Erebuni Archeological Museum

The Erebuni Archeological Museum houses exhibits unearthed at the Erebuni and Teyshebaini (Karmir Bur) sites. It was opened in 1968.

Nothing makes the experience of visiting this fascinating museum more complete than knowing that it was located at the exact spot where the current capital Yerevan was born over 2800 years ago.

As a matter of fact, the reserve-museum which was founded in 1968 is set at the foot of the Erebuni Fortress, or ''the Fortress of Blood'' (Arin Berd). The citadel had a military strategic location, as well as being the major political, economic and cultural center of the vast kingdom. Therefore, the museum itself is filled with archeological gems and հistorical treasures from the Urartian, post-Urartian and later periods. They were mostly excavated in the 50’s and 60’s of the 20th century as well as during a period that extended from the 1950’s until 1970’s.

As you enter the museum, in order to better understand and have a clear overview of the context, you will be greeted by a huge map on the wall as well as an architectural ‘’maquette’’ reconstruction of the great citadel.

On your right several Cuneiform inscriptions on basalt slabs which were inset into the walls of the fortress will certainly command your attention. The alignments and the perfectly uniform characters organized in a complete visual harmony into the stone are a sight to behold, and notably, the central one which states the foundation of the city by the King Argishti I in 782 B.C.

The foundation of Erebuni marks the birth of the present day capital Yerevan. This makes Yerevan one of the very few old cities that has its birth certificate, a visual proof of the exact birth of the city.

As you go deeper into the museum, countless archeological finds will be there for you to explore, from iron jewelry to pottery to all kinds of weapons, agricultural metal tools, parts of stone pipelines for water supply and more. Even different types of grains that have stood the test of centuries due to fire oxidation are displayed.

A 2700 year old, massive 750-liter clay wine jug will undoubtedly catch your attention as you continue your walk, and if you look very closely it is fascinating to see how very small marks were carved into it, as a way to measure the fluid.

There is also an inner courtyard in the center of the museum, where you can find some interesting finds such as water pipes made of tuff. Displayed there is also the only cuneiform inscription found from the Syunik region, which was turned into a khachkar in the Middle Ages.

The museum is also famous for the rhytons which were found near the fortress during construction works in 1968. Five of them were found in a large vessel buried in the ground. One of them is a calf-headed rhyton believed to be dating back to the IV-III centuries BC, it depicts a person sitting on a throne which is believed to be the Greek god Dionysus or Asclepius.

A true walk into History, and the closest glance we can get at what day to day life was a few thousand years ago.

In order to fully understand what Yerevan is all about, it is greatly advised to start off from here, from the focal point from which the capital, as we know it today, has emerged.

Museum website: https://www.erebuni.am/index.php?lang=en

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