Where is Tatev Monastery?
The Tatev Monastery (Tatevi vank) is located in the center of the Syunik province in South of Armenia. Tatev is 30km from the town of Goris. It is located in the village Tatev, on the right high bank of the Vorotan River. Before climbing this breathtaking height, you should descend into the five-hundred-foot Vorotan Canyon. Also, you should stop at the “Devil’s Bridge”, by the warm baths of mineral springs. Here the two banks of the river meet. In addition of all this, when you drive to the Tatev Monastery, with each turn of the road you can see a new, uniquely beautiful landscape.
The Tatev Monastery received its name in honor of St. Eustathius, a disciple of the Apostle Thaddeus, who preached, like his teacher, Christianity. He died a martyr for a new faith in the Syunik province of historical Armenia. In the X century, they built the first church of the monastery. At this time a small number of monks lived in the monastery. In the XIII century, Tatev becomes the seat of the Syunik bishops.
History of the Tatev Monastery
In the year 906, the Prince of Syunik Ashot and his wife Princess Shushanthe built the largest church of the monastery complex. They called it Surb Pogos-Petros. The architecture of the cathedral is somewhat archaic. It reproduces the type of domed basilica of the XII century. Furthermore, it also has new features – chapels in the western part of the cathedral, where corners of walls are the main supports of the dome. Harmonic proportionality of individual parts of the building reinforces the impression of a significant height of the cathedral. Especially striking are the large external volumes of the dome of the church, a tall round drum topped with an umbrella overlap. The bas-reliefs decorating the windows, each of which represents a human face.
The north facade depicts the cathedral’s cottages: Prince Ashot and his wife Shushan, as well as Prince Grigor Supan and Dzagik. They painted the huge cathedral with frescoes, the remainings of which preserved and looked through in some places.
In the years 1390-1435, Tatev University operated at the Tatev Monastery. During that period Tatev Monastery was the largest center of philosophical and scientific thought of medieval Armenia. Also, Ovan Vorotnetsi and Grigor Tatevatsi headed University, as philosophers and teachers.
They were also prominent public figures who united around the university the best intellectual forces of the Armenian people.
It was the graduates of Tatev in 1441. Organized and transferred the throne of the Catholicos of All Armenian from Cilicia, on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, to the Ararat Valley – the heart of Eastern Armenia, to the Holy See of St. Echmiadzin.
Around the church, there are many buildings from the 17th-18th centuries. The residence of the abbot, the bell tower, the vaulted refectory with the kitchen, store rooms, housing and other office space.
Wings Of Tatev
- The shortest, most picturesque and impressive route to Tatev Monastery;
- The longest reversible cableway in the world (5752 m), recorded in the Guinness Book of Records.
- Twelve minutes of unforgettable flight above the ravine of the fierce Vorotan River;
- Celestial highway at the altitude of 320 m;
- Cutting-edge engineering solutions by Austrian-Swiss Doppelmayr/ Garaventa Group.