Mkhitar Gosh's Colophon


The Aghuanian Chronicle

[1] Glory to our savior, Jesus, and with Him to the Father and the [Holy] Spirit, Who allowed us to pause here in our writing of the Law Book. Although we previously said, when writing the brief colophon [attached to the Law Book], that it was completed, that was not the case. Instead, we now want to take a rest, writing what we will, but not hindering those who wish to write [on the same topic] and to expand upon it. Although in the year in which we began writing we wrote down a [large] part of the Law Book, due to persecutions which were visited upon us--domestic, not foreign ones--the writing of this memorial was delayed. Nonetheless, we also considered it necessary to provide a list of the succession of the patriarchs of the Aghuans, to reconcile it with all the other [lists] which we now possess. That is one reason for [this] writing. Second, should anyone want to write a history describing the events following those which appear in Movse's Dasxurants'i's History--which fully describes the House of the Aghuans--it will be easy to take the list of patriarchs from here. [Such a future author] will not find all the names [of the patriarchs] in his [Movse's'] History, only those about whom he wrote. No one has written [about the events] from that period [i.e. from the end of Movse's' work] to the present. Should someone come forth [to write about the Aghuans] [our list of the patriarchs] will be extremely important.

Now let us provide the list.

List of the patriarchs of the Aghuans who sat after Lord Elisha, who had come from Jerusalem.

1. The blessed Shup'xaghishoy.
2. Matt'e'.
3. Sahak.
4. Kare'n.
5. Pant.

6. Ghazar. He constructed Ghazarapat, which is located in Beghame'j and the blessed church of Pantaleon which he built with an awe-inspiring appearance. And from [the reign of] Elisha until [the reign of] Saint Gregory, 300 years [elapsed]. Then the Aghuans requested as kat'oghikos from the Armenians the blessed Grigoris, who had been ordained into the patriarchate at 15 years of age and who met his death from the barbarians. It was the 101st year of Rome [of the saeculum novum = A.D. 348]. And these are the patriarchs who sat at Ch'ol:

Saint Yohan.

[2] Now in the year when dating according to the Armenian [Era] commenced [A.D. 551/552], they moved the seat of the kat'oghikosate to [the city of] Partaw and seated as kat'oghikos Abas, who reigned for 23 years. And it was the custom of the ancestors [in that period] to address letters thus: "From the kat'oghikos of the Aghuans, Lp'nik', and Ch'ols..."

Lord Viroy [reigned as kat'oghikos] for 33 years, a blessed and radiantly virtuous man. Year 75 of the Armenian Era [A.D. 626].

Lord Zak'aria, a blessed and pure man, 17 years.
Lord Yohan, 25 years.
Lord Uxtane's, 12 years.
Lord Eghiazar, 6 years. He was chosen for the primacy by God, in 137 A.E. [A.D. 688].
Lord Nerse's, 15 years. He followed the Chalcedonian heresy.
Lord Sime'ovn, 1 1/2 years.
Lord Mik'aye'l, 35 years. This was 190 A.E. [741].
Lord Anastas, 4 years.
Lord Yuse'p', 15 years.
Lord Dawit', 4 years.
Another Lord Dawit', 9 years. This was 225 A.E. [776].
Lord Matt'e', 1 1/2 years.
Lord Movse's, 1 1/2 years.
Lord Aharon, 2 years.
Lord Soghomon, 1/2 year.
Lord T'e'odoros, 4 years. This was 234 A.E. [785].
Lord Soghomon, 11 years.
Lord Yovhanne's, 25 years.
Lord Movse's, 1/2 year.
Lord Dawit', 28 years.
Lord Yovse'p', 22 years. This was 327 A.E. [878].
Lord Samue'l, 15 years.
Lord Yovnan, 8 years.
Lord Simeo'n, 21 years.
Lord Dawit', 35 years. This was 378 A.E. [929].
Lord Sahak, 25 years.
Lord Gagik, 10 years.
Lord Dawit', 6 years.

Lord Petros, 12 years. During his lifetime [Petros] stepped down from the [patriarchal] throne and was succeeded by Lord Movse's, a monk from P'ar'isos.

Now after Lord Movse's the patriarchal throne was occupied by the man of God, Lord Markos.

[Markos] was followed by Lord Yovse'p', then by another Lord Markos, who was succeeded by Lord Step'annos, who was succeeded by Lord Yovhanne's.

Then Lord Step'annos was called to the kat'oghikosate while still a youth and he held the patriarchate for 1 1/2 years.

[3] After his death, the district of Aghuania was without a patriarch for 8 years, nor was there any bishop present. Consequently, those dedicating themselves to the priesthood were taken to another province for ordination. Furthermore, the supply of chrism had become so reduced that they were baptizing children with just water, and some folk were annointing with plain olive oil. Now after 8 years, in 588 A.E. [1139], the blessed bishop Lord Sahak arrived from Armenia, from the court of the holy patriarch, from Lord Grigoris, kat'oghikos of the Armenians. At [Grigoris'] order, [Sahak] came to the district of the Aghuanians at the request and the undertaking of vardapet Grigor of our land. [Grigor] was a student of the glorious and renowned vardapet Dawit'. Now when Lord Sahak arrived in the land of the Aghuans, he collected everyone in the House of King Abas Bagratuni, son of King Kiwrike', who assembled everyone in his presence in the fortress called Tawush, where the holy fathers and bishops also had gathered. [The gathering included]:

King Dawit, brother of King Abas,
Lord Step'annos, son of Kiwrike', their brother,
Vardapet Sargis, student of Vardapet Dawit',
Grigor, archbishop of Gandzak,
Bishop Sahak, student of Vardapet Sargis,
Step'annos, bishop of the district of Koght' and the city of Shamk'or,
Sargis, bishop of Shamiramadzor,
Samue'l, bishop of Kabr (?Karboy),
Father Sargis of Xamshivank'.

The leaders of the assembly were Lord Sahak the court bishop of the Armenian kat'oghikos and the ascetic and venerable vardapet Sargis. Thus, with great ceremony and renowned acclaim they ordained as kat'oghikos of the Aghuans, Grigoris, the nephew (father's brother's son) of Lord Step'annos, [former] kat'oghikos of the Aghuans. Grigoris was a youth when he was ordained. He was the son of Ge'org, brother's son of Karchak and grandson of Karapet. The day they gathered [for the ordination] was simultaneously the feast of Pentecost and the Descent of the Holy Spirit in the month of Tre'[June]. After this [ceremony] those assembled departed to their own places. On the Feast of the Transfiguration, once again all [the clerics] assembled in the fortress called Kat'oghikosi k'ar [Kat'oghikos' Rock], the same aforementioned bishops, vardapets, holy fathers--even more vardapets than before--and more priests. On that day they ordained two more bishops and blessed a large quantity of holy chrism. This was distributed everywhere in large and generous portions. Until the day of the [Feast of the] Holy Cross, they held this spiritual celebration, rejoicing together in the glory of God.

[4] Now in the month of Are'g, on the 18th day of the month, from the evening of Friday to dawn on Saturday, which was the day of the Feast of Saint Ge'org [September 30, 1139], God's wrath moved over the land with violent winds and unbelievable tremors and destruction and reached this land of Aghuania, as is written: "who shakes the earth out of its place, and its pillars tremble," [Job 9, 6] and in another [passage]: "who looks at the earth and it trembles" [Psalms 104, 32]. Because of the tremors there was vast damage in many places in the districts of P'ar'isos and Xach'e'n, on the plains and in the mountains. The capital city of Gandzak was dashed to the depths, burying its residents [under the earth] because on four sides it folded them into its bosom. In the mountains, numerous castles and villages collapsed together with monasteries and churches, crumbling upon the heads of their inhabitants. An incalculable number [of people] perished in the collapse of structures and towers. This occurred in the year 588 A.E. [1139]. Now on the same day as the earthquake, the king of the Georgians, named Dimetre', son of King Dawit', arose and came to the district of Ar'an with many troops. He came to the city of Gandzak under the direction of his military commander, Iwane'. Behaving in a merciless and bestial fashion, they fell upon the remaining survivors, generally subjecting all of them to the sword or slavery. Although they observed that the city which previously had been beautiful, had suddenly been transformed into hell--for piles of gold and the bones of the multitude which had fallen were heaped together--nonethless they did not want to take pity on them. Rather, they dug up the gold and silver treasures and by captivity and torments they punished them more than the earthquake had. Now on the day of the quake our vardapets Sargis and Grigor were translated to Christ from the severity of the blows. Some days later a certain Tachik emir called Qara-Sonqur (Xarasngur), [whose title] translates "world-ruler" in Persian, arose from the land of Persia and came to the district of Ar'an. He commenced building up and fortifying this land, rebuilding the ruined walls of Gandzak city and making peace throughout its confines. Next he turned against the district under the sway of the king of the Georgians, to exact vengeance for his own district which had been ruined by his hand. For previously Gandzak with all its borders had been under his own jurisdiction. So he went to the land of the Georgians once and then again and terrified them, taking their secure castles and conquering them. He returned by way of the mountainous region of Gegham. Crossing the Arax River, he reached the borders of Atrpatakan where he died in the year 589 A.E. [1140].

[5] Now Qara-Sonqur had designated one of his servants named Xuhtught as the ruler (shahap) of the city of Gandzak. [Xuhtught] rebelled against the sultan and brazenly and boldly sallied outside the borders of his rule. Taking numerous troops from Gandzak, he came to the mountainous areas of Hadaher, reaching the fortress called Kat'oghikos' Rock and [the fortress] close to it called Karapetants' k'ar [Precursors' Rock]. He besieged both of them for many days and, with great effort, he took and destroyed both, pulling them apart and burning them. The sacred churches were thus trampeled by the impious ones until Kat'oghikos' Rock was totally obliterated and destroyed, in the year 591 A.E. [1142]. He continued with this rebellion for some days. But then a military commander named Chavli (Ch'awli) arrived from Persia. The latter held the authority, position, and force [called] xaran Kosrin. With countless troops Chavli came to the gates of Gandzak where Xuhtught had rebelled. [Chavli] besieged the city for a month, captured it, seized Xuhtught, blinded him, and conquered everyone in the year 592 A.E. [1143]. In the same year the bishop Lord Step'annos, son of King Kiwregh, died in the fortress named Xale"nchak'ar. Chavli, becoming more arrogant, turned upon the Xach'e'n areas, took all their fortresses, demolished the churches, burned the monasteries, killed the nobles, and captured the troops. Thus generally he destroyed all by the sword and captive-taking. Then he returned to the land of Persia. Now the following year he came again to the district of Ar'an. He swiftly travelled to the fortress of Tawush where King Abas had fortified himself. With great effort he besieged the fortress for an extended time and finally captured it. Abas, meanwhile, had gone off to the king of Georgia in the year 594 A.E. [1145]. In the same year King Dawit', Kiwrike's son, was translated to Christ at the fortress called Mtsnaberd. And his son, Kiwrike', ruled after him.

Chavli again went to the areas of Xach'e'n, Tandzik' and Adaxay because the castles he had previously taken had not remained under his control. For a few of the surviving nobles (azats) there who were [hiding] in the forests around those castles again took back their fortresses and again were in rebellion against the Tachiks. For this reason, the enraged Chavli came to wreak vengeance on them. He was unable to retake the fortresses, but he did thoroughly ruin the entire district, burning the blessed monastery called Dadi vank' which had been founded by the apostle [Thaddeus]. Then he went to the land of the Medes. Rebelling against the sultan, he perished wickedly near the city of Zangan in the year 595 A.E. [1146].


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