Pghindzavank, Armenian Monastery-Fortress

Pthgavank, Armenian Monastery-FortressPghindzavank is a monastery-fortress on a small plateau in the village of Pthgni in the Lori Province of Armenia, near the Debed river’s canyon. Pghindzavank has been a strategically significant site during Bagratuni and Kiurikian dynasties’ rule in Armenia.

In the early 13th century atabeg Ivane Mkhargrzeli of Zakarids-Mkhargrzeli dynasty, who was an influential official under Tamar the Great, the Queen of Georgia from 1184 to 1213, abandoned ideas of Armenian Apostolic Church to follow Orthodoxy and passed it to Chalcedonian Armenians.

The Pghindzavank monastery is one of the outstanding examples of early Medieval architectonics of Armenian artisans. It has been built in either 6th or 7th century.

Nowadays the church is dilapidated with only fragments of the north wall, the east portion of the south wall and the east supporting arch of the dome remaining. Arcuated front door with three windows on each side is situated in the center of the north facade.

The interior of the church consists of reliefs depicting people (including Mary, Christ, the apostles) and animals. One of the images with secular content portrays a horseman striking a wounded animal with an arrow.

According to the relief, the name of the rider is Manuel Amatuni. Another picture to the left represents a man with a spear fighting a lion, who is identified with Manuel Amatuni’s son Sahak Amatuni.

A nice place to visit in Republic of Armenia, Akhtala / HD /

Akhtala Fortress

Akhtala – Historical Georgian monastery complex – video by Acho Tsagareli

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