Joined: April 3rd, 2012, 11:17 pm

April 14th, 2012, 3:40 pm #11

Hi Andrew - I got my hands on the Taron-Turuberan book you mentioned. There are 14 pages on this monastery. I've added the description of the location onto Armeniapedia, but I don't know that it sheds much more light on this. Maybe in google earth (using the terrain feature) it would be possible with all these random bits of information to find the spot.

http://www.armeniapedia.org/index.php?t ... _Monastery

There is more info about the monastery in both texts, but it's a fair bit of text. Can you by chance read Armenian?

Raffi
Raffi,

Many thanks for this additional information on Yeghrdut, and I see that others have added to the thread (I'll address this separately).

What the sources say fits very well the position of Dera Sor (Kurdish "Red Church"), which is 2.5 km SE of Kizilagac. The Red Church is also 22 km from Mush by land transport, which makes sense of Yeghrdut being cited as 20-22 km from Mush.

The coordinates you give (38.752988° 41.346242) are close to the site of the Red Church, which lies 580 m to the southwest and easily visible.

Were these coordinates given in either the sources you quote?

I see no obvious rectilinear features at the coordinates, although I suspect they are meant to be hitting nearby Dera Sor.

Thank you also for adding the material to Armeniapedia, which will be useful for future research into the subject.

What I will ask you is whether you can give me the full citation of the two sources you quote. Clearly, I have the 1953 reference (although not the text), although confirmation of its page range would be useful. But most particularly the Dictionary of Armenian Place-names. Can you tell me the author, publisher, date, page range of the reference.

If there is any way you could photocopy this material and get it to me, or scan it, I would very much indebted. Maybe you could direct me to your email address, or facebook profile, and we can discuss the possibility there.

I do not read Armenian myself, but have a translator available where necessary.

Once again, I appreciate your help, and ask you to continue to look into this subject for further elucidation of Yeghrdut's history, extent and traditions.

Regards and many thanks,

Andrew
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Joined: April 3rd, 2012, 11:17 pm

April 14th, 2012, 3:48 pm #12

Having taken my own advice to check Google Earth, this is what looked somewhat promising to me.

38.752988° 41.346242° - forested canyon where three sides are hills, and one side is open to the Mush plain, and seems like it should have a view of Mt. Sipan as well. There appear to be ruins in this spot, as well as both up and down the road from here. It seems heavily visited from the look of the road. Driving from Mush would be about 20km.
Hi,

Yes, we have checked the elevation and views from Dera Sor (the Red Church) using Google Earth and find they perfectly fit the description of what might be seen on a clear day from Yeghrdut monastery according the Armenian Place-name Dictionary as cited by Raffi. This includes Mt Ararat, Sipan Dag, Nemrut Dag, Bingol Dag and Karapet monastery. Grgur is presumably Gurgur, an old Armenian village that would seem to have existed somewhere in the vicinity of modern-day Kizilagac. It took its name from the gurgling or rushing sounds of the waters of the Murad/Aratsani/Eastern Euphrates as they crash down into a gorge north of this position.

It looks likely that Dera Sor is Yeghrdut, although actual confirmation of this fact has yet to be found.

Thank you for your help.

Regards,

Andrew
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Joined: April 3rd, 2012, 11:17 pm

April 14th, 2012, 3:56 pm #13

This information was sent to me. 38°45'2.75"N 41°20'26.12"E

Having walked along the top of the hills between Mush and to within about 10km of this location, I can confirm that what the translated text on Armeniapedia says about the dramatic scenery is right. There are many deep valleys, surrounded by pine forests, the area has an almost alpine feel to it, and the air is much clearer and sharper than down in the plain. Maybe "the gray top of Masis" was actually Suphan Dagi.
Hi,

Many thanks for the coordinates, which take you to the site of Dera Sor, the Red Church, 2.5 km SE o Kizilagac.

Can I ask you the source of the information, i.e. whether it came from a literary source or contact.

Any further information would be appreciated.

According to Google Earth, from the top of the hill on which Dera Sor stands you should just - and only just - be able to see the snowy peaks of Masis, i.e. Mt Ararat, as well as Sipan which is easily identified from this position.

Again thanks for the help in this matter.

Regards,

Andrew
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Joined: April 3rd, 2012, 11:17 pm

April 14th, 2012, 4:05 pm #14

My guess was (only) a few hundred meters off, which really is a testament to the descriptions... but I didn't notice the rather obvious ruins. Thanks for the coordinates, I'll add it to the page. -Raffi
Hi, Raffi and all,

It does seem likely that Dera Sor is probably Yeghrdut, although any possible way this can be verified would be appreciated, i.e. a match of the existing ruins/foundations against plans/pictures of Yeghrdut, if indeed they exist today.

Another question: I understand that books from Yeghrdut monastery are today housed in the Institute of Ancient Armenian Manuscripts http://www.matenadaran.am/v2_2/>

I have tried searching the site for any reference to the library, in the hope of identifying the manuscripts in question, but have so far failed.

Has anyone any way of checking Matenadaran to find out what texts they do hold from Yeghrdut.

Again, appreciate all help in this respect.

Regards,

Andrew
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Joined: April 3rd, 2012, 11:17 pm

April 14th, 2012, 4:15 pm #15

Hi Andrew - I've added more info about the monastery on the Armeniapedia page. Very interesting history and legends.

VirtualAni - I'd love any feedback you might have on the exact locations of some of the other monasteries here:http://www.armeniapedia.org/index.php?t ... _in_Turkey (I usually specify when the location is not exact)

If I could get your email address, it would be great to be able to exchange notes now and then.

raffi ((-a-t-)) cilicia.com
Raffi,

Hi, I shall make contact through your email address at cilicia.com

I'll check again on Armeniapedia. I saw the material from the 1953 source, and also the entry from the Armenian Place-names Dictionary, but I do realise there is a very rich layer of folk stories associated with Yeghrdut, which I would certainly like to explore further.

Having said this, there are so many monasteries on the plain of Mush which have simply gone under the radar when it comes to histories of Taron, that it is difficult to focus on one at the exclusion of so many others.

Only Surb Karapet, and to a lesser degree, Arakelots, seems to get the publicity, a policy I suspect that was initiated a great many centuries ago by the monks and clerics of the former.

Once again, thanks for your help on this matter.

Regards,

Andrew
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Researcher
Researcher

April 15th, 2012, 2:36 pm #16

Raffi,

Many thanks for this additional information on Yeghrdut, and I see that others have added to the thread (I'll address this separately).

What the sources say fits very well the position of Dera Sor (Kurdish "Red Church"), which is 2.5 km SE of Kizilagac. The Red Church is also 22 km from Mush by land transport, which makes sense of Yeghrdut being cited as 20-22 km from Mush.

The coordinates you give (38.752988° 41.346242) are close to the site of the Red Church, which lies 580 m to the southwest and easily visible.

Were these coordinates given in either the sources you quote?

I see no obvious rectilinear features at the coordinates, although I suspect they are meant to be hitting nearby Dera Sor.

Thank you also for adding the material to Armeniapedia, which will be useful for future research into the subject.

What I will ask you is whether you can give me the full citation of the two sources you quote. Clearly, I have the 1953 reference (although not the text), although confirmation of its page range would be useful. But most particularly the Dictionary of Armenian Place-names. Can you tell me the author, publisher, date, page range of the reference.

If there is any way you could photocopy this material and get it to me, or scan it, I would very much indebted. Maybe you could direct me to your email address, or facebook profile, and we can discuss the possibility there.

I do not read Armenian myself, but have a translator available where necessary.

Once again, I appreciate your help, and ask you to continue to look into this subject for further elucidation of Yeghrdut's history, extent and traditions.

Regards and many thanks,

Andrew
Hi Andrew,

Okay, the book on the monasteries of this region was actually authored by Dr. H. Hamazasb Vosgian. At least that's how I would transliterate it knowing he's Armenian. It was published in Vienna. The entry on Yeghrdut starts on page 91.

The "Dictionary of Toponymy of Armenia and Adjacent Territories" is published in Yerevan. The Yeghrdut entry is in Volume II, which came out in 1988, and is on page 193-194. Authors are T. Kh. Hakobyan, St. T. Melik-Bakhsharyan, and H. Kh. Barseghyan. Published by Yerevan University Press.

The dictionary tends to be extremely detailed in listing every possible name a place has ever had. For this monastery, it does not list Dera Sol, or Karmir Vank, or anything else that seems to refer to the name "Red Church". The basic name variants are: Yeghrtud, S. Hovhannes of Yeghrtud, Yeghekni S. Hovhannes, Yegherdur, Yeghrtuto, S Hovhannes, S Hovhannes Mkrdich, Shishivgho, Shishyoghu, Shishyugho... it lists more, which are very minor variations on these.

The coordinates I gave were a guess just by reading the directions and then looking on Google Earth for a spot that might match the description. It turned out to be quite close, but not quite on the dot.

Hope that helps,
Raffi
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Researcher
Researcher

April 15th, 2012, 2:38 pm #17

Hi,

Yes, we have checked the elevation and views from Dera Sor (the Red Church) using Google Earth and find they perfectly fit the description of what might be seen on a clear day from Yeghrdut monastery according the Armenian Place-name Dictionary as cited by Raffi. This includes Mt Ararat, Sipan Dag, Nemrut Dag, Bingol Dag and Karapet monastery. Grgur is presumably Gurgur, an old Armenian village that would seem to have existed somewhere in the vicinity of modern-day Kizilagac. It took its name from the gurgling or rushing sounds of the waters of the Murad/Aratsani/Eastern Euphrates as they crash down into a gorge north of this position.

It looks likely that Dera Sor is Yeghrdut, although actual confirmation of this fact has yet to be found.

Thank you for your help.

Regards,

Andrew
I wouldn't rule out that the Kurdish name could be relatively new, and not in any of the published literature... -Raffi
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Joined: April 3rd, 2012, 11:17 pm

April 15th, 2012, 8:15 pm #18

Hi Andrew,

Okay, the book on the monasteries of this region was actually authored by Dr. H. Hamazasb Vosgian. At least that's how I would transliterate it knowing he's Armenian. It was published in Vienna. The entry on Yeghrdut starts on page 91.

The "Dictionary of Toponymy of Armenia and Adjacent Territories" is published in Yerevan. The Yeghrdut entry is in Volume II, which came out in 1988, and is on page 193-194. Authors are T. Kh. Hakobyan, St. T. Melik-Bakhsharyan, and H. Kh. Barseghyan. Published by Yerevan University Press.

The dictionary tends to be extremely detailed in listing every possible name a place has ever had. For this monastery, it does not list Dera Sol, or Karmir Vank, or anything else that seems to refer to the name "Red Church". The basic name variants are: Yeghrtud, S. Hovhannes of Yeghrtud, Yeghekni S. Hovhannes, Yegherdur, Yeghrtuto, S Hovhannes, S Hovhannes Mkrdich, Shishivgho, Shishyoghu, Shishyugho... it lists more, which are very minor variations on these.

The coordinates I gave were a guess just by reading the directions and then looking on Google Earth for a spot that might match the description. It turned out to be quite close, but not quite on the dot.

Hope that helps,
Raffi
Raffi,

Hi, many thanks for the references. Much appreciated.

Dera Sor ("Red Church") is a local Kurdish name for the architectural ruins how being linked with the missing monastery of Yeghrdut. It was a proper toponym associated with the site in the past.

I will continue to look for further confirmation that the two places are one and the same. I say this as I was told by locals in the area that Yeghrdut was located somewhere in the vicinity of Zengok, marked on the map as Yorecik. It apparently overlooked the Aratsani river and was located on its southern shore. Below it was a suspension bridge spanning the width of the river, beyond which, on a hill, was a fortress, presumably that at Ulayu.

Looking at Zengok/Yorecik you can see a large number of ruins around Zengok, some of substantial size. However, I have no further knowledge on what these might represent, whether they be the remains of an Armenian monastery or the destroyed village of Zengok.

If not Yeghrdut, then was another monastery located here also.

I understand there were something like 30 monasteries in all on the plain of Mush, of which very little is known about any of them other than those of Surb Karapet and Surb Arakelots.

Andrew
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Joined: April 3rd, 2012, 11:17 pm

April 15th, 2012, 8:16 pm #19

I wouldn't rule out that the Kurdish name could be relatively new, and not in any of the published literature... -Raffi
That is exactly right.

Andrew
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VirtualAni
VirtualAni

October 29th, 2015, 11:27 pm #20

Hi, I am trying to locate the exact position of a monastery called Yeghrdut or Erghduti that once existed on the southern edge of the plain of Mush, just south of the Eastern Euphrates.

Here is the Wikipedia entry.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yeghrdut_monastery>

The coordinates given in the Wiki entry take you to a hillside without any trace of a building structure or boundary wall.

Take a look: 38.7834°N 41.2590°E

I want to pin down the site better, so have ordered:

Hamazasp Oskean (or Oskian or Voskian), Taron-Turuberani vankere (The
Monasteries of Taron-Turuberan) Vienna: Mekhitarist Press, 1953

This apparently contains more information on the site.

The following Thierry reference also has more information:

Thierry J. M., Eastern Turkey, archeological journey of life, travel diaries "Monument", Yearbook 1, E., 1987.

However, I cannot find this title among his bibliography at:

http://www.acam-france.org/bibliographi ... jeanmichel

Any one out there able to lay their hands on either the Thierry reference or any better information on the monastery?

The Wiki coordinates fall to the west of the modern village of Gudumlu, although this was almost entirely destroyed in 1993, and residents there today are unaware of any nearby monastery ruins. I have tried also at another local village Kizilagac, a little to the east, asking the same question, with the same response. No monastery known nearby, other than the ruins of a so-called "Red Church" (dera sor) somewhere to the east of Kizilagac.

Kizilagac apparently derives its names from Kizilxac, meaning Red Cross, although why no one seems to know. Yet it does appear to suggest the presence of an Armenian church foundation.

An "Armenian" mill and dam exists on the Kizilagac stream a km or so south of the village, and this too is likely to have been connected to a monastery nearby.

Any help appreciated.

Andrew
I went to Yeghrdut monastery this summer. The Google Earth coo-ordinates are correct.

Public transport along the road from Mush to Kizilagac is easy to find thanks to the new university campus along its route. Get a Mush city dolmush that goes past the stadium and get off at the road junction to Kizilagac. Minibuses going to Kizilagac pick up passengers there. Get off at the turnoff to Suluca. Suluca also has a Kurdish name which I did not note down. The walk up from Suluca is along a steep and winding but fairly easy dirt road (undrivable for a normal car) that runs through scrub forest. It takes about two hours walking.

There is very little left of the monastery – almost nothing of its churches, and only the ruins of the base of a belltower of which just two of its brick arches survive.

Most of the western side of the monastery's enclosure wall survives – this is a large and very impressive structure that dates from at least two building periods. Its northern section is a thick and very tall wall, built of red brick for 2/3rds of its height, the remaining 1/3rd being of rubble masonry. It has curved corners at its northern and southern end. Only short fragments of the wall extend out from those corners to the east, suggesting that the wall was never finished. The line of those unfinished north and south walls also does not fit the position of the churches and the belltower. There are the foundations of a series of chambers built against its inside face but they seem to be from a later period and are built of rubble.

The brick wall may be an unfinished fortified enclosure wall constructed before the Turkish invasions, and probably from the period of Byzantine rule in the Mush valley. The rest of the monastery probably postdates this period.

From the south corner of the brick wall the enclosure continues further south along the same line but now as a slightly lower wall built of rubble masonry with bands of brickwork. The south, east, and north sides of the enclosure wall were probably similarly constructed but they have almost entirely vanished. Their lines can be made out along with the foundations of several protruding semicircular towers.

There is a spring close to the southeast corner of the monastery enclosure – but the original location of it was probably further to the southeast where a half-buried arched structure survives.

There was a small tented encampment of Kurds next to the ruins, tending herds of sheep, cattle, and goats. They were all part of a single extended family and they spend the summer months there. The people seemed friendly, their dogs are not.

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