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The typology and Chronology of Khachkar
Khachkars of the 15-17th centuries
Upon the political and economical decline of the country in the 14th century, khachkar culture diminished as well. Khachkars lost their functional and compositional diversity and were transformed to mere stele over a grave. Hundreds of examples of khachkar art from 15-17th centuries appear in Gegharqunik, Tsghuk (Sisian), Kotayk, Vayoc Dzor. Jugha represents a unique school, with khachkars that one time reached thousands in number. The two main directions that emerged in 15th century, in essence, found their roots in the two classic styles of 12-13th centuries: full decoration of the surface and, on the contrary, the undecorated depth. Already in the second quarter of the 15th century a steady compositional scheme is forming, which becomes dominant and survives until 1720s. Decoration wise, it contrasts multi-crosses and full decoration of the stele, simple netting, rectangular segments and multi-winged stars. The carving becomes superficial; relief lines widen and become plain, which gives a certain smoothness to whole composition. The "return" of biblical themes and the appearance of new themes is characteristic. The free interpretation of these themes and the import of folk-individualistic elements into canonical compositions make these khachkars a rich source for folk perceptions. The reinstatement of several themes and decorative motives after nearly two and half centuries, although with other types of decorative style, can be explained by the khachkars practical feature, since at this time they were presented exclusively to save of souls of the dead.

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Endangered Khachkars

Canadian Scholars Signed Petition on Issue of Destruction of Armenian Monuments in Nakhichevan
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Azerbaijani Soldiers Destroy Armenian Khachkars in Nakhichevan
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