Literature in Western Armenia

  • by Western Armenia, May 16, 2023 in Culture

The path to the creation of a book begins with writing. In ancient Armenian mythology, the god of education, wisdom and learning was Tyr. Our distant ancestors began to write with images. It is no coincidence that in many languages, the concepts “to write” and “to draw” almost always coincide: “to write” means both to write and to draw.

The language of the official inscriptions of the Araratian kingdom was Armenian, and the writing was cuneiform. About 600 texts are currently known.

In 405 Mesrop Mashtots, with the active support of King Vramshapuh and Catholicos Sahak Partev, created the Armenian alphabet of 36 letters. Immediately there followed the creation of an extensive network of schools, followed by gigantic translation and cultural work. Beginning with V century books were copied in many Armenian monasteries and were spread all over the country. In V-XVIII centuries Armenian handwritten books were written first on parchment, and then on paper. In medieval Armenia there were individual, church and monastery libraries of handwritten books. A book of more than 20,000 surviving Armenian manuscripts is preserved in the current Armenian library.

The first Armenian printer and initiator of the Armenian book printing was Hakob Meghapart, who founded his printing house in Venice.