Dadivank (Khutavank)

Founded in the I c.

Dadi or Khuta temple there is a large valley in the place where Gharabagh and Mrav mountain-chains get closer by a sloppy hill (Shahumyan district of Artsakh). On that small, but very beautiful plain's central hill is built one of the remarkable constructions of Armenian architecture - Dadivank or Khutavank.

Etymology of "Dadi" and "Khuta" names are given in two ways in our lithograph- one connected with Armenian custom, the other connected with the district. The first one is connected with one of the 70 students of the Apostle St. Thaddeus, named Dadi or Dado, who preached Christianity in Artsakh and died there.

The temple was robbed by Persians, then Arabs, Seljuks, later by Osman Turks and again by Persians.

The Ancient church or is situated on the northern slope of the complex. The second church, which is considered one of the ancients too, is adjacent to the first one from south. The western hall had probably served as a chapel.

The most important construction period of Dadi temple is the first half of 13c, when begins construction of new buildings. One of the first buildings built during that period is considered Grigor episcope’s vestibule-chapel. The inscription on the right side of the door shows that it was built in 1224 by Grigor episcope. Numerous khachkars were put inside the vestibule’s walls. Grigor episcope vestibule-chapel had been the grave-house of Verin Khachen's prince family throughout centuries. From inside the floor is covered with tombstones, parts of writings on which are already erased.

Arzu-Khatun church-monument stands out like a wonderful monument in Dadi temple complex. Armenian architecture's remarkable and famous this monument is situated in the eastern part of temple's territory, on the brink of the precipice going down to the deep canyon. All the other constructions are placed towards north and south-west from it. Through monk and worldly these buildings in two rows, from the main gate of the rampart to the monument stretches a wide and long passage, which in literature is called «poghota» (avenue). The temple was founded in 1214 by Haterk's great prince Vakhtang Barepasht's wife Arzu-Khatun. The large building inscription of the church (19 long lines) preserved on its southern wall tells about Arzu-Khatun and the construction she started in detail. The inside walls' plaster, destroyed and chapped in some places is covered with badly-preserved frescos.

Bell tower is situated in the western part of the complex, in front of the gate. The two-story construction was built in 13c by Dopeants prince Vahram's son Sargis episcope. The first floor is death from all sides, in western side the staircase goes up to second floor, where in a cell surrounded by walls, carved fronts directed towards west fully preserved Dadi temple's two matchless khachkars. 13c created these monuments are the most magnificent ones among thousands of Armenian khachkars.

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