Sultanmakhmut Toraigyrov

Sultanmakhmut Toraigyrov is an outstanding Kazakh poet of XX century, the follower of Abai. He was born in Bayanaul District of Pavlodar Region. His father Aubakir was poor but educated. His mother died when the child was only 1 year old.

Despite of difficult living conditions his father always tried to find time to teach his son. Since early years he had been teaching him to write and read. In 1902 his father brought his son to auyl school. Sultanmakhmut had been studying in the school for 5 years learning the basics of Islam and being strongly drawn towards poetry.

At 14 Sultanmakhmut created his first pieces of poetry that represented witty portraying of the people that lived near him.

In 1908 – 1910 the young man continues studying in Bayanaul medrese and dreams about education in Russian. Taking the decision to fulfill his dream, in 1912 he comes to Troitsk town. Due to the circumstances he enters another religious educational institution where the education is in Arabic. The Russian language and literature is studied by the future poet on his own. In a short period of time he becomes able to read works of Russian writers in their language.

At the beginning of 1913 Sultanmakhmut is forced to give up his education in Troitsk because of tuberculosis. Till the end of the year he has been treated in Bayanaul. Then he returns to Troitsk where starts working in the editorial office of the “Aikap” magazine. He creates new poetic works in which he appeals to the youth to study.

In 1914 Sultanmakhmut Toraigyrov wrote the novel “Kamar-sulu” that became one of the most significant works of Kazakh literature of the pre-revolutionary period.

In 1915 he finishes his poem “Who is guilty?”

At the end of 1916 he studies in Tomsk.

In March of 1917 he comes to Semipalatinsk, but his health becomes worse and makes him return to Bayanaul. Despite of his illness he organizes the study group “Shon” where he teaches young people.

In 1918 such significant works as the poem “The Life Lost” and the article “Socialism” are created. Many new pieces of poetry appeared.

During the Revolution Toraigurov was appointed a representative of the revolutionary committee of Shiderty Volost. He actively participates in the work of Soviets.

New acute condition in 1920 led to Sultanmakhmut Toraigyrov’s death (March 21, 1920).

The outstanding poet and the prominent figure of Kazakh culture, the active fighter for his people’s progress, he died at the age of 27…