The Legend of Ararad

Mt Ararat is revered in Armenian culture. It stands a symbol of their nation and a protector of the Armenian people. So it’s no surprise that there is a creation myth for it that isn’t ‘plate tectonics.’

Years and years and years ago there was a young man named Ararat. He lived a peaceful life with his village in the Armenian highlands. One day a group of bandit raiders came through and held the village for ransom. Ararat escaped the initial onslaught, mounted a defense, and led the attack to repulse the bandits. He was celebrated as a hero by his friends and family.

Over the years Ararat became more and more famous in the region. He was known as intelligent and fair, as well as an exceptional military commander. His defense against foreign invaders because the stuff of legend. Because of him the Armenian people could live in safety. But time keeps on ticking and eventually Ararat was an old and sick man. So at the age of a hundred he prayed to God.

‘God, I am old and tired. I need rest from this mortal coil. But I can not leave my people. Help me protect them until the end of time.’

God looked down to Ararat and replied. ‘You are only a man, and it is man’s gift and curse to be mortal. I can not make you live forever. What I can do is turn you into a mountain so you can look down upon your people and the Armenian nation can look upon you in wonder and hope.

So Ararat was turned into the mountain. The people were upset they lost their hero and they cried and cried and cried. They cried so much their tears ended up forming the Araks River which makes up the present day border between Armenia and Turkey.

Of course being a legend, there are probably many others describing the formation of Mt Ararat and the Araks River.


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