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Surp Sion Monastery

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S. Sion Monastery

Herher Village (Vayots Dzor Marz), (719 p) with its Surp Sion Monastery (Holy Zion, better known to villagers as Goshavank - Gosh in this case meaning something like double in Turkish) one km NE on a hilltop, first attested in the 8th c. There are S. Sion and Astvatsatsin churches. On the interior S wall of the latter, an inscription reads: "By the will of Almighty God, this is the memorial inscription and the indelible monument of the glorious Baron Varham, son of Vasak, grandson of the great Magistros, and of his pious wife Sandoukht and of their handsome offspring Ukan, and of the powerful and great general Varham, and of his Christ-loving mother Mamkan, and the well-born lady wife of Gontza, who built this church with much toil and ornamented it with rich plate for my long life and that of my wife and our children Ukan ... An offering to the Holy Monastery in 732/AD 1283." To get to this monastery, start from the northern entrance sign to the village (reading Herher of course) and head south into the village, turning onto your third left dirt trail (before the road bends right). The monastery is about a half a kilometer from the turnoff, but hard to spot until close.