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Khor Virap

Khor Virap is a monastery of the Armenian Apostolic Church, located on the Ararat Plain in Armenia, near the closed border with Turkey, and about 8 kilometres (5 mi) south of the city of Artashat, within the territory of ancient Artaxata. Shown here with Mount Ararat in the background, it is one of the most visited pilgrimage sites in Armenia. Its fame is attributed to the fact that Gregory the Illuminator, the religious leader who converted Armenia from paganism to Christianity in 301, was imprisoned in the location for fourteen years by King Tiridates III. A chapel was initially built in 642 by Nerses III the Builder as a mark of veneration for Saint Gregory. Over the centuries, the monastery was repeatedly rebuilt; the current buildings date from 1662.

Photograph credit: Diego Delso

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