Yeghvard Church, October 2009.
|Location||Yeghvard, Kotayk Province,
|Affiliation||Armenian Apostolic Church|
|Architectural type||Cruciform central-plan inside; rectangular almost square plan outside|
The church of Yeghvard (Armenian: Եղվարդ եկեղեցի; also Surp Astvatsatsin) completed in 1301 is located in the center of the town of Yeghvard in the Kotayk province of Armenia. Nearby to the northwest are the ruins of the Katoghike Church, a large triple-nave basilica built in the 5th to 6th centuries.
S. Astvatsatsin is a small cruciform central-plan interior with a rectangular but almost square plan exterior and a second floor. Centered above is a single cylindrical drum and a conical umbrella type dome. The drum is made up of twelve columns with arches that support the weight of the dome.
The second floor has a semi-cruciform layout with single small windows to the left and rear façades, while on the right is a larger window with a single column that stands in the middle. A small inset portal sits in the middle of the front façade, with the remnants of exterior stone steps that once led to the second floor.
The first floor has a single large portal at the front façade with a semi-circular lintel and decorative columns, while the left, right, and rear façades each have a small window. The left and right are surrounded by a large intricately carved cross in high-relief.
Exceptionally rich decorations cover a large portion of the church. There are beautiful motifs on each side at the second floor level and geometric patterns around the cornices, eaves, and other parts of the walls. Notable is the large cross carved in high relief on the front flanked by the Virgin Mary holding the baby Jesus and another saint. Below and just above the portal to the second floor are the motifs of a bull and lion. Above the larger window on the right façade is a motif of a large bird with a geometric rosette on its chest holding a hooved animal in its talons. On the left façade is a mountain goat, and on the rear is a large cat pouncing upon a goat.
Adjacent to the church are the remains of a chapel foundation. Khachkars and graves are nearby.
- Kiesling, Brady (2005), Rediscovering Armenia: Guide, Yerevan, Armenia: Matit Graphic Design Studio
- Armeniapedia.org: Yeghvard Church & Katoghike Church
- FindArmenia.com: Surp Astvatzatzin (Surp Nshan) Church of Yeghvard
- Yeghvard Church
- Virtual Tour to Yeghvard St.Astvatsatsin church
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