Boyuk Ayrim

Boyuk Ayrim is a village in the Borchali uezd of the former Tiflis governorate, later in the former Allahverdi (Tumanyan) district, and currently in the Lori province. The provincial centre lies 69 km to the southeast of the town of Boyuk Garakilsa (Vanadzor), on the left side of the Iravan-Tiflis highway, and at a height of 690 m above sea level.

The village was inhabited by 171 Azerbaijanis in 1886, 223 in 1897, 390 in 1908 and 381 Azerbaijanis in 1914. In 1918–1920 the Azerbaijanis were ousted by the Armenian Bolshevik units. The surviving Azerbaijanis managed to return to their own village only after Soviet power had been established in present-day Armenian territory. The village was inhabited only by Azerbaijanis: 454 in 1922, 282 in 1926, 391 in 1931, 530 in 1939, 550 in 1959 and 815 Azerbaijanis in 1970. In different years (1873, 1886, 1908, 1897, 1922, 1926, 1931) the census states that only Azerbaijanis lived in the village. However, this historical fact has been distored and the “The Dictionary of the Toponyms of Armenia and Surrounding Provinces” presents the Azerbaijani inhabitants of the village as an Armenian population. In 1950 the village was merged with the Shnogh fruit-growing Sovkhoz. In November 1988 the Azerbaijani inhabitants of the village were ousted by the state of Armenia. At present, the village is solely inhabited by Armenians.

The toponym was coined by combining the word “boyuk” denoting a distinguishing feature in Azerbaijani toponymy and the ethnonym “Ayrim” which is a phonetic variant of the name of the Oghuz tribe Eymur (Eymir, İmir). M.Valili (Baharli) considers the tribe of Ayrim as a branch of the Seljuks.

At present, the village is referred to as “Mets Ayrum”. According to the law “On the administrative-territorial division of the Republic of Armenia” dated 7 November 1995, it was integrated into the administrative territory of the Lori province.

Geographic coordinates: latitude: 41°10′ N., longitude: 44°49′ E.