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Royal enthronement scene from the frontispiece of a gospel commissioned by Gagik-Abas, ruler of Kars, circa 1050. Their dress is influenced by the Turkic Seljuk style.[1][2]

Gagik-Abas, or Gagik-Abas II of Kars (ruled 1029–1065) was the Bagratid king of Kars, ruler of the Kingdom of Vanand. He was the son of Abas I (984–1029). He was a claimant to the throne of Bagratid Armenia after the collapse of the main Bagratid kingdom in 1045.[3][4]

Gagik-Abas was confronted to the conquests of the Seljuk Turks, who under Alp Arslan took the old Bagratid capital of Ani in 1064. Hoping to save Kars, he paid homage to the victorious Turks so that they would not lay siege to his city.[3]

In order to obtain protection from the Byzantine Empire, he was constrained to abdicate and cede his lands to the Byzantines and retreat to Anatolia, but Kars was then captured by the Seljuk Turks in 1065. In Baghk and Eastern Syunik, only a few Armenian fortresses remained.[5] He retired to Cappadoccia, where he died in 1069.[5]


  1. ^ Flood, Finbarr Barry. "A Turk in the Dukhang? Comparative Perspectives on Elite Dress in Medieval Ladakh and the Caucasus". Proceeding of the Third International Seechac Colloqium.
  2. ^ Maranci, Christina (2018). The art of Armenia: an introduction. New York, NY: Oxford University Press. p. 89. ISBN 9780190269005.
  3. ^ a b Arakelyan, Babken; Vardanyan, Vrezh; Khalpakhchyan, Hovhannes (1979). "s.v. Kars". Armenian Soviet Encyclopedia. Vol. 5. Yerevan. pp. 342–343.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  4. ^ Arakelyan, Babken; Vardanyan, Vrezh; Khalpakhchyan, Hovhannes (1979). "Կարս [Kars]". Armenian Soviet Encyclopedia Volume 5 (in Armenian). Yerevan: Armenian Encyclopedia. pp. 342–344.
  5. ^ a b Hovannisian, Richard G. (2004). The Armenian People From Ancient to Modern Times, Volume I: The Dynastic Periods: From Antiquity to the Fourteenth Century. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. p. 192. ISBN 1-4039-6421-1.