Momik: Gladzor University Historic-Cultural Preserve-Museum

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Gladzor University Historic-Cultural Preserve-Museum

 Gladzor University Historic-Cultural Preserve-Museum

This museum, established in 1984 on the 700th anniversary of Gladzor University, is located in the historic church of Surb Hakob (St. Jacob) in Vernashen village. The exhibition is devoted to higher education, scriptural art, the unprecedented rise of various branches of science in Medieval Armenia, and the history of Gladzor University, believed by some to have been located at Tanahat (Tanadeh) Monastery, 4.8 km from here.

At Gladzor, students had a rigorous syllabus, studying Theology, Mythology, Philosophy, Bibliography, Grammar, Rhetoric, Logic, Arithmetic, Astronomy, Chronology and Geometry. Its senior faculty included the noted Armenian theologians David Sasnetsi, Grigor, Martiros, Hovhannes, Kirakos and Kiuregh. Also of note, the outstanding miniature painters Toros Taronatsi, Avag and Momik studied and worked at the university.

Gladzor was a major center of calligraphy where hundreds of manuscripts were created.

An important distinction from other schools of learning in medieval Armenia, Gladzor University had its own charter and its own educational and scientific grading system. Of special note, students practiced oral debate and defended graduation thesis at the university.

The University's founder and its first Provost was a distinguished teacher Nerses Mshetsi Vardapet (theology, calligraphy), who in 1284 was replaced by Yesayi Nchetsi (grammar, historiography, calligraphy). After Nchetsi's death (1338) the new Provost Tiratur Kiliketsi (calligraphy and miniature painting) moved the university to Hermon Monastery in Vayots Dzor. Later, after moving to Vorotnavank and, finally, Tatev Monastery, the university was headed by Hovhan Vorotnetsi (philosophy, theology) and Grigor Tatevatsi (philosophy, theology, calligraphy and miniature paintings).

Original text provided by the "Historical Environment and Historical-Cultural Museum Preserves Protection Service" NCSO of the Ministry of Culture of Armenia, edited by ICOMOS-Armenia and Karen Matevosian, co-author “Momik Miniaturist”, author “Momik”.