Location, structure and history: The cemetery is situated in the East end of the village of Noratus on a large low lying hill. It is accessible from the village road and is situated 1.6km from the Gavar-Martuni highway.
This well known cemetery consists of two parts: old and new that have actually already been mixed. The old cemetery started from the Western end of the hill where burials were carried out to a systematic plan from the North to the South. There are two Chapels in this part of the cemetery made of processed stone; one is dated 1211 (Southern Chapel), the other 1714 (Northern Chapel). The latter was totally reconstructed in 1977.
On the upper part of the Northern wall of the Southern Chapel there is a 10 line record reading: “to the reign of…son of Mkhitar, who has been the leader of famous Geghis Noratvats (probably the name of the location.M.A) and I built this chapel by the will of God in memory of my soul, the soul of Zuza and my father Mkhitar, and the rest of the diseased in my family. Remember us in your prayers”. Unfortunately the stones comprising the first and the second lines of the record are lost, but the petroglyph is preserved on a khachkar standing on three stones of a pedestal adjacent to the Northern wall of the Chapel tells us about the period of this petroglyph: “1211. in the time of our kings Zakareh and Ivaneh, IMkhitar Petchurants, son of Davit, by blessing of God and order of King Ivaneh have started the construction of this church of Noratus for the salvation of my souls. Those coming to the church remember the kingdom and the liberation of tajiks (Turks)…” Actually, this is a record left by the father of the village Head-Mkhitar, named in the previous petroglyph that shows that the Chapel should have been constructed in the same period. The oldest khachkar standing here is dated from 1225 A.D. (immediately next to the Chapels), however, there are columns with round and square nests and separate parts of heads of this type of
khachkars standing and fallen down in the cemetery that may be dated from the 9th c. A.D. and even earlier.

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