The Chapel of Yeghegnut
The church is located 0.6 km east of Yeghegnut village, Shahumyan region (Karvachar region) of the Artsakh Republic, on a picturesque hill (Karapetyan 2001, 40). Presently, it is under Azerbaijani occupation.
There is no historical data about Yeghegnut. According to monument expert Samvel Karapetyan, in the valley of the Lev River, on its right bank this rural area was known as Ghamshli in the 19th and 20th centuries. Numerous fragments of khachkars and inscribed stones used to be embedded in the walls of several houses in the village. The anonymous chapel is located not far from this village (Karapetyan 2001, 40-41).
The chapel is a single-nave hall with a barrel vault inwardly and a gable roof outwardly (Fig. 1). The vault and the roof are demolished. The eastern altar is rectangular, built of large and small rough stones with lime mortar (Fig. 2). The dimensions are 5.6X4.22 meters.
Fig. 1 The plan of the chapel, S. Karapetyan, Armenian cultural monuments in the region of Karabakh, Yerevan. p. 41.
The chapel used to have been plastered inwardly. The only entrance is from the west. There are old khachkars embedded into the walls of the chapel, many stones bear carved crosses (Figs. 3, 4, 5, 6). Inside the chapel there is a khachkar of the 10th-11th centuries composed with a double cross, which was once brought from the vicinity of the chapel (Fig. 7). A cross is depicted on one of the stones of the western wall of the chapel and there is a small inscription: “God have mercy on Gagik” (Fig. 8), another small inscription is documented on a slab embedded onto the southern facade: “Grigor… God have mercy” (Karapetyan 2001, 41). Based on the compositional and artistic features of the chapel, Samvel Karapetyan dates it to the 13th-14th centuries.
Fig. 4 Crosses of the chapel, photo by R. Hovsepyan.
Fig. 6 Crosses of the chapel, photo by R. Hovsepyan.
Fig. 8 The inscribed cross, photo by R. Hovsepyan.
Fig. 2 The western facade of the chapel, photo by R. Hovsepyan.
Fig. 3 Crosses of the chapel, photo by R. Hovsepyan.
Fig. 5 Crosses of the chapel, photo by R. Hovsepyan.
Fig. 7 The khachkar with a double-cross, photo by R. Hovsepyan.
The condition before and after the war
The chapel and its surroundings were not damaged during the Artsakh wars.
At the end of November 2020, after Shahumyan region passed under Azerbaijani control, no changes or destruction were documented in the area of the monument.
- Karapetyan 2001 – Karapetyan S., Armenian cultural monuments in the region of Karabakh, Yerevan.
The Chapel of Yeghegnut