Unknown — but open, mysterious — but hospitable, distant — but easily accessible, great in its antiquity — but modern, all of that and much more - Artsakh.
The northeastern part of the Armenian Highlands has always been in the center of the World's history: archaeological research and findings — the tooth of a cave bear, the jaw of a Neanderthal man, the ancient labor tools and other valuable exhibits — proof that life here existed already three hundred thousand years ago. For those who are interested in the early period of mankind history, Artsakh is a great opportunity to plunge into the past and visit the karst caves where discoveries were made and watch the work of the archaeologists.
If the Paleolithic is a leap too deep into the past, then moving closer to our time, one can find the first written mention of this land as the state of Urtekhini in the cuneiform of the neighboring state of Urartu in the 8th century BC. The god Khaldi, the chief of the triad of supreme deities of that time, was not only the patron saint of heaven, life, crafts and fertility, but also revered as the god of winemaking. The variety and number of indigenous grape sorts in Artsakh is really amazing; nowadays one of the brightest and most widely cultivated varieties is Khdoghni.
Later, Strabo, Pliny, Ptolemy, Plutarch and other ancient authors write about this land as a part of Armenian state. The life of the region does not stop even for a second, and despite frequent wars and invasions from the outside - winemaking and viticulture are always in the spotlight: new vineyards are cultivated, wine is exported to other countries. In Tigranakert, the fortress of the 1st century BC, the recent discovery of which can be compared with the discovery of Troy at the end of the 19th century, karas jugs (clay jugs) for storing wine and grape seeds were found.
The beginning of our time is already marked on the map of Artsakh by the Dadivank monastery — one of the first Christian churches built at the place of the death of one of the disciples of Christ — Thaddeus. It will be curious to mention that Christianity and viticulture in Artsakh gave rise to some unique symbiosis, and if before the adoption of Christianity in the symbolism of Artsakh art there was often a vine, then after - it began to coexist with stylized images of the cross. On the gravestones of the palace complex in the village of Togh, Hadrut region there are images of feasts with grapes, jugs, musicians and angels on the same stone.
As thousands of years ago, so now winegrowing and winemaking in Artsakh continue to flourish: the unique ecosystem of the region, the purest air and water, the elevation above sea level, mild climate, a large number of sunny days, diligence and manual care of the inhabitants for the vine contribute to the appearance of wine, taste which many professionals admire.Learn more