minstrel ("Hay Ashugh")