Toleu Kobdikov

Kobdikov Toleu is an akyn of Kazakhstan, a member of the Union of Writers of Kazakhstan.

Folk akyn Toleu Kobdikov was born in the village of Barshatas in the Shubartau district of the Semipalatinsk region (now East Kazakhstan region). His mother and mother’s father, Sabyrbai, who lived in the 19th century, were akyns-improvisers. Kobdikov’s maternal grandfather, Sabyrbai Aktailakuly, is the famous Kazakh akyn. Sabyrbai’s poetic traditions were inherited by his daughter Kuandyk and grandson Toleu Kobdikov. His mother Kuandyk was an educated woman at that time. She composed poems, wrote music to them, participated in aitys, met with Abai. She was considered as a friend of Abai and competed with him in aitys. Until the end of her life, she carefully kept in memory the verses of Abai. Toleu inherited from his mother a talent and love for poetry.

Toleu saw Abai in his youth. Repeatedly met with the poet, wrote poetry, and considered himself as a student of Abai. The manuscripts of Toleu Kobdikov are preserved, where he warmly describes his meetings with the poet. He wrote his first poems, “Otanym”, “Kazakhstan”, “Shar Kalasyna”, at age 12. In these works, love for the native land, the native land is praised.

In 1922, he was repressed, served time, and then hid from persecution in the Altai Territory, where he was found on behalf of Mukhtar by the grandson of Abai Arkhat Iskakov. The poet spent ten long years (1924-1934) in Karkaraly prison. In 1937, Toleu’s son, Kulzhanbek, was also arrested as an enemy of the people, who was sentenced to 7 years only because the village teacher expressed the idea that village teachers schoolchildren must also study at institutes. The work of T. Kobdikov got its peak in the years of Soviet power. In his poems of these years, he sang the successes of socialist construction in Kazakhstan, the happy life of the Soviet people, the Communist Party. In the city of Charsk (now Shar), Toleu Kobdikov lived since 1941. Here his children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren took root.

The skill of Toleu Kobdikov as akyn and improviser was especially pronounced in 1943-1946, when he took an active part in the republican and regional aitys. The first work of Toleu Kobdikov “To my sons, heroes” was published in the regional newspaper Ekpindy on July 25, 1943. During this year, the poems “In the foothills of Akshoky”, “The wide steppe”, “Our land will be cleansed of the enemy” and others were published on the pages of the regional and republican newspapers. In his songs, the poet praises the homeland, the friendship of peoples, and selfless work in the rear.

In 1948, Toleu Kobdikov was admitted to the Union of Writers of Kazakhstan, and in 1954, in the year of his death, he was awarded the title of “Folk Akyn of Kazakhstan”. Along with samples of folk literature, Kobdikov read and studied written literature a lot. His works, reflecting the reality of Soviet Kazakhstan, were published in newspapers and magazines, published in separate collections: “Alyp Kushti Otanym” (1951), “Shygarmalary” (1956).

Four poetry collections – this is the result of the creative work of our countryman. The last book was published after the death of akyn, in 1975. In 2018, within the framework of the project of the book series “Abai Alemi”, Kobdikov’s works “Shygarmalary: Atandym oz tusymda akyn Tuleu” were published.

Until the last days of his life, Toleu Kobdikov lived in Charsk. November 23, 1954, not having lived to see its 80th anniversary, the akyn died. According to his will, the akyn was buried near Charsk, on a high hill.


  1. Ismailov E. Akyny.- Alma-Ata: Kazakh State Publishing House, 1957.- p.340
  2. Writers and poets of the Semey region: Bibliographic index. – Semey: Publishing House “House of the Press”, 2015. – P.45-47.