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Khatchkar - Armenian cross hand painted ceramic tile

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Armenian cross, khatchkarThe Armenian cross

The Khatchkar (stone cross in Armenian) is an ancient stone carving art established in Armenia around the 9th century A.D. The art consists of carving the image of a cross in stone. The intricacy of the cross design ranges from the very simple, to the extremely intricate, with knotted intertwining designs, birds, vine trees, images of saints, scripture, and wings under the cross. The stone cross itself is used for commemorating important events in Armenian history. It also has aesthetic architectural uses.

The hand painted tile above is 6 inches in size. The writing in Armenian says, "Sourp khatchn yeghitsi mez abaven", which translates to, "May the Holy Cross protect us." This tile is available with cork backing and a hanger for hanging on a wall, or without any backing for installing in a wall, or backsplash.

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For more information on the art and history of khatchkars, visit these resources: