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Mysteries of Armenia

The Center of Enlightenment

Historians have repeatedly highlighted the peculiarity of development of the Armenian national life. It seemed to have progressed even under severe ethnic and religious oppression and under the absence of independent state system. The clergy that supported educational and scientific projects also secured the succession of cultural traditions and a high level of average literacy rate among the population. Unlike their European counterparts, Armenian universities could not function within the precincts of occupied city centers. So they were located in the foothills of high mountain ranges. Established at the end of the 13th century, Gladzor University was one of the most important centers of enlightenment. Its ruins are in Vayots Dzor region, 160 km south from Yerevan. Even though the University existed for less than a century, it managed to educate quite a few famous figures, who carried on the mission at new educational institutions. Apprenticeship at Gladzor University took eight years. Students took obligatory courses in Theology, Grammar, Logic, Rhetoric, Arithmetic, Geometry, Astronomy, Music, and were offered an elective course in Calligraphy. Tanade Church is still preserved on the territory of the University. It used to occupy the central side with numerous buildings that served as Chairs, auditoriums, as well as living quarters and storage rooms. Their ruins can still be seen today.

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