Author Topic: Thoughts on the Armenian Rite?  (Read 594 times)

Offline TheReturnofLive

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Thoughts on the Armenian Rite?
« on: September 22, 2019, 03:33:24 PM »
Armenia was the first nation to convert to Christianity, and whose Church was founded, according to Tradition, by the Holy Apostles Bartholomew and Jude. It was subsequently expanded due to Syriac Christians and of course, Saint Gregory the Illuminator.

My sympathies are to the Armenian Christians, who have been - pretty much - persecuted since the Apostles set foot on the land to this day. They suffered under Pagan Rome, Zoroastrian Persia, the Islamic Iranian / Persian dynasties, the Ottomans / Turks (who committed a horrible, horrible genocide against them - and its not in controversy, they really did try to wipe out all of the Armenian population), the Soviets, and today, even those West Armenians who live in Turkey, who still are politically repressed.

Nonetheless, they still exist and are still trampling on forward.

When the Council of Chalcedon happened, and they got news of it, they as a local Church rejected it, and are a member of the non-Chalcedonians. Obviously, as is the case with every Eastern Catholic Rite but the Maronites, a portion of the Armenians entered into communion with Rome but were able to keep their liturgical rite.

Although their liturgical rite had origins in the Syriac Rite, it developed on its own with significant Latin influence and local Byzantine influence (most likely due to the neighboring nations of Circassia and Georgia), and is its own unique Rite that isn't really too comparable to any other.

The only Rite comparable to the Armenian Rite is the Maronite Rite, which also developed with origins in the Syriac Rite with significant Latin influence. However, even then, the Rites are still pretty unique from each other. There's an obvious symbiotic relationship, for those who pay attention, between liturgy and art, and it's unique to see how something as unique as the Armenian Rite has influenced Armenian Culture, and vice-versa.

Finally, in much the same way that the Roman Church primarily uses Latin, the older form of Western European Romance Languages, and the Russian Orthodox Church uses Slavonic, an older form of Russian / Ukrainian, the Armenian Church uses it's own liturgical language, "Classical Armenian," a more archaic form of Armenian.

I've posted some videos on it below. What are your thoughts?

« Last Edit: September 22, 2019, 03:37:00 PM by TheReturnofLive »
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Offline aquinas138

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Re: Thoughts on the Armenian Rite?
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2019, 01:04:33 AM »
The classical form of Armenian is called grabar ("literary"); I took a semester in grad school, but wasn't able to make time for more. It's fascinating from the standpoint of Indo-European linguistics. It preserves eight nominal cases and has no gender marking in the relative pronoun. While the grammar is not bad if you've studied IE languages with extensive case systems like Latin, Greek, or Russian, it was a bit of a bear to learn vocabulary because there is virtually no vocabulary overlap between English and Armenian, so there is very little to grab on to.

I admire the Armenians greatly in holding on to Christianity through two millennia of near-relentless persecution. There used to be an Armenian breviary online, but I cannot locate the link anymore. It is very interesting, and very fixed from day-to-day, much like most of the Eastern rites.
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