Saint Karapet Monastery

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Religious

Description

Surb Karapet Monastery (Armenian: Մշո Սուրբ Կարապետ վանք, Msho Surb Karapet vank, also known by other names) was an Armenian Apostolic monastery in the historic province of Taron, about 30 km (19 mi) northwest of Mush (Muş), in present-day eastern Turkey.
Surb Karapet translates to "Holy Precursor" and refers to John the Baptist, whose remains are believed to have been stored at the site by Gregory the Illuminator in the early fourth century. The monastery subsequently served as a stronghold of the Mamikonians—the princely house of Taron, who claimed to be the holy warriors of John the Baptist, their patron saint. It was expanded and renovated many times in later centuries. By the 20th century it was a large fort-like enclosure with four chapels.
Historically, the monastery was the religious center of Taron and was a prominent pilgrimage site. It was considered the most important monastery in Turkish (Western) Armenia and the second most important of all Armenian monasteries after Etchmiadzin. From the 12th century the monastery was the seat of the diocese of Taron, which had an Armenian population of 90,000 in the early 20th century. It attracted pilgrims and hosted large celebrations on several occasions annually. The monastery was burned and robbed during the Armenian Genocide of 1915 and later abandoned. Its stones have since been used by the local Kurds for building purposes.

Reference

Wikipedia, Blueballoon

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