Jambr (Archival Chamber)

Introduction and Annotated Translation by George A. Bournoutian

George A. Bournoutian, Kat`oghikos Simeon of Erevan

Series: Armenian Studies Series. 14
Availability: In stock
Published: 2009
Page #: xiv + 496
Size: 6 x 9
ISBN: 1-56859-170-5, ISBN 13: 978-1-56859-170-4
plates, appendix, bibliography, glossary, index, notes

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Quick Overview

Siméon of Erevan, was the Kat`oghikos, that is, the Supreme Patriarch, of the Armenian Church, from 1763 to 1780. He reorganized the Holy See of Ejmiatsin, restored its spiritual authority, and increased its wealth and political influence. In 1771, Siméon not only established the first printing press at Ejmiatsin, the first ever in Armenia, but built a paper mill as well. In addition, he also wrote a number of religious and historical works, and prepared a Church calendar. After assuming the leadership of the Church, Siméon gathered all the documents and manuscripts which were at the archives of the Holy See at Ejmiatsin, and after examining them wrote Jambr, Siméon’s term for “archival chamber.” Jambr begins with the history and apostolic origins of the Armenian Church and the construction of the Holy See of Ejmiatsin. It describes the move of the Holy See from its original site to other locations, because of invasions and other uncertainties, and its final return from Cilicia to Ejmiatsin in 1441. After detailing the lives of several of his predecessors, Siméon, citing the numerous deeds for land and other immovable properties, explains the jurisdiction of Ejmiatsin and lists the number of mills, hulling-mills, vineyards, houses, arable fields, pastures, streams, irrigation canals, and other properties belonging to the Holy See. He follows this with the summaries of royal and other official decrees from the Persian Shahs, Ottoman Sultans, and their governors. The last chapter lists the Armenian monasteries in the Erevan region with their jurisdiction and properties. Jambr is thus one of the most important primary sources on the history of the Armenian Church, as well as the history of Armenia under Muslim rule.


George A. Bournoutian

George A. Bournoutian is Professor of East European and Middle Eastern Studies at Iona College, New York. He has taught Iranian history at UCLA and Armenian History at Columbia University, New York University, University of Connecticut, Tufts University, Rutgers University, Ramapo College, and Glendale Community College. He is the author of 30 books, including The Khanate of Erevan Under Qajar Rule and From Tabriz to St. Petersburg: Iran’s Mission of Apology to Russia in 1829. His translations of primary sources such as The Chronicle of Abraham of Crete; Abraham of Erevan’s History of the Wars: 1721-1738 and documents such as Armenians and Russia, A Documentary Record, 1626-1796, Russia and the Armenians of Transcaucasia, A Documentary Record, 1797-1889, and A History of Qarabagh have received laudatory reviews in TLS, BSOAS and other important publications. Professor Bournoutian is a member of the Society for Iranian Studies and a member of the Society for Armenian Studies. He is also a frequent contributor to encyclopedias, various scholarly journals, and collections. His work has been cited in major publications and he is considered a world authority on the history of the South Caucasus in the Modem Period (1400-1900). Professor Bournoutian was born in Isfahan and grew up in Iran. He received his High school diploma from the well-known Andisheh (Don Bosco) institution in Tehran. His B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. are from UCLA. He is fluent in Armenian, Persian, Russian, and Polish and has a reading command of French. His A Concise History of the Armenian People is considered the best source in English and has been translated into Spanish, Turkish, Arabic, Armenian, Russian and Japanese.

Kat`oghikos Simeon of Erevan

Abbreviated Titles.
Transliteration, Dates, and Place Names.
Translator’s Introduction.
Plate 1. Folio (Chapter 20) of the Original Manuscript of Jambr.
Plate 2. Title Page of the First Edition of Jambr (1873)
Plate 3. Watermarks of the Paper Produced at Ejmiatsin
Author’s Title
Author’s Preface

Chapter 1: In Which the Condition of the Holy See of Ejmiatsin
From Its Foundation to its Decline and Restoration Is Detailed. After Which a Brief Account of the [Relic] of the Right Hand of [St. Gregory] Our Illuminator [Is Given]

Chapter 2: In Which Are Listed the Apostles, Teachers and Katoghikoi of Our Nation Who Came After Christ, Our Lord and Their Principle Acts.

Chapter 3: A List of the Restorers and Benefactors of the Holy See of Ejmiatsin; a List of the Katoghikoi Who Occupied the Throne at the Holy See From Kirakos to Movs?s of Siwnik

Chapter 4: The Succession of the Katoghikoi of the Holy See From Movses to Our Time and a Brief Account of Their Benevolent Deeds.

Chapter 5: In Which Are Listed the Provinces of the Nuiraks of the Holy See, From Whence the Holy See Receives Dues Triennially Through the Nuiraks: Expenses for the Nuiraks, Wills, Bequests, as Well as Memorials.

Chapter 6: In Which Are Listed the Districts That Are Both Nuirak and Diocesan, From Which, in Addition to Triennial Nuirak Dues, the Holy See Also Receives Diocesan Income Through those Nuiraks Who Have Been Appointed as the Prelates.

Chapter 7: In Which Are Listed the Provinces From Whence the Holy See, in Addition to Receiving Triennial Nuirak Dues, Also Receives Livestock, Oil, Cheese, and Other Foodstuffs Once [a Year], as Well as Other Gifts.

Chapter 8: In Which Relation of the [Various] Rulers With the Holy See and Its Kat?oghikoi, as Well as With the Other Kat?oghikoi, Patriarchs, and Prelates and Their Circumstances Are Described.

Chapter 9: In Which Are Explained the Rituals Performed Following the Death of a Kat`oghikos; as Well as the Election of a Successor and His Consecration; on the Correspondence Sent by the Kat`oghikos After His Consecration; Where He
Places His Seal [in Letters and Documents] and Where Others Who Write to Him Place Their Seals; What Respect the Kat`oghikos Accords and to Whom; and Other Related Matters.

Chapter 10: In Which the History of the Katoghikosate of Aghuank` [Caucasian Albania] Is Set Forth; How It Sometimes Rebelled Against the Kat?oghikoi of Ejmiatsin, What Arguments and Squabbles It Caused, Why and When, and Other Similar Matters. The Georgians and Information About Them Are Discussed Here as Well.

Chapter 11: On the Kat`oghikosate of Aght?amar and Its Circumstances.

Chapter 12: On Cilicia and the Kat`oghikosate of Sis and Their Circumstances.

Chapter 13: In Which the Villages That Paid Rent [Mulk] to the Holy See Are Listed Separately; Together with [ a List of] the Vineyards and Arable Fields From Which the Holy See Receives Rent, That is, One-Tenth of the Produce; indicating Their Names, When, How, and by Whom They Were Acquired.

Chapter 14: On Mu`af, That Is, the Exemption Status of the Holy See [From Taxes] and How It Came About.

Chapter 15: In Which the Arable Fields and Pasture Lands for the Flocks of the Holy See Are Listed Separately and By Name; Describing When and How They Were Acquired and Their Location.

Chapter 16: In Which the Names of the Vineyards, Orchards, Areas Suitable for Growing Grapes, and the Like, Which Belong to the Holy See Are Enumerated; Their Location and How They Were Acquired.

Chapter 17: In Which the Location of the Holy See’s Mills, Threshing-Mills and Oil-Presses Are Listed; How and When They Were Acquired.

Chapter 18: In Which the Waters, Canals, and Reservoirs Belonging to the Holy See Are Listed, Their Numbers, Location, When and by Whom They Were Acquired, and So Forth.

Chapter 19: In Which Are Listed the Houses, Shops, Bondservants,and Similar Properties of the Holy See, Their Location and How They Were Acquired.

Chapter 20: In Which Are Listed the Raqams of the Persian Kings [Shahs]and All the Usurpers Who Acted as Shahs, and Other Important Documents Issued by Similar Individuals That Are Kept at the Holy See; How, When, and Why They Were Granted.

Chapter 21: In Which Are Listed the Important and Useful Documents of the Persian Khans; the Hujjats [Attestations] and Shart-Namas [Resolutions] of the Divangirs, Shaikhu’l-Islams and Other Such Officials; as Well as How and Why, and Under
What Circumstances They Were Issued.

Chapter 22: In Which Are Listed the Farmans of the Ottoman Kings [Sultans]and Other Important Documents Presented to the Holy See.

Chapter 23: In Which Are Listed the Important Decrees of the Ottoman Pashas, Shaikhu’l-Islams, and Other Officials Presented to the Holy See.

Chapter 24: In Which Are Briefly Listed the Number of Qabalas [Deeds of Purchase] and Waqf-Namas[Certificates of Donation] Written in Armenian and Persian Located at the Holy See.

Chapter 25: In Which Are Revealed the Conditions of the Monasteries in the Erevan Province and Their Diocesan, and Where Their Mulks and Other Acquired Properties Are Separately Named.

Map 1. The Sites of the Armenian Holy See (301-present).
Map 2. Plan of the Holy See Ejmiatsin, ca. 1780 (after Brosset).
Map 3. Religious Centers Mentioned in the Text.
Glossary of Terms.

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