Photographs. Ruins of Horomayr Monastery

November Highlands: Hiking to Horomayr Monastery

The architectural complex of Saint Nshan monastery of Horomayr, first mentioned in the 7th century, consists of two parts – the lower one situated on the cliffs of the Debed canyon, and the upper one on the vast plateu above. The monastery derives its name from the main church of the lower part – the Saint Nshan, built in 1187 by princes Zakare and Ivane. Its bell-tower was built later in 1290. Other structures of the lower part of the complex are the ruins of Saint Arakyal chapel (1216), a small chapel built in 1201, to the north is the square-schemed chapel built in 1301. The cemetery of the monastery with cross-stones and tombs dating back to 13th century is spread around the complex.
The ruins of monastery of Horomayr, Lori province, Armenia

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Photographs. Ruins of Bardzrakash Saint Gregory Monastery: Part Two

Photographs. Ruins of Bardzrakash Saint Gregory Monastery: Part One

Built throughout the 10th-13th centuries, this monastic complex was named after the first patriarch of the Armenian Apostolic Church, Saint Gregory the Illuminator who baptised Armenia in 301 CE. The remains of the monastery include the Church of St. Gregory – a vaulted hall type of church built in the 10th century, the three-nave basilica of Sourb Astvatsatsin (Holy Mother of God) built in 1221 by the son of Prince Sargis Mamikonyan, Marzpan, its narthex with carved reliefs (1247), the Chapel of Sourb Harutyun (Holy Ressurection) built in 1234 by Hovhannes Vardapet (vardaped is a well-educated archimandrite who holds a Doctorate of Theology) and his brother, and the Mamikonians’ (an aristocratic Armenian dynasty) cemetery.
Ruins of Bardzrakash Saint Gregory Monastery, Dsegh village, Lori province, Armenia

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Photographs. Ruins of Bardzrakash Saint Gregory Monastery: Part One

We learn about the Bardzrakash Saint Gregory monastery from our hosts at Patvakan B&B in the village of Dsegh. So, on the second day of our journey we follow the muddy road to the outskirts of the village until we reach a rusty sign indicating the direction to the ruins of the monastery. A narrow path leads us down into the forest. Dry leaves rustle underfoot. Not long after we notice the monastery behind the trees. Built throughout the 10th-13th centuries, this monastic complex was named after the first patriarch of the Armenian Apostolic Church, Saint Gregory the Illuminator who baptised Armenia in 301 CE. The remains of the monastery include the Church of St. Gregory – a vaulted hall type of church built in the 10th century, the three-nave basilica of Sourb Astvatsatsin (Holy Mother of God) built in 1221 by the son of Prince Sargis Mamikonyan, Marzpan, its narthex with carved reliefs (1247), the Chapel of Sourb Harutyun (Holy Resurrection) built in 1234 by Hovhannes Vardapet (vardaped is a well-educated archimandrite who holds a Doctorate of Theology) and his brother, and the Mamikonians’ (an aristocratic Armenian dynasty) cemetery.
Ruins of Bardzrakash Saint Gregory Monastery, Dsegh village, Lori province, Armenia

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Photographs. Ruins of Forty Infants Monastery

According to the scripture found on the facade, the monastery of Forty Infants in the village of Dsegh, Lori Province, Armenia, was consecrated in 1256 by the Abbot of the Haghpat monastery, father Hamazasp. Back in the old days, it was a rather large monastic complex that consisted of several buildings, including the main church, the vicarage, the dwelling areas, and other structures of which very little survived up to this day. Built in the years of 1241-1256 the main church was rectangular in its shape, with a domed hall.
Landscape view of Forty infants monastery in the Debed canyon, Lori Province, Armenia

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Photographs. Makaravank Monastery

The legend goes that a certain craftsman named Makar built the Makaravank monastery together with his son. As the walls were growing higher, Makar was spending nights on the walls of the monastery, while his son was preparing the stones for him. One day he noticed that the stones and the patterns carved into them now looked different. When Makar found out that his son passed away, he committed suicide jumping off the church’s top. The villagers buried him under the walls of the monastery and named it after the craftsman – Makaravank (monastery of Makar).
The main gates of the Makaravank monastery, Tavush province, Armenia

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