The Balyan Family and the Linguistic Culture of a Parisian Education | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 5, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 2045-5895
  • E-ISSN: 2045-5909



This article documents the Parisian education of two Armenian-Ottoman architects in Paris in the middle of the nineteenth century. Following Nigog˘os and Serkis Balyan to the Collège Sainte-Barbe, the École Centrale and the École des Beaux-Arts, it traces aspects of the education they were exposed to there. The article then moves on to investigate where the impact of this education can be seen in the specific architectural works of these individuals. Showing how the architects manipulated their Parisian education to express an Ottoman renaissance, the article stresses how these Ottoman subjects were not creating imitative works but were creative actors in their own right, engaging in an original way with what they had learned, and pragmatically refashioning it for their particular setting.


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  • Article Type: Article
Keyword(s): architecture; Armenian; nineteenth century; Ottoman; Paris; Revivalism
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