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Glkho Monastery, Talish, NKR (Armenia)

Glkho Monastery ( or Horeka vank) is situated on a mountain slope in Martakert region of Nagorno Karabakh near Talish village. According to historian Movses Kaghankatvatsi the monastery refers to V century. Like hundreds of other monasteries Glkho Monastery has been devastated by foreign invaders several times and then reconstructed again. The monastic complex consists of a church, vestibule, a belfry, a large cemetery and several ruined auxiliary buildings.

According to the inscription on the tympanum, the church was rebuilt in 1279 by priests Stepanos and Hovhannes. The church is a single-nave vaulted hall. Square apse stage with an ancient burial vault is a part from the previous structure. Other traces of ancient architectural forms are not found. Ornamented friezes and capitals of previous ancient structures were used while building the church. The architectural style of the church is rather modest.

According to the inscription the vestibule was built in 1284 by Hovhannes. It`s a square hall with crossed vault-arches. The vestibule served as a burial vault for bishops and deacons of the monastery. The gravestones covered with ornaments and inscriptions, have true artistic and historical value. A small unpretentious belfry built in XVII c. joints the vestibule from its northern side.

Numerous khachkars are placed in the walls of the church and the vestibule. Besides, a large number of khachkars of XI and following centuries are scattered in the monastic yard. Images of riders, priests, various domestic scenes, as well as geometric and vegetable ornaments are pictured on them.

A large monastic cemetery is scattered with richly ornamented gravestones covered with relief pictures. Gravestones of the participants of national liberation movement are well preserved. Gravestone of Shamir-khan, staff-officer of Yermolov`s Russian army, Griboedov`s secretary and interpreter and participant of Gyulistan agreement signing ceremony (1813) is among them. There are also a few gravestones of Melik-Beglaryan’s Princely family.

Horeka Monastery was enclosed in the walls and ruins of numerous buildings, known as “Pateri tak” (under the walls), can be found near this walls.

By Natalia Ghukasyan,


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