One of the precious samples of Armenian medieval miniature masterpieces, the Gospel of Tsughrut revitalized. As the local residents attributed to the Gospel many wonders, considered it the guardian of the highland village Tsughrut and did not wish to part with it even temporarily the employees of the Restoration department of Matenadaran went to the village to treat and restore the Gospel in place on October 8-18, 2016.

The parchment manuscript-book contains four gospels of the Bible’s New Testament. It was copied in 974. The scriptorium and the painter of the Gospel are unknown. The writer’s name was Hovhannes, the recipient of the manuscript was a priest Eghia. The manuscript consists of 394 pages, has a silver cover and thirteen miniatures. The manuscript is known for miniatures’ high artistic merit, exceptional expressiveness, and its unique structure, which reflects the tracks of ancient manuscript art. The Gospel was brought to the Akhaltsikhe’s Tsughrut village from Ilija village of Western Armenia, and since 1830 it has been carefully preserved, protected and, as the holy relic of the village, transferred to the generations by the Saponjyan family.
Three employees of Matenadaran stayed in Tsughrut village for manuscript restoration for 10 days. There were two restorers – Arthur Petrosyan, Artavazd Ayvazyan, and a biologist – Lusine Margaryan. They took a whole laboratory with them, treated and restored the manuscript. The experts also repaired the cabinet in which the Gospel is kept.
“This is a unique case that a manuscript is reconstructed outside the Matenadaran and our employees carried out this work in another place, not in appropriate conditions. However, considering the fact that since 50s-60s of the last century the attempts of moving this manuscript to the Matenadaran were unproductive, this was the only way of salvation of the manuscript,” said the Head of the Restoration Department of the Matenadaran, Gayane Eliazyan.
The restoration works of manuscript were carried out thanks to funding of the American Research Institute of the South Caucasus, which was brought about by diligent searches of Brandenburg University of Technology’s student, Arusyak Baldryan.



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