Tmkaberd – One Of The Wonders Of Javakhk

Tmuk, Tmbuk, Tmogvi, or Tmkaberd was a medieval fortress on the left bank of the Kura River in the district of Upper Javakhk, Gugark Province, Greater Armenia. Currently, it is located in the Aspindza (Aspnyak) region of Georgia.

The fortress occupies three hills and used to be surrounded by 150 meters long and 3 meters wide walls. Each hill had several towers built of carved stone.

Tmkaberd had three doors – one each from the south, north, and east. An underground road from the south door went down to the Kur River. The walls of a chapel with the images of the Mother of God, two virgins, and two apostles are preserved in the fortress as well.

In front of one of the hills is a 4.5 meters high monument surrounded by house ruins. Here stands the village of Tmbuk (Tmogvi) whose cemetery contains many tombstones and khachkars (cross-stones) with Armenian inscriptions.

Since the end of the 12th century, Javakhk (along with other provinces of Northern Armenia) with its cities Tmkaberd and Akhalkalaki has belonged to the Armenian Zakaryan dynasty as a hereditary estate.

Hovhannes Tumanyan’s poem “The Capture of Fort Tmuk” (1902) tells about the Tmkaberd Fortress.

Khoren Kasyan, taken from Harutyun Harutyunyan

Read Also: Demolition of Armenian Monuments in Armenian Highlands, Hidden Khachkars Near the Tmbkaberd Fortress, Georgia

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