Vankasar Church

Coordinates: 40°04′20″N 46°53′15″E / 40.0721°N 46.8874°E / 40.0721; 46.8874
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Vankasar Church
Վանքասար Վանք
Beşikdağ kilsəsi
Church of Vankasar
AffiliationArmenian Apostolic Church
LocationAgdam District, Azerbaijan
Vankasar Church is located in Azerbaijan
Vankasar Church
Shown within Azerbaijan
Geographic coordinates40°04′20″N 46°53′15″E / 40.0721°N 46.8874°E / 40.0721; 46.8874
Completed7th century

Vankasar Church (Armenian: Վանքասարի եկեղեցի, Azerbaijani: Beşikdağ kilsəsi) is a 7th-century Armenian church located in the Agdam District, Azerbaijan.[1][2]


Vankasar Church was built sometime in the 7th century, but the first known records of its existence are from 1858, when it was described as "ruins of a monastery" by Archbishop Sargis Jalalyants. In the 1980s, it underwent restoration by the Azerbaijani government, during which Armenian inscriptions and carvings were destroyed, and khachkars moved or damaged. During the First Nagorno-Karabakh War, the church was damaged by a projectile, but it was later repaired by the Artsakh Department of Tourism.[3] In 2021, after the Second Nagorno-Karabakh War and the Azerbaijani recapture of the area, concerns were raised by Caucasus Heritage Watch about satellite images taken of the church. The images, showing multiple vehicles parked near the site, were viewed as possible indicators of Azerbaijani interference with the church, but no evidence of such interference has been reported.[4]


Vankasar Church is an early Medieval cruciform-style church with a central conical dome. It is built of cream colored stone, and it sits on a peak that allows it to be visible from several miles away.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Karabakh's "white" sight: Vankasar Church (PHOTOS)". Retrieved 2017-08-31.
  2. ^ Planet, Lonely. "Vankasar Church in Northeast Karabakh". Lonely Planet. Retrieved 2017-08-31.
  3. ^ "The Church of Vankasar". Monument Watch. Retrieved 2023-10-02.
  4. ^ Chapple, Amos (2021-04-22). "Activity At Recaptured Church In Azerbaijan Raises Concern". Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. Retrieved 2023-10-02.
  5. ^ Hairenik (2013-07-25). "Tigranakert, Artsakh: Story and Photos by Matthew Karanian". The Armenian Weekly. Retrieved 2017-08-31.