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Home :: Attractions :: Tsisernakaberd Memorial Complex
Tsisernakaberd Memorial Complex
Tsisernakaberd Memorial Complex in Yerevan is dedicated to the memory of the 1.5 million Armenians who perished in the first genocide of the 20th century, at the hands of the Turkish government. Completed in 1967, the Genocide Monument has since become a pilgrimage site and an integral part of Yerevan's architecture. Set high on a hill, dominating the landscape, it is in perfect harmony with its surroundings. The austere outlines convey the spirit of the nation that survived a ruthless campaign of extermination. 

The complex occupies 4500 square meters of territory and consists of three main buildings: the Memorial Wall, the Sanctuary of Eternity (Memorial Hall & Eternal Flame) and the Memorial Column "The Reborn Armenia." 

Before reaching the central part of the monument, visitors first observe a 100-meter long basalt Memorial Wall with the names of cities engraved in stone. The names also include the Armenian populations that were massacred by Turks during the Genocide campaign. Since 1996, the last portion of the Memorial Wall houses glass casings that contain soil taken from the tombs of political, and intellectual figures who raised their protest against the Genocide committed against the Armenians by the Turks. Among them are Armin Wegner, Hedvig Bull, Henry Morgenthau, Franz Werfel, Yohannes Lepsius, James Bryce, Anatol France, Jakomo Gorini, Benedict XV, Fritioff Nansen, Fayez El Husseyn. 

As part of the monument, an arrow-shaped stele of granite, 44 meters high, reaches to the sky, symbolizing the survival and spiritual rebirth of the Armenian people. Partly split vertically by a deep crevice, this tower symbolizes the tragic and violent dispersion of the Armenian people, and at the same tame, expresses the unity of the Armenian people. 

At the center of the Monument stands the circular Memorial Sanctuary. Its unroofed walls consist of twelve, tall, inward-leaning basalt slabs forming a circle. The shape of these walls simulates traditional Armenian khatchkars, which are stone slabs with large carved crosses at the center. These slabs also suggest figures in mourning. The level of the floor of the Genocide Monument is set at one and a half meters lower than the walkway. At its center, there is an eternal flame which memorializes all the victims of the Genocide. The steps leading down to the eternal flame are steep, thus requiring visitors to bow their heads reverently as they descend. 

From 1988-1990 the Khatchkars (Cross-Stones) were mounted in the vicinity of the Genocide Monument to commemorate Armenians massacred in the 1980s by the Azeri government, in the Azerbaijani cities of Sumgait, Kirovabad (Ganzak) and Baku. 

In 1995, the Museum and Institute (architects S. Kalashyan, L. Mkrtchyan, A. Tarkhanyan, sculptor F. Arakelyan) was built near Tsisernakaberd to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. Today, the Museum & Institute functions as a research center within the Armenian National Academy of Sciences. 

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