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Artavazik Church, Byurakan, Armenia

Artavazik church is situated in a ravine not far from Byurakan village, Armenia. It's a domed cruciform structure built from red and black tuffa stone in VII century. The eastern wing is semicircular, the others are rectangular. A small side chapel is in the north-western part of the church. The western portal is framed with a pair of semi columns. In XIII century a belfry was erected on the roof of the western wing. There is a huge khachkar (cross-stone) monument (XIII century) near the church. In XIII century the church was reconstructed for the first time, in 1959-1960 for the second. The flood of 1840 caused considerable damage.

In the Armenian medieval architecture Artavazik church stands out for its unique identity. The church is not mentioned in the historical sources and unfortunately there are no lithographic inscriptions preserved. It's supposed that the church was named Artavazik after Artavazd, the builder of the church. Today the church is partially demolished: a great part of the vault and a dome are destroyed.

By Natalia Ghukasyan,


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