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“Etchmiadzin Cathedral” Etchmiadzin, Armenia

Etchmiadzin Cathedral
Etchmiadzin Cathedral (Photo Credits Unknown)

Etchmiadzin cathedral holds the distinction of being the oldest church in the world that was originally built by a state. Located in Armenia (the world’s first Christian country) and still in operation, it is the headquarters of the Armenian Apostolic Church. It was built by Saint Gregory the Illuminator between 301 and 303 AD in what is now known as Armenian style, known for its emphasis on height, pointed domes, and stone materials. The idea for the location is said to have come to St. Gregory in a vision he had of Christ striking the ground with a golden hammer. Etchmiadzin translates to “the place where the only begotten descended.”


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