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Ancient Armenian City - Ani


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#1 SirunTgha

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 02:13 PM



Now we often talk about everything and anything that is Armenian but did you know that (hey even if you know don't spoil the fun of those who don't tongue.gif ) that once upon a time there was a huge Armenian city called Ani! Armenian chroniclers (Historians) first mentioned Ani in the 5th century AD. Ani had a population of 100,000 - 200,000 people and was the rival of Constantinople!!! Located on now Turkish soil, very unfortunetly (Kars Province) mad.gif it has become deserted. Also called the "City of 1001 Churches". They described it as a strong fortress built on a hilltop and a possession of the Armenian Kamsarakan dynasty. If I had to travel, that's where I'd go.

(Source: Wikipedia.org)

Those who are interested (I mean how can you not be!??!) to learn more about this ancient Armenian jewel, go to http://www.virtualani.org/citymap.htm

The picture you see is the West side wall, also called the Nicole wall.

On a more personal note: I always tried to silence any feeling of racism but frankly it pisses me off to the highest level that this city is located on Turkish soil, who by the way are letting unprofessional archeologists conduct all sort of works and diggs, and if you read further you'll see that great damage has been done to the city's remains during the period of 2006-2007.


And since i'm so cool, I got you the coordinates so you can check it on the google satellite map (40° 30' N, 43° 34'E)

Anyways! I hope you find this interesting.

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#2 gamavor

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 03:00 PM

QUOTE
there was a huge Armenian city called Ani!


No kidding! smile.gif


Dude, before posting anything take the time to search a little the forum. smile.gif

#3 SirunTgha

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 05:18 PM

QUOTE (gamavor @ Feb 6 2008, 03:00 PM)
No kidding! smile.gif


Dude, before posting anything take the time to search a little the forum. smile.gif


Not really.

#4 garmag

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 05:38 PM

QUOTE (SirunTxa @ Feb 6 2008, 05:18 PM)
Not really.



I am not abasing your enthuisiasm, but instead of 1001 churches, if Ani had just 30-40 forts as defenses and a few less churches.... maybe you and I would have been living in ANI TODAY.

#5 SirunTgha

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 05:56 PM

QUOTE (garmag @ Feb 6 2008, 05:38 PM)
I am not abasing your enthuisiasm, but instead of 1001 churches, if Ani had just 30-40 forts as defenses and a few less churches.... maybe you and I would have been living in ANI TODAY.


Maybe, from reading your other topics you're slightly against Christianity. But maybe, if not for the 1001 we wouldn't be a united nation as we are today, no matter where in the world? Ever thought of that? I live in an Armenian diaspora, and it's the Church, our Christian church that brought us together, not because we're religious, but because of the spirit of patriotism that it offers.

Edited by SirunTxa, 06 February 2008 - 05:59 PM.


#6 garmag

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 07:25 PM

QUOTE (SirunTxa @ Feb 6 2008, 06:56 PM)
Maybe, from reading your other topics you're slightly against Christianity. But maybe, if not for the 1001 we wouldn't be a united nation as we are today, no matter where in the world? Ever thought of that? I live in an Armenian diaspora, and it's the Church, our Christian church that brought us together, not because we're religious, but because of the spirit of patriotism that it offers.



I happen to be a Babig and my Babig was a derhayr. I was also in Antelias monastery to become one...
I was lucky to be inquisitive and read as often as I could lay my hands on all writings about beleifs...I got out in time.
Went to Jerusalem, Jaipur,Kyoto, Mecca, Etchmiadzin, seeking a sense of what constitudes a religion...

I am still searching, as I refuse to become fanatically involved and take sides, in only one of the flavours!
There were many a war waged in His name, on the mouth of opposing armies.....
They all profess the way for the salvation of the human soul. This my friend is definitely in need of salvation.....

May I clarify one thing that is a living fact today?
I have lived all my life in several Diasporan countries.
Unfortunatly it was the Armenian church that created factions amongst Armenians.
Since 1930s and (1950s, I was there) Antelias and Etchmiadzin have NOT managed to come to peaceful arrangements in the partition of the Armenian churches authorities' on various Diasporan communities.
Hence, FOUR churches exist in your community of Montreal and Laval. Two belonging to Etchmiadzin and two to Antelias!
We have had as many as four Gatoghigosses at one time..... Was this a form of unity?
BTW the church professes universality not Patriotism.








#7 Armenak

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 07:35 PM

QUOTE (garmag @ Feb 6 2008, 05:25 PM)
Hence, FOUR churches exist in your community of Montreal and Laval. Two belonging to Etchmiadzin and two to Antelias!

I'm not from there but I think there's also an Armenian Catholic church.

#8 phantom22

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 07:42 PM

Hey Gamavor. The kid is exuding about his new discovery about his heritage. Let him feel good and want to to share it with others. Again, some of you do not understand what it like is to grow up in a totally odar area void of Armenians.


QUOTE (gamavor @ Feb 6 2008, 03:00 PM)
No kidding! smile.gif


Dude, before posting anything take the time to search a little the forum. smile.gif

Edited by phantom22, 06 February 2008 - 07:42 PM.


#9 Ashot

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Posted 06 February 2008 - 09:00 PM

QUOTE (gamavor @ Feb 6 2008, 01:00 PM)
No kidding! smile.gif


Dude, before posting anything take the time to search a little the forum. smile.gif


I did take the time to search the forum - the bad thing is when you type the word ANI it doesn't let you search for anything because you have to have more then 4 letters.

I tried to read topic after topic but please man my idea will skip my mind if we try to search for the whole thread for one topic, and you know better that there is too many topics!!!
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#10 garmag

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Posted 07 February 2008 - 12:18 AM

QUOTE (Armenak @ Feb 6 2008, 08:35 PM)
I'm not from there but I think there's also an Armenian Catholic church.


You are right.
I was naming only the "arakelagan" churches...
There is also protestant Armenian "joghovaran"...never mind Mormons, Jehova witnesses and some Jewish Armenian that I met, he had converted! oy veee.....etc. etc....



#11 Ashot

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 08:53 PM

ANI -- Means Fire and Flame, or more precisely a Fiery Goddess. So let the Great City of Ani be an Eternal Flame, in the hearts of all Armenians, in order that she burns the flame of freedom in their hearts and souls and Becomes the Phoenix of Rebirth... Let the heart of the Armenian nation burn bright, for that which burns radiates Light -- Faith -- so that the coming days will be luminous -- after -- our New Life.
-- Avetik' Isahakian
1902, July 4, written amongst the ruins of Ani


#12 SirunTgha

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 08:56 PM

QUOTE (Ashot @ Feb 11 2008, 09:53 PM)
ANI -- Means Fire and Flame, or more precisely a Fiery Goddess. So let the Great City of Ani be an Eternal Flame, in the hearts of all Armenians, in order that she burns the flame of freedom in their hearts and souls and Becomes the Phoenix of Rebirth... Let the heart of the Armenian nation burn bright, for that which burns radiates Light -- Faith -- so that the coming days will be luminous -- after -- our New Life.
-- Avetik' Isahakian
1902, July 4, written amongst the ruins of Ani

Beautiful.

#13 Ashot

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 09:22 PM

ANI, the splendid city of Bagratid Armenia, at its zenith, in the Xth century, had a population of more than 100,000 citizens, which during the Middle Ages was an impressive number of residents. Ani was a castle and an outpost from the Vth to the IXth century. In the Xth century, Ani became the capital of the restored Kingdom of Armenia under the royal House of Bagrat. Beginning from the Xth century, the city became a great center of trade, commerce and culture, where caravans from distant and far away lands of the Far East, including China and India stopped, sold and traded good, often continuing further on towards the West, to the cities of Byzantine Empire and Europe.

Ani was hailed as the 'The City of 1001 Churches' by the contemporary historians. This number was significant and symbolic of the fact that the City of Ani had numerous beautiful churches of breathtaking grandeur architecture, built by the talented Armenian masons and craftsmen. Armenian master builders like Master Trdat (Tiridates in Latin), the Chief Architect of the Armenian kings and catholicoi (active from the second half of the Xth century to the first half of the XIth) who became renowned throughout Armenia after he designed and built a number of churches and cathedrals throughout Armenia, most notably in Ani. He is credited with the erection of the Church of Argina (973-77), Ani's Mother Cathedral (989-1001 - 12 years to complete the great temple - by far the Master's magnum opus) and the Cathedral of Saint Gregory the Illuminator (1001-10) in the Gagkashen (named after King Gagik) district of the city.

He is also credited by some scholars with building the Haghpat Monastery of the Surb Nshan (Holy Symbol), the Amenap'rkich' - the Church of the Savior in Sanahin, the Church of Marmashen and also the Church of the Savior and the Walls of Smbatashen, both in Ani. After an earthquake rocked the Byzantine capital of Constantinople, the dome of the marvelous Cathedral of Hagia Sofia (Church of the Divine Wisdom - consecrated by the Emperors to the Eternal Feminine principle) partially collapsed. The Emperor was quick to summon Trdat to restore the dome of the great church, knowing well that the master architect and builder was the best choice for such a difficult task to restore the most loved cathedral in all of Byzantium. It took him almost 4 years (989-92) to restore the dome to its former splendor...

...Today the great City of Ani is in ruins... a ghost town, a mere shadow of the once world-renowned splendor of 1000 years ago. The "nick-name" of "ghost town" was not coined by this author, dear reader. It is the name given to abandoned ruins of Ani, in the Turkish travel brochures printed by the Turkish government. It will be impossible for the traveler who is provided with these brochures to find the word 'Armenian' or 'Armenia,' be it in historic or contemporary context. The once crowded streets are no more.

Only the decaying remains of the magnificent ruins give the visitor a clue and a glimpse into a time of civilization, building and advancement, a time when Ani was called the Great Mother City. Nowadays Armenians from the other side of the Arax river, the artificially natural state boundary between Republic of Armenia and Western Armenia, only few miles away watch and hope that someday they can once again return and rebuild their beloved city. For no one else will care for the rapidly vanishing city, which can only be restored and once again become a center of Life, Learning and Civilization by the creative people who built it.



#14 Ashot

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 09:25 PM

The great city of Ani is very dear to my heart, for my forefathers lived here many centuries ago. According, to the Nazaryan [lit. Seer -- Azgn Višapac‛ -- Supreme Scion] family genealogical historian, Eli Nazarian (Nazareannerĕ, The Nazaryans, published in Beirut in 1988), one of the last families to leave Ani, was the family of the master goldsmith Nazar Nazaruni in 1475. The centuries-long tradition of master goldsmiths continued all the way to the present with, two of my eldest uncles -- Andranik and Gevork -- continuing the excellent tradition of our ancestors, my Father -- the fourth son of five brothers -- became a surgeon. According to E. Nazarian, the Nazaruni family later on branched out and formed the rather populous supra-family of Nazarians, spread throughout Eastern Armenia, Western Armenia and Cilician Armenia. Some branches of the family eventually established themselves in Artsakh, the Easternmost Gates of Eastern Armenia. The Shahnazarian meliks during late Middle Ages formed one of the 5 melikdoms or noble houses of Artsakh. Others such as Gyulnazarians (adopting the Rose -- the eternal female principle -- as the Family Symbol) established themselves in the famous merchant city of Julfa, in the Nakhichevan province of Eastern Armenia. The established close ties with the Persian Shahs. Later on some members of the family moved to New Julfa in Iran. Another famous branch of the Nazaryan/Nazarian family were the Lazarians/Lazaryans (some also used the Ghazarian last name -- l-gh transition), who by the XVIIIth century had established themselves in Moscow and St. Petersburg, and were granted and recognized as prominent nobles of the Russian Empire by the Romanoffs.

The Lazarians were philanthropists when it came to aiding the poor and needy. They worked tirelessly to see the liberation of Armenia from foreign yoke and hoped for an eventual restoration of the Armenian State. They build, new schools, seminaries, churches and established a university that became an important Armenian spiritual and as well as educational center. The Nazarian/Nazaryan family was famous for its active role in the trade and merchant business, names such as Nazar the mayor of Jugha and Manuk the treasurer of Julfa, sons of Nazar Nazaruni established themselves in the Persian royal court and were respected throughout the region by the people of the province of Goghtan, Nakhichevan in Eastern Armenia. It is from this branch that my ancestry of the Nazaryan family derives (tracing it with the genealogical charts provided by Eli Nazarian, and the relative of Eli, from my extended family, that gave me the book - my direct lineage being traced to as far back as around 1750), who in the XVIIIth and XIXth century moved to Aintab and K‛ilis in Cilician Armenia, where they lived and worked until the early 1920s of the XXth century...

...In 1919 the Armenians, survivors of the horrific Genocide at the hands of the Turks hoped to build, a New Armenia, an Armenia Reborn... During this period in the East, another group of surviving Armenians were fighting off the Turkish armed criminal gangs that had forever seized being a disciplined army but were more like a pack of vultures looking for "easy" preys (prospect of looting of goods without actually working, rape, kidnapping of women being their chief motives of the Turkish "army" in killing Armenians in the East and the West.)

Meanwhile, in the West, in Cilician Armenia, brave Armenian men and women fought for their survival and for Life itself. The Turkish brigands launched a massive offensive against the Armenians of Cilicia to "finish" the job of the Genocide. One of the heroic self-defense battles that took place from 1920-21, was the Battle of Aintab (the Turks later made the massacre a "national holiday" and renamed the city "Brave Aintab..."), which lasted for a total of three hundred and fourteen days.

The Turks thought that when the French troops pull out of Cilicia, the Armenian population would leave with the French who were viewed as a "protective" force that would possibly serve as a occupying power, if given a mandate to administer the region by the Allied General Command. They were wrong. Many of the Armenians served in the French Foreign Legion, in the elite, almost exclusively Armenian corps -- the Armenian Legion or the Eastern Legion (fought primarily in severe battles for Near East). The memories of the Armenian Genocide, where most of their relatives were slaughtered were still fresh in their minds and they were simply full of severe antipathy toward the armed Turks.

The Armenians of Aintab as well as other Cilician cities decided to die fighting rather then surrender or leave their ancestral homeland. A fighting unit of only 750 men was organized most of whom were experienced fighters and had previously served in the Foreign Legion and as well as local militia was formed and the major entries to the city were barricaded. The small Armenian force had to fight enormous odds and stood against a Turkish Army. Just as Armenians crushed and with it the myth of one of the "best" Turkish Armies ( The so called "Galibolu" Army that supposedly was never defeated by the Allies) in the life and death Battle of Sardarapat so did the Aintabts'is fought and defeated the "battle hardened" (they were expecting an "easy kill," when men were not there to defend the butchery of women and children) Turks of the Armenian Genocide ( after the Turks themselves admitted that they preferred to fight defenseless women and children then Armenians in arms). The Turks were mostly looking for the promised war booty and not seeing the serious danger of shortening their life with such Turkish "military" way of life. Led by the incompetent and weak leadership of corrupt Turkish officers they were defeated by a militia of determined Armenian men and women whose backs were turned to the wall. Many members of my family participated in the fighting, my grandmother was wounded while rushing ammunition and food to her brother on the barricades.

The Aintabtsis did held out (thanks to mostly the men of the Legion) until they were asked by the temporary government of Cilicia to leave Aintab and withdraw towards the Syrian border. After many of the Cilician cities fell to numerically overwhelming Turkish forces, who paid a high price and lost thousands of men in their occupation drive. Aintapts'i and the branched out Kilistsi Nazaryans along with many of their Cilician compatriots left Aintab and settled in the Syrian border town of Azaz (Azez). In 1946, in the wake of the Great Repatriation drive, my grandfather Hakop Nazaryan with his wife Ovsanna and five sons, Andranik the eldest (the name implying the firstborn...and...the great Defender and National Hero -- Major General Andranik Ozanian), Gevork [or Gēorg in classical form], Grigor, Parkev (my Father) and Arsen (the youngest -- Sarkis' father) and their sister Alice repatriated to Soviet Armenia. My father was 10 years old when they repatriated to Armenia. He enrolled in the Banerit [Young Workers] school No. 11. He continued his higher education by being accepted in the Yerevan's prestigous School of Medicine [one of the best in the Soviet Union] where he fell in love with one of his fellow female medical student colleagues.-- Aida Khachatryan -- a Yerevan localite originally from a proud highlander stock of warrior-teachers of the ancient Syunik province, more commonly known as Zangezur. The initially platonic relationship blossomed into a romance and eventually a marriage in 1969. I was born seven years later in -- on -- November 22, 1976. My mother through these years preserved the ID patch -- that reads 'Nazaryan - its a Boy' -- that was placed on my hand immediately after birth. Parkev was destined to become an outstanding surgeon -- a Healer of people -- performing a Herculean average of 300 operations per year.

Thus the circle of the Nazaryan family came to its completion. The Great city of Ani and Eastern Armenia were once home to my ancestors starting with Nazar Nazaruni of Ani and the later the Nazaryans of Goghtan (Gołt'an) and Artsakh, with some in the XVIIth century branching out and establishing themselves in New Jugha and Isfahan.



#15 Ashot

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 09:27 PM

EARLY ORIGINS: GROWTH AND EXPANSION

The history of this great city began in a more distant place, quite afar from the location on the left bank of the Arax river in a close proximity to the city of Kars. The name Ani comes from the ancient Armenian city of Ani, located in the Bardzr Haik or Upper Armenia province of Greater Armenia. The city of Ani located in Upper Armenia was a sacred place of worship of the pagan gods of Armenia. On the current location of Ani on the Left Bank of the River Akhurian, archaeologists have found remains of an early bronze culture and as well as burial shrines within man-made hilltops or blurs dating back to the VIIIth and VIIth centuries B.C. Ani is first mentioned by Armenian historians Ełishēi and Łazar P'arpets'i in the Vth century A.D. as a strong and impregnable castle built on a hilltop in possession of the Kamsarakan nobility. The castle was built at a strategically fortified point near a chain of mountain cliffs which formed a natural obstacle and a barrier against possible sieges. From the north, the castle was fortified by a thick, long wall. The shift in the possession of the city took place in the IXth century A.D. when Ashot Bagratuni, the supreme lord of Armenia, bought the castle along with the nearby estates of Arsharunik' and Shirak, from the House of Kamsarakan.

Under the rule of the increasingly growing power of the Bagratids, who by the late IXth century had liberated Armenia from Caliphate's rule and restored the Armenian Monarchy, Ani became an expanding and growing city. In 961 A.D. the Bagratids proclaimed Ani as the new capital of Armenia, replacing the earlier Kars as the Mother City. In 964 A.D. King Ashot III erected new, bigger and better walls that surrounded the capital, thus giving Ani a more formidable status. By the end of the Xth century, due to the strategically important location of the city and the protection and opportunities offered, a large flow of peasant population made up the growing number of the citizenry. This in its turn gave Ani the necessary man power to become a truly international center of trade and commerce.

The city's famous craftsmen and artisans through their works made Ani a world famous cultural and commercial hub of the period. Merchants and craftsmen flocked to Ani from old cities such as Dvin and Kars, which during this period had to secede their supremacy to Ani. In 989 A.D. to assure and to show the grandeur of Ani King Smbat of the Bagratid Royal House built the second layer of walls around the city making the city virtually invulnerable to an enemy conquest from outside. Many of the noble houses and knights loyal to Bagratid kings built their mansions and palaces such as the Palace of Baron, the great city walls of Smbatashen and Ashotashen which had built-in chapel towers which held mass and gathered the faithful of the city.

New marketplaces, taverns and workshops were built to house and control the flow of traffic of the city. New churches and monasteries were also built by the finest craftsmen and architects of Armenia, (master Trdat being the most notable) who gained fame by the building of the churches such as the splendid and grandeur Church of Gregory the Illuminator built by Tigran Honents, The Church of the Savior and the Beautiful Mother Church of Ani or St. Mary's Church which many travelers called the Jewel of Caucasus.

The construction of the church began during the reign of Smbat II in the year 898 A.D., after thorough planning by the court architect Trdat and was completed during the reign of Gagik I in the year 1001 A.D. The church was covered with beautiful frescos and traditional Armenian ornamental decoration, biblical scenes and the history of the House of Bagrat. The Church was amongst the most notable and large architectural structures in Ani and even the remaining ruins today have a certain allure and majesty.

The city had numerous churches and chapels [hence the symbolic name -- City of 1001 churches] in order to fulfill the spiritual life of tens of thousands of Armenian Christians, who lived in the city. Churches such as the Church of the Apostles, the Church of the Holy Pastor Jesus Christ were also among the most notable, in dimension and function. Many of the architectural marvels of Ani were lost and buried under deep layers of dirt. In late XIXth century and early XXth century a renewed interest in archaeology and architecture, and in particular the culture, the history and the architecture of Ani resulted in a number of expeditions by most notably scholars from the Russian Empire.

This was directly as a result of the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78, in which the Ottoman Empire suffered yet another defeat and was forced to withdraw and the province of Kars became part of the Russian Empire. From this period until first two decades of the XXth century when Kars was part of the Russian Empire and later the First Republic of Armenia, a number of archaeological expeditions took place (most of the archaeological digs in the backward Ottoman Empire were done by Armenian and European archaeologists, this is to a great extent the case to this day).

Excavations and mappings took place after several expeditions by the famous architectural historian, T'oros T'oramanyan, and as well as distinguished armenologist, historian, archaeologist and linguist Nikolai Marr, who first began excavations in 1892, organized the second expedition in 1904.

T'oramanyan's publications of the excavations, including detailed sketches of the ruins and extracted artifacts were meticulously studied by the famous professor of Vienna University, Joseph Strizhigovski, who greatly contributed in restoring and reviving the lost treasure monuments and architectural marvels of Ani with his detailed sketches of the buildings the way they looked in the days of glory. Ani had commercial ties with the cities of the Byzantine Empire, Persia, Southern Russia and Central Asia. Fine china was imported from China, silk, expensive and exotic crystals were brought in from distant lands.

Ani had strong commercial ties with the cities of Cilician Armenia, which during this period had a considerable Armenian population. Armenian fine rugs made of soft wool were famous throughout the ancient world for their beauty and quality. Armenian master jewelers made beautiful and delicate necklaces, rings and earrings of precious stone and rubies of the finest quality and elegance.

#16 Ashot

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 09:30 PM

UNSTABLE TIMES AND DISORDER

Ani's rapid growth and expansion that took place during the rise of Bagratid power and the restoration of the Kingdom, halted with the untimely death of King Gagik I in 1020. King Gagik's two sons, Hovaness-Smbat and Ashot, became entangled in a deadly power struggle for the control of the throne and Kingdom. The conflict and strife brought forward instability and disorder to Ani and other parts of Greater Armenia. The two brothers, after years of fighting agreed to divide the the Kingdom into two parts, both holding the title of the King of Armenia. Ashot, who as reigning monarch became Ashot III, held the larger portion of the Kingdom, including Ani. In 1023 under the Byzantine pressure, Hovaness-Smbat, included in his Will the testimony to pass down that part of the Kingdom that was under his sovereignty to the Byzantine Empire. This in of itself brought a great resentment and caused a furor among Ani's citizenry, both rich and poor.

The turmoil that was going on for more than two decades had by this period taken on catastrophic proportions. In 1042, some of the most notable figures of the aristocracy and the royal court were determined to take decisive action in order to stop the 'diplomatic' transfer of Ani and adjoining lands. Headed by the great military commander and a brilliant tactician, Vahram Pahlavuni, they decided to resist the Byzantine takeover [many within Armenia agitated for this move since Byzantium was considered an Armenian empire by the contemporaries] rather than lose their freedom and power as Byzantine vassals (strategoi).

In 1042, as an ultimate act of defiance to simply hand over the city, the nobles proclaimed a new king, the eighteen year old son of Ashot III, Gagik, who was crowned as Gagik II. The Byzantine Emperor Michael IV and later Constantine Monomachus from the renowned Armenian dynasty, sent the imperial cohorts (the Anatolia legions were made up of the heavy Armenian cavalry and led by Armenian aristocracy fighting for Byzantium) in order to "dethrone the imposter king and exercise king's (Hovaness-Smbat's - G.N.) will."

The Byzantine army besieged the city and unsuccessfully stormed the outer walls several times in order to break in. The three military expeditions of the Byzantine emperors were repelled, the last assault of Anatolia army turned out to be disastrous. In a daring counteroffensive led by Vahram Pahlavuni, the Byzantine forces were routed and decimated, losing more than 20,000 men under the walls of Ani. The heroic defense of the city by the small city garrison and mostly citizen militia under the leadership of Vahram, drove back the remnants of the imperial troops. The huge walls of Ani were a tough nut to crack for the Byzantines.

Seeing that Ani cannot be conquered by force (the stick), the Byzantines began to play the diplomatic game (the carrot) in order to appease some of the prominent leaders of the city. Emperor Constantine, called Gagik II to Constantinople for diplomatic negotiations, giving the Armenian king his "word" that he will not be harmed. Most of the nobles, including Vahram Pahlavuni opposed the decision of the King Gagik II to agree to go to the Byzantine capital. Remembering previous cases of the treacherous "promises" of the Byzantine court. Many Emperors of the Byzantine Empire were of Armenian origin, even an Armenian (Macedonian) dynasty was established, with the powerful Emperors like Leo V (813 - 20) and Basil I, who established the Armenian-Macedonian dynasty in 867.

This however had nothing to do with Armenians and Armenia. The emperors, whether of Armenian origin or not, always placed and pursued the interests of the Byzantine empire at exclusive forefront. Their Armenian descent was virtually a non factor when it came towards the imperial foreign policy in Greater Armenia and/or Cilician Armenia.

Catholicos Peter I Getadardz and some of the leading nobles like Vest Sarkis told Gagik II, that the Christian emperor will not resort to "deceitfulness" if the latter has given his "word." In addition to this "advice," the pro-Byzantine faction, unknowingly to the King and Vahram Pahlavuni, as a symbolic gesture of surrender, sent the keys of the city to Emperor Constantine.

After a prolonged struggle and refusal to sign the ill conceived "agreement," King Gagik II, in 1045 was pressured by the Catholicos under the threat of excommunication to sign the treaty under which Ani and surrounding territories were to become part of the Byzantine Empire. This in effect ended the Bagratid Royal House and the Kingdom of Armenia. The Emperor, in exchange for the handover of the city, promised King Gagik, to grant an "autonomous rule" to Ani. Emperor Constantine also gave King Gagik II small possessions in Cappadocia, including the city of Pisu, the palace of Colon and the adjoining territories.

Many years later, the last Bagratuni monarch, King Gagik II, was killed in the treacherous court intrigue of the imperial capital. With King Gagik's assassination, the Byzantines removed a possible threat and a symbol of decapitated Armenian monarchy. The so-called open city (proclaimed by Catholicos Peter and Vest Sarkis) of Ani was occupied by the Byzantine troops circa 1045. The Byzantines instated the rule of governors strategoi (captains) who became the rulers for most of Greater Armenia, including Ani, which by this time had considerably lost its former prestige as a direct result of the wars and instability that began in the early part of the XIth century.




#17 Ashot

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 09:34 PM

THE FALL OF ANI

The nomadic Seljuk Turks were thrown out of Central Asia and the first waves began to reach Armenia and Asia Minor in the second half of the XIth century. The Byzantines were not successful in checking the advance of the Seljuk hordes. In 1064, the Seljuks, under a prolonged and bloody siege managed to break into the city of Ani. After thoroughly looting the city of its riches, the Seljuk chieftain of Ani, Alp-Arslan sold the city to another Seljuk chief, Abulsuar, in1072. In the Battle of Manazkert (Manzikert) in 1071, the Seljuks scored a decisive victory over the Byzantine forces. Catastrophically for the Byzantines and the highly civilized Near East of the period, the Emperor Romanus Diogenes, who personally led the troops, was taken prisoner. After Manazkert, it was evident that the Seljuks were a serious force to be reckoned with throughout the Near East. Ani was ruled (with interruptions) by the Seljuk Shadadian clan until 1199.

THE MOTHER CATHEDRAL
12 CIRCLES LEADING TO THE CENTER
THE 7TH SIGN OF LIBRA-SCALES OF THE ANCIENT ARMAN ZODIAC
REPRESENTING EARTH AND THE SETTING SUN IS ABOUND
THROUGHOUT TRADITIONAL ARMENIAN ARCHITECTURE AND WAS
PLACED IMMEDIATELY ABOVE WINDOWS [LUSAMUT -- ENTRY POINT OF LIGHT]
INCIDENTALLY OMEGA -- Ω THE LAST 24TH LETTER [OR 8+8+8 CHRIST
CONSCIOUSNESS] OF THE GREEK ALPHABET ESOTERICALLY STANDS FOR
PERFECTION/COMPLETION [ FROM ALPHA -- A -- THE BEGINNING]...
APOTHEOSIS CULMINATING THROUGH DEGREES OF SPIRITUAL ILLUMINATION.

This period marked the downfall of Ani as an important commercial and cultural center. Many master craftsmen and prominent members of the city were killed or captured by the Seljuks. Ani that once was a thriving hub of fine pottery, jewelry and other highly prized artifacts was relegated to a status of a mediocre Seljuk military fortress-outpost. As a result of which, Ani throughout the XIIth century was a primary target for offense and defense. The almost unceasing warfare and the change of rulers caused further damage to the stability and prosperity of the once important city.

The heavy taxation imposed by the Seljuk tribal leaders began a steady outflow of its citizens to more safer and prosperous places. The trade routes and the passing caravans now chose alternative routes on their way to and from the Far East to the commercial centers of the West. The Shadadian rule was overthrown several times (in 1124, 1161 and 1174) by the resurgent Armenian headed by the remnants of Armenian nobility in the East. The most powerful of these, was the House of Zakar..

In 1199, Commander Zakare of the Zakarian house, liberated Ani from the Shadadian clan and made Ani the provincial center of the newly consolidated Zakarian possessions throughout parts of East Armenia. The Zakarian princes began to rebuild the great city of Ani. They reconstructed the old and built new churches, walls, caravan houses (hotels), palaces, baths and residential quarters.

The revival of Ani continued until the Mongol invasions that penetrated the Near East in 1236. The Mongol rule was short lived. New Turkic waves from Central Asia devastated Armenian cities and the countryside. Ani was not spared and sustained the same faith as other Armenian centers of civilization. The city would never again recover its former grandeur. By the XVIIIth century, Ani was virtually all but an abandoned city, a "ghost city" as the modern Turkish guides refer to the visiting tourists.

In 1878, the Russian army and Armenian volunteer fighters liberated the Kars province from the Turks. The liberated province included the Holiest of Holies, the Holy Symbol of Armenia, "the center of the world," -- the Twin -- Peaked Ararat-Masis. The province also included the ruins of Ani. In 1919 the province of Kars formed part of the restored Armenian State - the Republic of Armenia - the First Republic, only to be yet again invaded and annexed by the Turks a year later. Ani today is within the boundaries of Turkey, slowly rotting away in front of the eyes of the civilized world and UNESCO. In 2003, a genocide of different kind -- of cultural monuments took place, in the ancient, medieval Armenian cemetery of Julfa (Jugha) in Nakhichevan.

Imitating the uncivilized brutal behavior of the Taliban, the Azeri Turks, who like the former used the cloak of Islam (which always has been contrary to the "Turkish method" of destruction, Islam standing and representing first and foremost Culture) dynamited thousands of priceless khachkar-cross-stones, each bearing the superb marksmanship of ancient Armenian stone masons. The state-sponsored vandalism completely destroyed from the face of planet Earth yet another treasure of the ancient world. Again the world watched, or more precisely simply did not "see" (read: care), save for few principled individuals and organizations who sounded the alarm to the international community as the destruction was taking place in the opening years of the...Twenty First Century.

It is almost certain that the faith of the ruins of Ani, and indeed thousands of other ancient, priceless Armenian cultural monuments that are outside of the care and protection of the Armenian people would receive the same faith at the hands of the Turkish "governments." The Turkish chiefs are not giving up their chance of making a "quick buck" from the ruins, before the fine architectural marvels of civilization fade away. They organize and lead tours of Western tourists trough the "ghost city" and describe the great "Christian wonders". The guides are specifically instructed by the government military generals charged with running Western Armenia (along with destroying last vestiges of Kurdish life in the southeast), to never mention ARMENIA or ARMENIANS in the guide books and to the visitors. The Turks are trying very hard to cover up the past and to rewrite history.

The European Union has made it clear that Turkish government has to have numerous fundamental reforms that will bring the country from the current military junta environment into a modern democratic state.

The Anti-Armenian policy of Genocide denial, support of Azeri aggression against the Armenian people and further destruction of the historic monuments is leaving this country, contrary to the wishes of many of its citizens, in the grips of the dictatorship of the military junta that has no place in the EU, the family of civilized nations of the world.

Written by Gevork Nazaryan
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#18 Arpa

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 09:42 PM

QUOTE (garmag @ Feb 7 2008, 07:18 AM)
You are right.
I was naming only the "arakelagan" churches...
There is also protestant Armenian "joghovaran"...never mind Mormons, Jehova witnesses and some Jewish Armenian that I met, he had converted! oy veee.....etc. etc....

So it is “Joghovaran“, yekeghetsi?
Do you know that very word "yekeghetsi/ecclesia" means none other than "joghovaran"?
Do you know Armenian? Do you know that the Biblical book right between
Proverbs and Song of Solomon is
Ecclesiastes
And that it is translated as…
Between Առակած and Երգ Երգոց (I did not do the translation, it was done by the “Masthots Gang”)
Ժողովողի?
Do you know that the very word Ecclesia is none other than “joghovaran” from where the Latin Chiesa, the French Eglise and the Armenian Ekeghetsi/ԵԿԵՂԵՑԻ derive? Not unlike the Muslim word “jame‘” which means none other than a “gathering” place. In the Arabic “ov joghovurd” is known as “ayuha jema’a”.
Does the word “jami/izham/zham” “ring a bell”?

Edited by Arpa, 11 February 2008 - 10:07 PM.


#19 garmag

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 10:02 PM

QUOTE (Arpa @ Feb 11 2008, 09:42 PM)
“Joghovaran“?
Do you know Armenian?


I might not be as knowledgable about the Bible as you.....just attended Antelias for three years to become a priest but I got away in time.....

But if you ever were in Aleppo or Beirut, my recollection of, whilst I attended for six months Poghokagan schools, "Badvelis" always refered to their worship halls as JOGHOVARAN ! Who am I to argue, I stand corrected and thank you.

Shukran ya Akh ul Karim wa salaam u aaleik wa barakatahu.

#20 Arpa

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 10:13 PM

QUOTE (garmag @ Feb 12 2008, 05:02 AM)
I might not be as knowledgable about the Bible as you.....just attended Antelias for three years to become a priest but I got away in time.....

I can never be as knoledgeable of the Bible as you, as I have not attended the Seminary in Antelias. One can only wonder what they taught you during those three years, other than the Bible! What is their mission anyway, how to be a Dashnak, widen the gap/ SCHISM/division, and to refer to a protestant "church" as "joghovaran", not "yekeghetsi"??!!
I may know some of the "badvelis" in Aleppo who may have been more cognizant of the Armenian language, who knew that "ecclesia/ekeghetsi" was none other than the Greek word for "joghovaran/a gathering place".
And now. You tell us what the real Armenian word for "church" is. Is it "mehyan", "bagin", "tajar" or "atrushan""?
From the Ajarian; Եկէղեցի
QUOTE
180 ԵԿԵՂԵՑԻ 2-012 LW.-grk.
«1.ժողովուրդ» «2.հաւատացեալների հաւաքոյթ, ժողովուրդ, տաճար» ՟Բ. Մնաց. ժ. 3. (ասուած է հրեաների բազմութեան համար «Եկն Յերոբովամ եւ ամենայն եկեղեցին Եսրայելի առ արքայ Ռոբովամ»)«հաւատացեալների հաւաքոյթ, ժողովուրդ, տաճար» ՍԳր. Կոչ. Եզն. «մարդոց ժողով» Պղատ. սոկր. Պղատ. եւթիփռոն.
եկեղեցի. որից՝ եկեղեցական «հաւաքուիլ, խմբուիլ» եկեղեցացուցանել «ժողովուրդը մի տեղ հաւաքել» ՍԳր. «տաճարի վերածել» Եղիշ. յես. եկեղեցաշէն «եկեղեցին շինող բարերարը» Մ. մաշտ. 156ա. եկեղեցպան եկեղեցապան Յայսմ. նախեկեղեցի Բուզ. եւն: (origin:) յն

Edited by Arpa, 11 February 2008 - 10:56 PM.





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