The Tsrtnot Bridge
The bridge is located in the Republic of Artsakh's Nor-Shahumyan (Karvachar) region, in the middle of two historical rural settlements, Tsrtnot and Kholozants, about 1.5 kilometers east of Kholozants (Karapetyan 2019, 394).
There is no historical information about the bridge. The settlements of Tsrtnot and Kholozants are referenced in the lithographs of Dadivank (CAE 5,216), and they are also recorded in the 1763 deed of purchase, along with other monastic lands (Karapetyan 1999, 55). When nomadic tribes (Kurds) settled down in the Karvachar area, they gave the villages new names that were distorted or translated versions of the previous Armenian names, such as Soyughbulagh (Tsrtaghbyur) and Kholazey-Akhasl.
The monument is a single-span bridge made of unpolished stones, mostly rubble and lime mortar (Figs. 1-3). The width of the passage is 2.05 meters, while the span is 7.10 meters. Samvel Karapetyan, a monument expert, dates the bridge to the 13th–16th centuries based on structural features and comparison with other bridges (Karapetyan 2019, 394).
Fig. 1 The general view of the bridge, photo by S. Danielyan.
Fig. 3 The composition of the bridge, photo by S. Danielyan.
Fig. 2 A single-span section of the bridge, photo by S. Danielyan.
The condition before, during, and after the war
The bridge was not damaged during the Second Artsakh War and is still standing after Azerbaijan's occupation of Karvachar. In the first half of the 1980s, the Azerbaijanis of Soyughbulagh "repaired" the bridge. They "repaired" the bridge by completely covering the bridge's passage section with concrete, and as a result, the weight of the vault doubled (Karapetyan 1999, 55).
- CAE 5 – Corpus of Armenian Epigraphy, issue 5, Artsakh, Yerevan, 1982.
- Karapetyan, 1999 - Karapetyan S., Monuments of Armenian culture in the regions occupied by Soviet Azerbaijan, Yerevan.
- Karapetyan, 2019 - Karapetyan S., Mravakank, Yerevan.
The Tsrtnot Bridge