Crimea Was Known as “Large Armenia” in the 2nd Millennium BC

Crimea Was Known as “Large Armenia”The first accounts of Armenians in Crimea date back to the 8th century. Back then, Crimea has been under the rule of the Byzantine Empire, and Armenians have been moving there from numerous Byzantine cities.

During the 11th-12th centuries, offensives of nomadic Seljuk Turks in the Caucasus forced the inhabitants of the region to relocate to other areas of the Byzantine Empire, including Crimea.

By the 12th century, Armenians had been the second largest ethnic group in Crimea. Furthermore, Armenian colonies of Caffa (now Feodosia), Sudak, and Stary Krym have been so significant that official Latin documents began to refer to Crimea as Armenia Magna (Large Armenia) or Armenia Maritima (Sea Armenia).

In 1475, Crimea was conquered by the Ottoman Turks, followed by the oppression of foreigners. In the 1770s, over 22 thousand Armenians were resettled by Russian military leader Alexander Suvorov from Crimea to Azov Governorate. After the return of Crimea to Russia in 1783, Armenians started to move there again.

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