stability and set about repairing the main cathedral, adding a bell tower in i654. He profited from a visit to the Persian court to recover the relic of St Gregory the Illuminator with which bishops are consecrated. Of even greater moment was his journey to Jerusalem in 1651 in the course of which he eased strains between the church's other main sees. He convoked a synod in the Holy City to settle various jurisdictional issues, which had arisen between the Armenian patriarchate of Jerusalem and the catholicate of Sis. He then continued his journey to the Ottoman capital, where he resolved disputes within the Armenian patriarchate of Constantinople.32

These were in part associated with the mercurial career of the hierarch Eliazar Aynt'apc'i, who in short order became patriarch of Jerusalem (1649), then of Constantinople (1651), only to resign the following year and return to Jerusalem, where he was imprisoned, as he sought to protect the properties and privileges of the Armenian community from the Greek patriarchate.33 Although the see of Jerusalem was subordinate to Constantinople at this time, he attempted to make it the centre of a pan-Ottoman jurisdiction independent of the authority of Ejmiacin. With this in mind he established the Ejmiacin chapel in the St James's monastery in Jerusalem and had himself consecrated catholicos of West Armenia in 1664 by the catholicos of Sis.34 This opened a schism, which persisted all through the reign of Catholicos Yakob of Ejmiacin and only came to an end in 1681, when Eliazar was elected as the latter's successor. After his installation as catholicos he set about healing the even older dispute with the catholicate of Alt'amar, which still controlled a few dioceses around the shores of Lake Van.


A permanent Armenian community existed in Moscow from the late fifteenth century, but without its own church. The Armenians in Russia had to wait until i639 before they received permission from the tsar to establish a church. This was for their community at Astrakhan, a key point on the trade route along the

32 For the synodal acts, see Abel Mxit'areanc', Patmut'iwn zdovoc' hayastaneayc' ekelec'woy [History of the synods of the Armenian church] (Valarsapat: Mother See Press, 1874), i43-8.

33 S. P. Cowe,'Pilgrimage to Jerusalem by the eastern churches', in Wahlfahrt kennt keine Grenzen, ed. L. Kriss-Rettenbeck and G. Mohler (Munich: Bayerisches Nationalmuseum, i984), 3i6-30.

34 On this chapel, see Bezalel Narkiss, Armenian art treasures ofJerusalem (Jerusalem: Massada Press, 1979), 126-8, and onits tiles,J. Carswell and C.J. F. Dowsett, Kutahyatilesandpottery from the Armenian cathedral of St James, Jerusalem (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1972), 6-23.

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