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GEGHARD MONASTERY

Geghard Monastery is one of the oldest monasteries in Armenia. It was built immediately after the adoption of Christianity as a state religion. In the placec of the pagan temple, the Geghard Monastery was built by Grigor the Illuminator. This is a complex complex of rock-cut compartments, which includes two-story stone temples and a church. The full name - Geghardavank literally means "Monastery of the Spear." The name comes from the spear of Longinus, which pierced the body of Jesus Christ on the Cross. According to the information, it was brought to Armenia by the Apostle Thaddeus, among many other relics. Now the spear is exhibited at the Etchmiadzin Museum.

The monks here provided shelter and food for belated travelers who did not dare to pass through the gorge in the dark.



The monastery was attacked several times by arabs, and then by the seljuk turks, who burned it in 923.

The fortress is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. The cliffs surrounding the monastery are part of the Gokht River Gorge, which, like the monastery complex, is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. Some of the churches of the monastery complex are completely hollowed out inside the rocks, while others are complex structures consisting of both walled compartments and rooms hollowed deep inside the cliff. On the territory of the monastery complex there are numerous carved on stone walls and freestanding cross stones - traditional Armenian stone memorial steles with crosses.

Due to its proximity to Yerevan, Geghard has become one of the most accessible sights for tourists, even with a lack of time.

 

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