UNESCO / Historical churches 2/4 – Tourism attractions of Isfahan
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- Historical churches . Historical churches 2/4 - Tourism attractions of Isfahan . IRAN . Saint Catherine Nunnery . Saint George Church . Saint Sarkis church . Surp Grigor Lusavoritch Church . Tourism attractions of Isfahan .
Historical churches 2/4 – Tourism attractions of Isfahan, Iran
Iran has a city in its middle known as Nesfe Jahan (half of the world). Every corner you go is full of different constructions every which has been a part of this city and has hidden a story at its heart. Every historical period has a print of specific architecture on the city based on its special characteristics.
Meanwhile religion has played a role in forming the construction of this city and exquisite constructions have been built in any quarter based on residents’ beliefs. Isfahan is a city in which people lived with diverse religions during the history and had a building in the city. In some quarters the mosques show the presence of the Muslims and in some places holy shrines of minorities have been formed.
In Shah Abbas (safavid) era Armenian citizens have been transplanted to Isfahan in order to prevent depredation and incursion of Ottoman Turks.
The Armenian resided in Julfa and as soon as entered Isfahan they built some churches in the city by the permission of Shah Abbas. These churches were inspired by Iranian architecture and art and had differences with Armenian churches in appearance external embellishments.
Churches are places for Christians to pray and are of high sacredness for them. Then historic churches in addition to religious value are historically valuable for people. Today we go to historic churches of Isfahan and introduce them to you, but it is better to see travel guide to Isfahan. For more information.
4.Saint George Church
Saint George church is one of the historic churches in Isfahan which is of special importance to the Armenian because of holly stones in it. These stones transferred there by the command of Shah Abbas.
Based on some inscriptions installed in front of the church altar, the famous merchant Khajeh Nazar has built it in 1611. He attempted to keep the residence of Christians in Isfahan in Safavid era. Recognizing their religious beliefs he placed an order to ruin Holly Echmiadzin and transferred its stones to Isfahan. Since it was impossible work, just 15 pieces of the altar stones and different parts of it brought to George church.
Three of stones placed in front of the altar in shape of a cross and the rests are in the northern court. Thanks to these holly stones this church changed into a shrine for Armenian pilgrims.
Address: Hakim Nezami Ave. Julfa
5. Saint Catherine Nunnery
Saint Catharine Nunnery (church) was constructed in 1623 at the time of Safavids reign as a monastery for nuns and named after Saint Catharine The Nun. This church was constructed by Yaghyaz Lazarian a rich Armenian merchant in Julfa and consisted of a library, classrooms, chambers for nuns, a dining room, and a kitchen.
The images of the first nuns in this monastery named Roisana, Tagohi, and Herisimeh, who came to Isfahan at the time of Shah Abbas coincident with Armenians migration, are observed. This monastery had 33 nuns in 1702 which reached to 200 nuns after four centuries activity. When the last nun Elizabeth Israilian passed away in 1954, this monastery changed into a church for the Christians. Later Bagrat Vartazarian built a new building as an orphanage for unattended children instead of nuns’ chambers. While widening the street in its vicinity in 1970 a big part of its yard demolished. This historical construction registered in Iranian national heritage list No. 9090 in 2002.
Address: Ramin Alley, Khaqani St. Charsoo, Julfa.
6. Saint Sarkis church
Saint Sarkis church dates back to 1659 and Safavid era. This church initially called Amena Pergich but when Saint Sarkis church ruined and its furniture transferred to this church in 1850 its name changed. The materials used in constructing this building are brick and mud and external walls have frames with brick face. Internal walls had very beautiful paintings but demolished because of the damages to the church.
It registered in Iranian national heritage list No. 7645 in 2002.
Address: Namazkhaneh alley, Khaqani St. Yerevan quarter, Julfa
7. Surp Grigor Lusavoritch Church
Surp Grigor Lusavoritch church which is known as Saint Lusavoritch church is a construction dated back to Safavid era made of bricks and mud in 1633. The plan is rectangular measures 17 ×5.7 m. internal walls are ornamented with painting which have covered the whole walls in the past but demolished today and just a part of them survived.
There is a prayer hall (Namaz khaneh) next to the church which made in 1714. This historical place registered in Iranian national heritage list in 2002 No7648.
Address: Midane Koochak Alley, Khaghani St. Julfa