Vorotnaberd fortress

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Vorotnaberd (Vorotn, Vorotan) is located in the Tsghuk province of the Mets Hayk’s Syunik district, on the right shore of the Vorotan River (near of Vorotan village, Syunik district). Eghishe (the Armenian historian) had mentioned «Vorotnaberd» as one of the fortresses and settlement territories, which were emancipated from the Persian dictatorship during the Vardanants liberation of 450. Stepanos Orbelyan (13) referred to Vorotnaberd as one of Syunik’s important fortresses, which dated back (1075-1094) to Syuniats (Kapan) kingdom of Senekerim 1st.

In 1104 the Seljuk-Turks invaded Vorotnaberd in 1219. Ivane Zakaryan then liberated it and handed Vorotnaberd to Liparit Orbelyan. In 1386 the army of Lenktemur invaded Syunik and also Vorotnaberd. In 1724 Davit Bek liberated Vorotnaberd from Melik Baghri.

Vorotnaberd is in ruin presently. It has a north-western and a south-eastern stretched saddle-like scheme. It was supported with the fort-walls only from the south-western side. There is a stronghold 50m. higher than the rest of the territory. To the north-west from the stronghold, there is a rampart made with large basalt stones, which has a gate on the south-western side connected to the fortress through the arch. On the eastern side of the stronghold, there are the semi-circular ruins of a chapel. The tunnel to the Vorotan River was located there also.

All around the whole territory of the fortress is covered with fractured basalt walls of small circle-like or rectangular dwellings. Noteworthy are the twin square-like monuments (only the lower parts are preserved) at the south-western part of the fortress (more than 2m. height). 3km. north-west of Vorotnaberd there is Vorotnavank (Vorotna monastery), and on the foot of the citadel’s canyon above the Vorotan river, there is an arch-like bridge built by Melik-Tangu in 1855.

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