Haghpat, Lori Region,Republic of Armenia
Haghpat is a medieval monastery complex located in the village of Haghpat in Lori Region. It was built in the 10th century and during the 10th-13th centuries, Haghpat was an eminent spiritual and cultural centre of Armenia. The monastery was famous for its rich library and a school where pupils were taught philosophy, rhetoric, music and manuscript illumination.
The Monastery of Haghpat is one of the largest and the most impressive monasteries in Armenia. The main characteristics of the Medieval Armenian architecture are reflected in the buildings of this magnificent monastery. The monastery includes the churches of Saint Nshan, Saint Grigor and Saint Astvatsatsin, a churchyard, a repository, a bell tower, a refectory, many Khachkars (cross-stones) and other constructions. The complex was surrounded by high walls to protect from the attacks.
The oldest church of Haghpat, Saint Nshan was built by Ashot 3rd Voghormats and his wife Khosrovanuysh in 976-991. St. Nshan is a cruciform type church, encased in a rectangular building and crowned by a large dome. The prayer hall is covered with beautiful frescoes.
The Church of Saint Grigor was built in 1025. It is also a cruciform type church inside of a rectangular building with rooms in four corners. The rooms are three-storey, which is not typical of Armenian churches.
Just to the north of the gavit is the church of St. Astvatsatsin (1208-1220). It is a cruciform type church inside of a rectangular building. The cylindrical drum is covered with a triangular roof.
In 1996 the Haghpat Monastery was added to UNESCO's World Heritage List.