Armenian Jerusalem
array of antennas on compound roofs
This project has been supported by the Gulbenkian philanthropic Foundation, the Armenian Patriarchate of Jerusalem, and members of the worldwide Armenian community. Reproductions of the genealogical documents [domar’s] are courtesy Photo Garo, Jerusalem. Copyright © 2007 Arthur Hagopian
            The   Armenian   presence   in   Jerusalem dates   back   to   the   4th   Century AD   [some sources   assert   Armenians   first   came   to the    region    around    90BCE].    Armenia, under    King    Tiridates    IIi,    became    the first   country   to   adopt   Christianity   as   the state   religion   of   Armenia,   thus   making the Armenian   Kingdom   the   first   state   to embrace          Christianity          officially. Following     that,     a     big     number     of Armenian   monks   came   to   the   Cradle   of Christianity      -      Jerusalem,      which      is considered    the    essence    of    their    faith.    The construction of St. James Armenian Monastery began in the same century.     An Armenian scriptorium was established in the 5th century.             A   secular   Armenian   community   was   established   in   the   6th   Century   over   the   area   neighboring Mount Zion, inside the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem.                 This   Armenian    community    (nowadays    called    the    citizens,    "Kaghakatsiner")    was    mainly composed of merchants and artisans.             The Armenian   patriarchate   was   established   in   the   7th   Century;   while   the Armenian   Monastery was last expanded in the 12th Century.             The   Armenian   Quarter   developed   gradually   around   St.   James   Monastery,   and   took   its   modern shape in the 19 Century.             Before   World   War   I,   the   number   of Armenians   in   Jerusalem   was   around   2500   people.   During   the British   Mandate   of   Palestine,   thousands   of   1915   Genocide   survivors   found   refuge   in   St.   James Monastery   from   1918   and   onwards.   In   1925   around   15,000   [some   sources   put   the   figure   at   25,000] Armenians have lived all over Palestine, mainly in the Armenian Quarter of Jerusalem.             In   1947   around   1,500   Armenian   Genocide   survivors   repatriated   to   the   Soviet   Republic   of Armenia (East Armenia). In   1967   East   Jerusalem   and   the   West   Bank   were   occupied   by   the   Israeli   forces   (which   was   under the   Jordanian   rule).   This   occupation   resulted   in   a   sharp   drop   off   the   Armenian   population   in general.             After   the   collapse   of   the   USSR   and   the   independence   of   Armenia   (1991),   nearly   3,500 Armenians   immigrated   to   the   state   of   Israel.   The   majority   of   them   (3,000)   settled   inside   Israel, while only 150 of them are living now in Jerusalem.             Nowadays,   the   number   of   Armenians   who   live   in   the   Old   City   of   Jerusalem   is   less   than   one thousand.     Church of Holy Archangels             The   local   "Kaghakatsi"   Armenian   Community   call   this   church   "Der   el   Zatouneh",   which   means the   Convent   of   the   Olive   Tree.   This   convent   is   located   in   the Armenian   Quarter   of   the   Old   City   of Jerusalem. It is the house of Annas who was involved in the trial of Jesus.             Inside   the   convent   is   an   olive   tree,   to   which   Christ   was   bound   during   his   trial   under   Annas. There   is   also   a   chapel   associated   with   the   flagellation   of   Christ   and   a   prison   where   Jesus   was held before the judgment under Annas.     The fruits of the sacred olive tree are miraculous.             The   Convent   of   "el   Zatouneh"   stands   on   the   threshing   floor   of   "Araunah   the   Jebusite",   where David   saw   God   standing   between   heaven   and   earth,   with   a   naked   sword   in   his   Hand   stretched   out against Jerusalem.     The foundation of the convent was laid by Queen Helen in the 4th Century AD.     Dr. Gaby Kevorkian     Former Chairman - JABU     (April 29, 2015)
2015 Celebrating  90 years of JABU From strenght to strength From strenght to strength