AMARAS - Monastery in Nagorno KarabakhArmenian Apostolic Church monasteryNagorno Rarabakh Republic

Sacred Grapes of Amaras

According to a legend told in Artsakh and other eastern lands of historical Armenia, soil around the Amaras Monastery has special healing powers because it was soaked in the holy blood of St. Grigoris, who is buried in the vault of Amaras’ main church that bears his name. The spiritual leader of Artsakh and St. Gregory the Enlightener’s grandson, Bishop Grigoris martyred in the 4th century, when preaching the Holy Gospel in the land of the Mazkuts (modern-day Russia’s Republic of Dagestan in Russia’s Northern Caucasus). Representative of these special powers is the variety of black grapes that is native to Nagorno Karabakh and is known as Hindeghna (or Hindogny; Armenian: Հինդեղնը). The name of the grapes is a compound Armenian word translated as “old medicine” — hin (հին) means “old” and degh (դեղ) means “medicine.”