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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



one of the main nakhararq (feudal) clans of early medieval Armenia.

The Mamikonian family owned extensive territory in Taikh and Taron. From the fourth century A.D. they were the hereditary sparapets, or military commanders in chief, of Armenia. Their family produced a number of outstanding generals who headed the struggle of the Armenian people for independence. After the loss of Armenia’s political independence in the 420’s, the Mamikonian family was oriented toward Byzantium, where several representatives of the clan occupied major military and administrative posts.

Vardan Mamikonian was an outstanding Armenian general, who became sparapet of Armenia in 432. When summoned to the city of Ctesiphon (near modern Bagdad), he converted to Zoroastrianism, the dominant religion in Iran; but after his return to Armenia in 450-451, he headed a rebellion against Iranian rule. Vardan won a number of victories over the Iranian Army and was elected head of government by the insurgents. He perished in the Battle of Avarair of 451. As a result of the movement led by Vardan Mamikonian, domestic self-rule was largely restored in Armenia. The Mamikonian clan ceased to play a notable role in the political life of Armenia after the defeat of a rebellion against Arab rule in 774-775.


Eremian, S. T. “Narodno-osvoboditel’naia voina armian protiv persov v 450-451 gg.” Vestnik drevnei istorii, 1951, no. 4.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Panossian A, Hovhannisyan A, Mamikonian G, Abrahamian H, Hambardzumyan E, Gabrielian E, Goukasova G, Wikman G, Wagner H (2000) Pharmacokinetic and oral bioavailability of andrographolide from Andrographis paniculata fixed combination Kan Jang in rats and human.
His sources were mostly oral: the secular material, Garsoian argues, derived from ~a series of loosely connected tales focused on a particular theme or individual' which she groups into opposing aristocratic (Mamikonian) and royal Gestes; while much of the ecclesiastical and hagiographical material probably originated in written form, this too she envisages passing through an oral, or at any rate a memorized, stage in its transmission to the text.
He reveals himself to be an ardent supporter of the Mamikonian house and of the hereditary claims of the Gregorid family to the Katholikate.