Yerevan - Capital of
capital Yerevan is often likened to an ancient Roman theatre. And indeed
the central part of the city, at the very beginning of the Ararat valley,
is very like the stage of a theatre. This low part of the city stands at
an altitude of 900 m above sea level. If the centre of the city is the
stage of the theatre then, the four elevations - Arabkir, Kanaker, Nork
plateaus and Kondsk Ridgier its amphitheatre and loges. From Victory Park,
on the Kanaker plateau in the lower "tier" of the amphitheatre, guests
of the Armenian capital can enjoy a thrilling view of the city’s panorama,
crowned in the south by the twin peaks of Mt. Ararat. The first two of
the above mentioned elevations, which have become part of the city in the
last 25-30 years, stand at an altitude of 1,200-1,350 m above sea level.
A rather deep canyon (100-150 m)
intersects the territory of the city, along the bottom of which flows the
Razdan river, which has its source in Lake Sevan and flows into the Araks
River. The gorge formed by this river with its picturesque slopes has been
transformed into a recreation zone. Another small river, the Gedar, which
used to cause much trouble in the past, cuts through the Avansk plateau.
Now encased in concrete and stone, the Gedar is an attractive feature of
Yerevan's urban landscape.
The geographical location of the
Armenian capital is the determining factor in its climate. The sky above
Yerevan is a cloudless blue almost the year round, with the sun shining
290-300 days a year.
Yerevan is one of the "driest" cities
in the region. Most of the rain that the city gets falls in the spring
months of April and May.
The natural vegetation of Yerevan
is rather sparse. Nevertheless the Armenian capital is often called a garden
city. Thanks to the extensive work carried out in planting trees and shrubs
green is now one of the leading colours in the city's urban array. Yerevan
is particularly attractive in the spring when almond, maple, apricot, cherry,
pear, and apple trees are in blossom and the birdcherry trees put out their'
green leaves. It is equally attractive when the trees are in golden and
russet hues of autumn.
history of the City
son of Menua, built this splendid fortress in honour of the great God Khalda
and named it Erebuni, to the glory of the country of Biaina - These words,
inscribed on a stone tablet, tell the story of the founding of Yerevan,
which in 1968 celebrated its 2750th anniversary. Evidently, Yerevan owes
its present name to this ancient fortress, the ruins of which still stand
in the southeastern part of the city. As yet historians have no exact data
concerning the name of the city. There are a number of scientific hypotheses
and even more legends on this subject.
The history of cities is closely
bound up with the history of their respective people. This holds true of
Yerevan. In the course of its centuries-old existence Yerevan witnessed
periods of flourishing and decline but life in the city never died out.
Throughout the course of Armenian history the Ararat valley was always
the centre of the formation and development of the nation. For this reason,
though Yerevan was not the capital of ancient or medieval Armenia, it nevertheless
played an important role in the political and economic life of the country
and was a point of major military significance.
Fully sharing in the destiny of the
country, Yerevan was the apple of discord between ancient Rome and the
Parthians, the Byzantines and the Persians, the Arabs and the Mongolians,
and once again, between the Persians and the Turks. Devastation and destruction,
the deaths of tens of thousands of people, and the driving of those who
survived into slavery accompanied all these incursions.
With the annexation of Eastern Armenia
by Christian Russia in 1828 after the Russian-Persian war, the situation
changed for the better. In the years following - Yerevan remained a remote
provincial town of the Russian Empire, with narrow, crooked streets, adobe
huts, and only here and there grew two or three storey buildings.
In 1915 the Armenian people suffered
a terrible tragedy. Whilst Europe's attention was fully engaged by the
First World War, a horrendous program for the destruction of the local
population was put into effect in Western (Turkish) Armenia and the same
fate awaited Eastern Armenia. Victory in the battle of Sardarapat, near
Yerevan, in 1918 saved the last plot of Armenian land from destruction.
defeat of the Ottoman Turks in World War I and the disintegration of the
Russian Empire gave the Armenians a chance to declare their independence.
On May 28, 1918, the independent Republic of Armenia was established, after
the Armenians forced the Turkish troops to withdraw in the battles of Sardarapat,
Karakilisse and Bashabaran. Overwhelming difficulties confronted the infant
republic, but amid these conditions the Armenians devoted all their energies
to the pressing task of reconstructing their country. But due to pressure
exerted simultaneously by the Turks and Communists, the republic collapsed
in 1920. Finally, the Soviet Red Army moved into the territory (Eastern
Armenia) and on November 29, 1920 declared it a Soviet republic.