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Armenian Christmas


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#1 Aubépine

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 12:48 PM

I read somewhere that some Armenians celebrate Christmas on January 18. I always send my e-cards today (Merry Christmas to you all by the way smile.gif), so this came as a surprise. What's the reason for this, if it is true?

#2 Azat

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 01:32 PM

I have never heard of that

#3 Maral

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 01:55 PM

don't know the details...but I know that Armenians from Jerusalem celebrate on Jan 18th... the holidays just keeps going on and on and on wink.gif

Shenorhavor Sourp Dzenoont to you and yours biggrin.gif

#4 Yervant1

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 02:02 PM

QUOTE(Aubépine @ Jan 6 2007, 01:48 PM) View Post
I read somewhere that some Armenians celebrate Christmas on January 18. I always send my e-cards today (Merry Christmas to you all by the way smile.gif), so this came as a surprise. What's the reason for this, if it is true?

I'm not sure but I think I've heard about another date in January, which has something to do with Easter (Jesus's crucifixtion). Could be an old calendar date as well.
Thank you very much for your good wishes, Happy New Year to you and your family. smile.gif

#5 Aubépine

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 03:07 PM

QUOTE(Yervant1 @ Jan 6 2007, 10:02 PM) View Post
I'm not sure but I think I've heard about another date in January, which has something to do with Easter (Jesus's crucifixtion). Could be an old calendar date as well.
Thank you very much for your good wishes, Happy New Year to you and your family. smile.gif


Yes, that must be it. Has to do something with the calendar I guess. smile.gif

I hope you had a good time during New Year's eve and Christmas. smile.gif

#6 Harut

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 05:18 PM

հիսուս ծնվեց և հայտնվեցավ...

Edited by Harut, 06 January 2007 - 05:21 PM.


#7 Arpa

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Posted 06 January 2007 - 06:12 PM

QUOTE(Harut @ Jan 6 2007, 11:18 PM) View Post
հիսուս ծնվեց և հայտնվեցավ...

Քրիստոս Ծնավ եւ Յայնեցավ
Ձեզի մեզի մեծ Աւետիս
----
Anyone know this sharakan?
Այսօր տոննէ Սուրբ Ծննդեան
Աւետիս Աւետիս.
Տեառն մերո, եւ Յայտնութեան

It is not one, not two but three Chrsitmases.
The world should be as lucky as we.

See for yourselves. More info than you asked for and some I didn't know either.
---------

http://www.jpost.com...d=1164881943834


Christmas comes but thrice a year

DAVID SMITH , THE JERUSALEM POST Dec. 21, 2006

The dream of Christian children worldwide: Jerusalem celebrates three Christmases! That statement is, of course, a bit misleading. The traditional Christian communities - Roman Catholic, Greek Orthodox and Armenian - celebrate the birth of Jesus on December 25, January 6 and January 19 respectively, negating the possibility of Santa coming thrice to the same child.
These faith traditions each bring their own customs to the holiday, but share a common focus on the mystery and glory of the event, deemphasizing the commercial aspects so prevalent in the West.
Most Europeans and Americans are unfamiliar with the Armenian Church, which is ironic, because Armenia officially adopted the faith in 301 CE (about 25 years before Rome), and has maintained an emphasis on the Christ-mass, without the more secular gift-giving.
Bishop Aris Shirvanian, spokesman for the Armenian Patriarchate, explains why the Western churches were more influenced by pagan practices surrounding Christmas.
Christmas parties and gift-giving stem from "merrymaking inherited from the old pagan worship of the sun god - Saturn," he said. "Saturnalia was celebrated on December 25 in Rome, while Christians celebrated the birth of Jesus on January 6.
"The pope of the day, Sylvester, in order to abolish the pagan feast, moved the celebration of Jesus's birthday from January 6 to December 25, but the Armenian church had no reason to change the date because there was no pagan feast in Armenia on December 25."
Since the Armenians maintain the ancient date of Christmas as well as the old (Julian) calendar, 13 days are added to January 6, postponing Armenian Christmas until January 19 on the modern (Gregorian) calendar.
The Armenians focus on astvadz-a-haytnootyoon - revelation, since the January 6 holy day celebrated both Jesus's birth and baptism. (Many churches still celebrate Epiphany, the baptism of Jesus, on January 6.)
Since Jesus's birth and baptism are celebrated together, water is a vital aspect of the Armenian feast. Water, blessed by the Armenian clergy, receives the addition of oil believed to be similar to that which Jesus used to clean the feet of his apostles, and is distributed to the congregants.
The oil additive is said to come from St. Thaddeus, who first preached the gospel in Armenia, and is considered to have healing properties.
On January 18, Christmas Eve, Patriarch Torkam Manogian leaves the Armenian Quarter of the Old City with a large entourage and police escort. In centuries past the horsedrawn procession stopped at the Greek monastery of Mar Elias outside Bethlehem to water the horses and allow devotees to refresh themselves. Modern processions keep that tradition, as the Palestinian Authority assumes responsibility for the procession. Greek Archbishop Aristochos notes that the two governments work diligently to ensure Christmas access to Bethlehem. The Greek Orthodox Church enjoys a similar procession on Christmas Eve.
The procession continues to Bethlehem's Manger Square, where there is an official reception. The congregants enter the Church of the Nativity - shared by the Roman Catholics, Greek Orthodox and Armenians - and a mass is held. After a festive supper and rest, the midnight mass begins, concluding at about 3:30 Christmas morning.
The Greek Orthodox were reluctant to join the Western church in celebrating Christmas on December 25, but eventually did so for the sake of unity. (Both East and West agreed to celebrate Jesus's birth in December and his baptism on January 6.) Still, Jerusalem's Greek Orthodox Church clings to the Julian calendar, so when it adds the required 13 days to December 25, it celebrates Christmas on January 7 according to the modern calendar.
A highlight of the Greek Orthodox Christmas season is the Feast of St. Nicholas on December 6 and a pilgrimage to the Greek Orthodox Church of St. Nicholas in Beit Jala.
St. Nicholas was a church father born in the late third century who made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land in about 330 CE. Tradition holds that he slept in a cave in Beit Jala while visiting nearby Bethlehem. The church built over that cave commemorates his pilgrimage.
Archbishop Aristochos states that St. Nicholas's feast day "prepares us for Christmas." Since St. Nicholas was noted for his kindness and generosity to children, many believe this contributed to the Western tradition of giving gifts on Christmas. (Influenced by northern European immigrants to the US, St. Nicholas's memory eventually morphed into Santa Claus, akin to the Dutch Sinterklaas.)
The Greek Orthodox observe a 40-day fast before Christmas. The fast forbids meat, milk and eggs, but allows fish after the first week until the beginning of the last. This culminates with a great feast on Christmas Day including fried fish, asparagus with egg and lemon sauce, bean soup, and honey cake with nuts.
There are a number of beliefs related to the killantzaroi - "bad spirits" according to the archbishop - that are released during Christmas and wreak havoc until January 6, when Epiphany is celebrated.
These spirits are mischievous, toppling things and scaring people. Still, tradition holds that home remedies can be employed to restrain them. Among these is a sprig of basil wrapped around a wooden cross. Eventually the killantzaroi are expelled by the priest on Epiphany as he sprinkles holy water (associated with Jesus's baptism) around the house.
Like the members of its related liturgical churches, Roman Catholics proceed to Bethlehem on Christmas Eve, celebrated December 24. This is the celebration for which Bethlehem is most noted. Whether associated with the church or not, Manger Square fills with thousands. Multitudes of Muslims also come to witness the event.
But in smaller parishes quieter ceremonies occur on Christmas Eve. Franciscan Father Fergus Clarke is guardian of St. John in the Mountains Church, built at the traditional site of John the Baptist's birth, and on Christmas commemorates the Magnificat - the Virgin Mary's extended quote in Luke 1.
"Since we're a very small community," he says, "it's extraordinary that on Christmas Eve our church is full of mostly Jewish people. For example, last year I counted only eight Christians present. Since the church is very small, holding about 110 people seated, when I say it was 'full,' I mean standing room only.
"These Jewish people arrive as early as 11:15 for midnight mass. What is really so edifying is that the Jews, predominately young, stand in complete reverence and silence for almost an hour and half. If you compare it to other churches you wouldn't see such reverence and patience.
"Remember, the mass is celebrated in a foreign language for them, since we celebrate in Italian. The whole ritual is foreign to them, apart from the homily, which is given in English.
"But they come from as far away as Tel Aviv, and many call in advance to be sure they'll be here on time. They come because of some sense of mystery or awe of the divine that comes from the ritual, the music, their memories - transmitted from their parents, perhaps. For us it's a very uplifting ceremony because of their presence and attitude."
Fergus says the Israeli presence contributes to the "peace on earth, goodwill toward men" that Luke says the angels proclaimed at Jesus's birth.
"This year we are having an Israeli choir sing at midnight mass, and two years ago we had a Southern Baptist from Alabama sing a solo," he said.
Protestants maintain no official presence in Bethlehem, although many visit for interdenominational "shepherds' field" services convened by the YMCA in nearby Beit Sahur. Many attend local services in Jerusalem, such as those at the Lutheran Church of the Redeemer in the Old City, or at the Baptist Church near the city center.
Lindell Browning is a Nazarene minister living in Jerusalem. Browning's tradition includes traditional "shepherds' field" services.
"'Shepherds' field' is wherever the shepherds are in Bethlehem; it's not a specific field that we know of. There's no way to know."
Browning says he and friends read the birth narratives together from the Gospels of Matthew and Luke, often asking one of the young people to read the account of angels singing "Glory to God in the Highest." They sing carols, pray and share thoughts on the Christmas message.
Browning believes that in Jerusalem there is great stress placed on the angels' declaration to secure peace on earth. "In this area of the world it's something we pray for, something we want to see happen. Isaiah predicted the coming of a man who would be called the prince of peace, and that's our declaration: Christ is the prince of peace for the world."
Among Christians in Jerusalem there is less focus on the commercial aspects of the holiday. "I think there's much less emphasis on shopping and much more interest in people that are less fortunate than us. There were a couple of years when we gave each other smaller gifts and gave gifts to needy families. There were other years on which we made gifts for each other so we could better give to those in need.
"Here too [in Jerusalem] there's much more time because we don't have the Christmas activities that we would in the States. So we get together with friends and share."
For the majority of the Israeli population it is a normal work day.
Some Jerusalem Christians do put up Christmas trees, as the Israeli government provides trees free. A few shops decorate their windows for the holiday, but for the most part, commercialism is subdued and the season is pared back to its devotional origins.
The Armenians, proceeding into Bethlehem on their Christmas Eve, summarize the motive for the march as they sing joyously "Great and Wonderful Mystery." Greek Archbishop Aristochos says Christmas is in memory of the event "by which begins our salvation," while Father Fergus calls for goodwill toward men. The Brownings and friends quietly find a hillside and try to imagine what the shepherds experienced, expressing their devotion in good works.
St. Nicholas would recognize a Jerusalem Christmas.
The real Santa Claus
St. Nicholas was born in Patara, a Greek village (now Turkish) in the late third century. Although it's difficult to distinguish legend from fact, scholars agree on several points about his life.
Nicholas was from a wealthy fishing family and was generous to young people. A story, regarded as accurate in its essence though shrouded in legend, holds that on three different occasions he provided dowries for poor girls, thus saving them from slavery. (Tradition maintains that these dowries, tossed in through a window, were bags of gold that landed on stockings or shoes left near the fire to dry.)
Similar stories tell of Nicholas's generosity in saving people from starvation.
Due to a wealth of popular support, Nicholas was elected bishop of Myra on the coast of modern Turkey in the early fourth century.
About 330 CE he made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, and was there for several weeks, often sleeping in a cave in Beit Jala, near Bethlehem. The St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church now stands over that cave.
Nicholas died about 350 CE on December 6 - a feast day that was already being celebrated only a few years after his death. Due to the day's proximity to Christmas, as well as his generosity, Nicholas became caught up in the season's lore.
Throughout much of Europe alms were given to the poor on this saint's day, and children were the special recipients of gifts. Medieval French nuns would distribute candies on December 6.
Nicholas began the transformation into Santa Claus mostly by way of German and Dutch immigrants to North America. Germanic St. Niklaas became Sinterklass, and eventually Santa Claus.
Some less desirable aspects of northern European fable may have immigrated as well: His flying reindeer may stem from myths of the Norse god Wodin riding through the sky.
Reformers like Martin Luther tried to stop the metamorphosis, hoping to portray the baby Jesus (Christkindl in German) as the gift giver. Kris Kringle, derived from that German word, is now a synonym for Santa.
Nicholas's image in Dutch-influenced New York changed from pious churchman to elf-like gift bearer. This picture became formalized by a few poems, notably the Christmas favorite "A Visit from St. Nicholas" (now known as "The Night before Christmas") in 1823.
Currently burdened by commercialism, it's hard to envision Santa's prototype, the generous and devout Nicholas, making the dangerous trip to the Holy Land and sleeping in a cave in order to worship at the site of the first Christmas.
East is East and West is West
The early church can be roughly divided into East and West. The Eastern church, later Byzantium and the Eastern Orthodox liturgies, maintained different holidays, traditions and even doctrines than the Western church, which remained bound to Rome and the pope.
Among the points of disagreement was the proper dating of Jesus's birth - Christmas Day.
There is an ancient Jewish tradition that a prophet dies on the day of his conception, and the early church applied this formula to Jesus. Eastern and Western churches, through various and often questionable reasoning, determined respectively that Jesus died on April 6 and March 25. (The Roman Catholic Church still celebrates the latter date as the Annunciation of the Birth.)
Adding nine months of pregnancy to those dates results in a December 25 or January 6 Christmas.
Scholars also hold that the December 25 date was especially appealing to the Western church because it replaced the birthday of Sol Invictus (invincible sun). Romans thought that on that day the sun began its ascent and the days began to lengthen.
The pagan ceremony contained much revelry, drinking and immorality which the early church couldn't condone. Sun worship was outlawed under penalty of death, in the hope that worship of the Son would replace it.
Clearly that did occur, but not without echoes of the pagan traditions surviving. Imbibing and, to a lesser degree, gift-giving and holiday lights are related to the pre-Christian feast.
Still, the Eastern church maintained the January 6 date and combined it with Epiphany, the day of Jesus's baptism.
Eventually, under pressure from the Western church as well as its own clergy's inability to go to both the Jordan River and Bethlehem on the same day, a compromise was reached in the middle of the fifth century. Christmas would be celebrated December 25 and Epiphany on January 6 by both churches. This is simple enough, but when the Julian calendar was replaced by the Gregorian one, the Eastern church in Jerusalem continued using the old calendar. This results in a January 7 Christmas (December 25 plus 13 days).
Armenians refused the compromise, maintaining both the old January 6 date as well as the Julian calendar. Consequently Armenians celebrate Christmas on January 19 (January 6 plus 13 days).


#8 aSoldier

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Posted 07 January 2007 - 12:22 AM

Merry Armenian Christmas!

#9 Lord Mickail

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Posted 28 January 2007 - 09:42 PM

Armenian Christmas is on jan 6th not 18th, who celebrates it on the 18th?

#10 annannimusss

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Posted 29 January 2007 - 12:56 AM

I keep finding conflicting information about this.

Edited by SakoPasha, 29 January 2007 - 01:02 AM.


#11 Ariane

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Posted 21 February 2007 - 03:47 PM

Armenian Christmas is definitely the 6th of january, just like in Spain and other countrys, the Epiphany, when the 3 Wise Kings found Jesus

#12 Arpa

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Posted 21 February 2007 - 04:25 PM

QUOTE(Ariane @ Feb 21 2007, 09:47 PM) View Post

Armenian Christmas is definitely the 6th of january, just like in Spain and other countrys, the Epiphany, when the 3 Wise Kings found Jesus

6th of January? When 5.99999 billion people say it is Dec. 25th, now we'll have to believe you? Can you show us that calendar? Or better yet. Can you post your digital photo with those 3 kings?
Is this a hand of poker? I thought the French national passtime was belote where 3 kings are worth 100 points as opposed to 4 queens= 200. goof.gif goof.gif
What if I have a hand of 4 queens, do I win?!
BTW. Dear Araine, welcome. Don't take your royal, kingly armour off as you will encounter too many missiles. And, who is "epiphany"? Do we know her? Is she that blonde up a few doors up from me?
One more time.
Bievenue!!
We hope you stay.
However, don't be discouraged, but do realize that, like me, there are many cynics here who think the Three Kings/ Les Trois Rois is a card game. tongue.gif biggrin.gif wink.gif

Edited by Arpa, 21 February 2007 - 05:02 PM.


#13 Ariane

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Posted 21 February 2007 - 05:28 PM

QUOTE(Arpa @ Feb 21 2007, 11:25 PM) View Post

6th of January? When 5.99999 billion people say it is Dec. 25th, now we'll have to believe you? Can you show us that calendar? Or better yet. Can you post your digital photo with those 3 kings?
Is this a hand of poker? I thought the French national passtime was belote where 3 kings are worth 100 points as opposed to 4 queens= 200. goof.gif goof.gif
What if I have a hand of 4 queens, do I win?!
BTW. Dear Araine, welcome. Don't take your royal, kingly armour off as you will encounter too many missiles. And, who is "epiphany"? Do we know her? Is she that blonde up a few doors up from me?
One more time.
Bievenue!!
We hope you stay.
However, don't be discouraged, but do realize that, like me, there are many cynics here who think the Three Kings/ Les Trois Rois is a card game. tongue.gif biggrin.gif wink.gif

Nice to meet you Arpa,
no problem with cynics, when it's well done it's funny, I promise to stay on this site cause I love it, it's so precious to me to share with others armenians, just like with family . I've found this site since 3 days, I read all I can for to know better the members, and it's just FANTASTIC, I've seen you speak some french too, AFFERIM

#14 Yervant1

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Posted 21 February 2007 - 06:31 PM

QUOTE(Ariane @ Feb 21 2007, 06:28 PM) View Post

AFFERIM

Yeah!!!!! Arpa "Afferim" kezi. tongue.gif
Barev Ariane' smile.gif


#15 Ariane

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Posted 21 February 2007 - 06:47 PM

QUOTE(Yervant1 @ Feb 22 2007, 01:31 AM) View Post

Yeah!!!!! Arpa "Afferim" kezi. tongue.gif
Barev Ariane' smile.gif

Parev Yervant how are you? you say AFFERIM to Arpa cause you share his ideas, on the TROIS ROIS ?
have you heard about the Armenian Christmas on the 6th of january ? I've always heard that ! and it's the way it's got to be !!!

#16 neko

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Posted 21 February 2007 - 07:10 PM

QUOTE(Lord Mickail @ Jan 29 2007, 03:42 AM) View Post

Armenian Christmas is on jan 6th not 18th, who celebrates it on the 18th?

The feast of Theophany, the traditional date of Christ's birth, is on the 18th January according to the Julian calendar.

#17 Yervant1

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Posted 21 February 2007 - 07:15 PM

QUOTE(Ariane @ Feb 21 2007, 07:47 PM) View Post

Parev Yervant how are you? you say AFFERIM to Arpa cause you share his ideas, on the TROIS ROIS ?

I'm fine thank you very much. I'll let Arpa to answer your question. For me anything less than four kings not acceptable.
Just to let you know that some words that you are using are not Armenian, probably you assume that they are. Afferim is one of them. smile.gif


#18 Ariane

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Posted 22 February 2007 - 03:19 AM

QUOTE(Yervant1 @ Feb 22 2007, 02:15 AM) View Post

I'm fine thank you very much. I'll let Arpa to answer your question. For me anything less than four kings not acceptable.
Just to let you know that some words that you are using are not Armenian, probably you assume that they are. Afferim is one of them. smile.gif

Are you angry with me for that ? Sorry, but my family was "western armenian", as a lot of armenian living there they were speaking both langage cause as you know we ( the armenians in general !!!) are so clever, and have a great ability to learn other culture.
Sorry if I hurt u but it's my armenian, it's wot I've heard all my life, when I was doing something well, my granfather, Boghos, was telling me "AFFERIM ARTCHIGS" .
PS: 4 Kings better than 4 Queens as said Arpa, because with 4 Queens he may be in trouble.....lol

#19 Ariane

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Posted 22 February 2007 - 04:39 AM

I've done a mistake, not just " AFFERIM ARTCHIGS " it was " AFFERIM KHELLATSI ARTCHIGS " sorry. LOL LOL LOL

#20 Arpa

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Posted 22 February 2007 - 08:56 AM

QUOTE(Ariane @ Feb 22 2007, 10:39 AM) View Post

I've done a mistake, not just " AFFERIM ARTCHIGS " it was " AFFERIM KHELLATSI ARTCHIGS " sorry. LOL LOL LOL

You mean apris aghcik@s.
Oui. Je parle un peu de Francais.
MERCI BEAUCOUP!
Some Americans would joke as - “mercy bucket” .
Even if I may have lost the art of writing and speaking in the language of Moliere et al, I can still read and understand.
It is ironic that you say you are of the so called western heritage. The irony is that we westerners use much less Turkish words than the easterners, simply because many of us, or our ancestors knew the Turkish language and could tell which words to not use. A short time ago an obviously eastern Armenian used the word “chojukner” , obviously not knowing that that is not an Armenian word. Shall we red Touman’s “ “Aprek erekehq, bayts mez pes chapreq- Aferim chojukhlar…“ Us, the so called western Armenians consciously and deliberately avoid using words that we deem not Armenian, I.e Turkish. However, at times we carry that to the extreme, we use overcompensation, or “hyper-correction” Hi Nairi! Where are you? And carry it to the extreme, as to when we suspect that a common word is used by both people we automatically dismiss it as “foreign” and avoid using it. A sermonette? We the so called western Armenians should forget our Ottoman Turkish heritage and start learning REAL ARMENIAN. Case in point may such words as “erang/ireng”, “orinak/ormek”, “gmpet/kumpet” etc. Of course if Ali Suat (Where is he? I miss him) were here he would try and prove otherwise. Yes. Maybe the root source of those words is a tird party from where we both borrowed. Yet, when a word is common to the Armenian, Persian and Turkish it does not necessarily rule out native Armenian as the root/source. That would be tantamount of “throwing the baby out with the bathwater”.
A good example of “throwing the baby out” would be the following thread below.
Before we go there. Even if this thread has nothing to do with linguistics, let us refresh our memory.
Ariane, do you see the Unicode Armenian text?
When we say “khorovats” we transliterate from ԽՈՐՈՎԱԾ/ԽՕՐՈՈՒԱԾ. We know that before we incorporated the Latin O we used the equivalent of AU/ ԱՒ to impart the sound., therefore we used to write խորոված խաւրուած. Now tell me where that so called NOT turdish “khavurma/khaUrma/khorma/khorvats” comes from! OK! Allright! Maybe it comes from the Sanskrit “XAUR”. Pray tell us who were first exposed to Sanskrit and whose language belongs in that same IE family of languages! Turkish? Is there such a “language, between Arabic, Persian, Latin and…. Yes Armenian?
Here is Kauur/ Խաւր/Khaurvats/Խաւրուած/Խօրոված;
http://hyeforum.com/...showtopic=10444
Those qatsordi-s**. They need their behinds “khorovats”!!!
**In their language- kanjukh oghlu= sonofaBITCH..

Edited by Arpa, 22 February 2007 - 08:58 AM.





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