The territories of the kingdom of Van, ruined in the first quarter of the 6th century BC, were united with the all-Armenian state of the Yervandids. In 550 BC, Armenia appeared under the rule of the Achemenid Persia and was divided into two satrapies governed by a Yervandid. In 331 BC, the Achemenid Empire collapsed after the victory of Alexander the Great in the battle of Gaugamela. Armenia became independent, split into two kingdoms: Greater Armenia (Mets Hayk) and Lesser Armenia (Pokr Hayk). In 201 BC, Atashes I proclaimed the independence of Greater Armenia and in 189 BC founded the capital city of Artashat.

Tigran the Great was the most outstanding king of the Artaxiads. Continuing the policy of Artashes I, he joined Tsopk and Cappadocia to the Kingdom of Greater Armenia, and united all Armenian lands in one state. In the 80s-70s BC, the domination of Tigran the Great spread from the Caspian Sea to the coasts of the Mediterranean and from the Greater Caucasus to the Red Sea. He bore the title of King of Kings.

The Exhibition presents:

  • a selection of finds from Artashat, Garni, Armavir, Sissian, Vagharshapat and other archeological sites: architectural details, sculptures, specimens of jewellery art, terracotta figurines, statuettes of marble, ceramic vessels and phials of glass
  • borderstones of King Artashes I (189-160 BC) with inscriptions in Aramaic, tombstones and steles with Greek and Latin inscriptions
  • silver and copper coins of Tigran the Great, which were struck in the cities of his vast kingdom (Damascus, Tigranakert, Artashat) and bore the Greek legend “OF TIGRAN KING OF KINGS”.