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DOI: 10.46698/VNC.2022.82.43.002

THE FIRST ALANIAN SAINTS

Tuallagov, Alan A.
Izvestia SOIGSI. 2022. IIS 43 (82).
Abstract:
In Armenia, which claimed the role of one of the most ancient centers of the spread of
Christianity, the church created a corresponding written tradition. Among the most ancient
monuments of hagiography here is the martyrdom, telling about the fate of the Alans who
came to the country. However, both in the literature of various church centers, and in scientific
publications, there are still contradictory assessments of the ethnic origin of the martyrs. This
provision determines the relevance of the chosen topic. Accordingly, the purpose of the proposed
study is to verify the data of written sources that directly determine the range of these estimates.
The scientific novelty of the research lies in the direct appeal, both to the relevant materials
and to the historiography of the problem itself. The research is based on the method of textual
research, inductive and logical analysis, while observing the principle of systematic presentation.
The conducted research allows us to reliably assert that the martyrs are recognized as the Alans
in the fundamental Armenian tradition for the corresponding written monuments. Their
homeland was in the North Caucasus. Chronologically, these events are focused on the wellknown
first campaigns of the Alans in Transcaucasia and fall on the pre-Christian period in the
history of Armenia. Attempts to attribute events to a later time cannot be considered justified.
In the Georgian tradition, martyrs are declared the Georgians, which is a deliberate falsification.
This tradition is also uncritically accepted by the Russian Orthodox Church. At the same time,
some Georgian sources correctly recognize the martyrs as Alans-Ovs. The formal reason for the
constructing the “Georgian version” could be some materials from Armenian sources of nonhagiographic
and later origin, in which there is confusion between the Alans and the Albans due
to the well-known specifics of writing their names, the tendentiousness of some medieval authors
and some erroneous topographical identification.
Keywords: Christianity, hagiography, written sources, Alans, Armenia
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