Gukas Vanandetsi, an Armenian scholar and publisher of the late 18th century

Gukas Vanandetsi is the author of numerous works on philosophy, religion, geography, and economics. Some of his works were published in Amsterdam on an Armenian printing press. Specifically, he published the work “Cosmography of Banali Amatarats” (1696), which serves as an instructional guide for the first Armenian printed map, the “Cosmographic Atlas.”

Gukas Vanandetsi also created astronomical and geodetic instruments with Armenian inscriptions, including astrolabes. One of these astrolabes is housed in the Byurakan Observatory. With the help of the astrolabe, coordinates of celestial bodies, the position of the Sun, the geographical latitude of a location, the time of day, and the duration of night and morning could be determined.

Gukas Vanandetsi is also known as Gukas Nuridzhanyan. He was born around the early 1650s in the village of Vanand (now in Nakhichevan); the date of his death is unknown. He was an Armenian historian, translator, philosopher, publisher, cultural figure, and writer.

He received his initial education in his native village and then continued his studies from 1679 to 1682 at the Urbana School in Rome. In 1690, he joined his compatriot, the printer Matteos Vanandetsi, in Amsterdam and actively participated in the work of the Armenian printing house.

by Ruben Shukhyan

Translated by Vigen Avetisyan

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