Throughout centuries, Armenian monasteries have played a great role in the spiritual, cultural and political life of the Armenian people. These holy sites are recognized not only as centers of prayer, but also as scriptoriums where numerous works and translations were scripted, hand-copied and passed on to generations to come. Many of the church complexes represent magnificent and inimitable samples of the Armenian ancient and medieval architecture.
The Cathedral (Mother Temple) of Ani was founded by order of the Armenian king Smbat II in 987. It was built by architect Trdat. With its monumental forms and rich decoration it symbolized the revival of the Armenian statehood.
Akner Monastery, one of the oldest monasteries of the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia, the largest center of miniature and science. It was located on the border of Tsakhut and Bardzrberd provinces.
The Church of the Holy Mother of God (Zoravor Surb Astvatsatsin) of the Hermitage of Ananias the Apostle is situated in the Shahar District of Old Yerevan, on the site of the tomb and chapel of Ananias the Apostle. In the first quarter of the 17th century, Abbot Movses (later Catholicos St. Movses III of Tathev) founded a hermitage on this site and built a monastic complex surrounded with ramparts.
The Monastery of Gandzasar is situated on Mountain Vank opposite the homonymous village, in the Martakert region of Artsakh Republic. It was founded before the 10th century. The monastery's Church of St. John the Baptist was built by Prince Hasan-Jalal Dola in 1216-1238.
The Great Hermitage of Tatev is located to the south-east of the village of Tatev, Syunik marz of Armenia, on the right bank of the River Vorotan, at the bottom of Mount Tatev. The current monastic complex was built in the second half of the 17th century and was replenished by some constructions in the 18th century.
This is a monastic complex located to the east of the village of Saghmosavan in Aragatsotn marz of Armenia, on the right bank of the River Kasakh, atop a precipitous gorge. According to tradition, the monastery was founded by Gregory the Enlightener.
The Monastery of Gosh or Nor Getik is located at the verge of Gosh village, in Tavush marz of Armenia, on the right bank of the River Getik. It was one of the largest medieval religious, educational, and cultural centers in Armenia.