Church of the Virgin Mary

Church of the Virgin Mary

The Church of the Virgin Mary was built by Nikolai Markof in the year 1324 (solar egira) and until 1349 was the main office and place of residence of the most important Armenian bishops. The church plan is influenced by the architecture of an Armenian church of the centuries 7-10 AD This building was built on a platform of the dimensions 8 / 19 × 45 / 32 meters in an area of ​​over 550 square meters using the basalt color ash. To enter the church there are stairs to the west of the platform and two "arms" north and south facing three entrances. Even the plant from outside and inside looks like a cross and according to the tradition of the Armenian churches, its pulpit is located in the part facing east. The church has a twelve-sided main dome with twelve skylights over the chapel and a dome of the bell tower with six columns in the west. The main dome was built under the influence of Byzantine architecture. The main entrance, located on the west side of the building, has a portal in the architectural style of the Armenian churches of the centuries 4-5 AD In the western side entrance, there are two small rooms and this part looks like a corridor giving access to the chapel and connects to the west side of the church. In the small room to the north there is an access with a staircase to reach the iwān and below the small room to the south there is a crypt.

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