Anak SOUREN-PAHLAV the Parthian
Grigor SOUREN-PAHLAV "the Illuminator", Kat'oghikos of Armenia
(-Abt 331)
Vrt'anēs SOUREN-PAHLAV, Kat'oghikos of Armenia


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Vrt'anēs SOUREN-PAHLAV, Kat'oghikos of Armenia

  • Married:
  • Died: 341

  Research Notes:

[In] the 54th year of Trdat he appointed Vrt'anēs, the elder son of Grigor, as catholicos of Great Armenia, who served the throne of the patriarchate 15 years.

Then Trdat, king of Armenia, ... wanted to inculcate Christian practices in every Armenian. But our ill-natured people, proud and hard-hearted, resisted the wishes of the king. Having been deprived of his earthly crown, he pursued the heavenly crown. He soon reached the location of the holy hermit of Christ which is called the cave of Manē. Settling there, he became a mountain-dweller. The nobles sent after him and summoned him; they promised to be holy in accordance with his wishes and to reserve the kingship for him. But when the saint refused, they gave him a drink of death, like the hemlock of Socrates... [He] had reigned 56 years.

When the news of the death of Trdat broke, the blessed patriarch Vrt'anēs was in the district of Taron, in the church of Aštišat, in the vigil of the feast of Easter. And the inhabitants of the mountain had been gathered at the instigation of the queen of queens; because of his continual reproaching, she wanted to kill him. And the patriarch came out and saw that everyone was bound by invisible chains, and having asked the reasons he released them. And he himself crossed over in the district of Ekełiac.

At the same report of the death of Trdat, through the scheming of Sanatruk, who was prince of the country from the line of Aršakunik', the barbarians killed Grigoris, the elder son of Vrt'anēs, who was bishop of the regions of Albania, trampled by horses on the Vatnean plain near to the Caspian sea. The deacons of the same lifted him up and brought him to Pok'r Siwnik' and [they buried] him in the town of Amaras.

Now when Sanatruk was king, he took possession of the city of P'aytakaran and planned to rule the whole of Armenia. When the great prince Bakur realized this, who was bdeašx of Ałjnik', he conceived the same for himself and gave assistance to Ormizd, king of the Persians. The other nobles of Armenia assembled around the great Vrt'anēs and dispatched two of the honourable princes to the emperor Constantius, son of Constantine, [asking] that she should send a force in assistance and make as king of Armenia Xosrov, son of Trdat. On hearing this, he dispatched Antiochus with a huge force. And he came and made Xosrov king....

[The said] king ... died having reigned for 9 years.

And in the seventeenth year of his autocracy, Augustus Constantius made king Tiran, son of Xosrov, and sent him to Armenia.

Now after accomplishing 15 years in the office of bishop, the great Vrt'anēs departed this world in the third year of Tiran. And after him they sent the son of Vrt'anēs, Yusik, to the city of Cappadocia, for consecration as patriarch of Armenia, who occupied the patriarchal throne for 6 years. 1

  Marriage Information:

Vrt'anēs married . . . . . . .  


1 The Universal History of Step'anos Taronec'i: Introduction, Translation, and Commentary, Tim Greenwood, 2017, pp. 136-8.

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