Yervand Alexander Lalayan (March 25, 1864, Alexandropol, Yerevan Province, Russian Empire – February 24, 1931, Yerevan, USSR), Armenian ethnographer, folklore collector, archaeologist.
In 1885 he graduated from the Nersisyan School in Tbilisi (Georgia) and worked in Akhaltsikhe, Akhalkalaki and Alexandropol as a teacher. In 1894, after graduating from the Department of Social Sciences of the University of Geneva, he received the degree of Candidate of Social Sciences and worked for 6 months with the Mkhitaryans of Vienna. He taught at the Shushi Diocesan School returning to Transcaucasus in 1895-1897. Combining here with the best scientific forces of the time (Manuk Abeghyan, Toros Toramanyan, Hrachya Acharyan, Leo, Leon Melikset-Bek, S. Lisitsyan, Kh. Samuelyan, S. Zelinsky), he started to create the “Ethnographic Magazine” (the first book (published in 1896).
He organized the Ethnographic Publishing Company on November 21, 1900 in Tbilisi (Georgia), and the Armenian Ethnographic Society in 1906. The museum organized by the company was moved from Tbilisi (Georgia) to Yerevan in 1921 by Lalayan’s efforts. Lalayan became the first head of the museum. His “Javakhk”, “Varanda”, “Sisian”, “Ghapan”, “Gandzak province”, “Borchalu province”, “Vaspurakan”, “Goghtan province”, “Vayots Dzor” are regularly published in “Ethnographic Magazine”, “Nakhichevan or Nakhchavan Police District”, “Zangezur”, “Nor Bayazet Province or Gegharkunik”, works and numerous articles. Lalayan has collected and published extremely valuable folklore materials, written thousands of tales, fables and proverbs. Extensive excavations were carried out in Sharur-Daralagyaz, Nakhichevan, Nor Bayazet provinces, Shresh hill, Nizh-Vardashen villages of Nukhi province, Elar (Abovyan).
In order to present the Armenian material culture to the general public, Lalayan published 3 photo albums dedicated to the monuments of Vayots Dzor, Vaspurakan and New Bayazet, with explanations in Armenian, Russian and French. Has collected and published protocols.