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Tnjri (Platan Tree)

Through centuries of war and peace, countless regimes, and an uncertain future,  in the small Armenian republic of Nagorno-Karabakh still remains unchanged - 2000 year old tree, known as Tnjri.    

Аt  37th km north from Stepanakert, not far from the north-south highway near the village of Skhtorashen a huge plane tree goes high into the air. Estimated at over 2,035 (as of 2015) years old the tree has grown massive, with a circumference reaching almost 27 meters and a height of over 54 meters and with leaves about 0,5 meters. The hollow trunk is reportedly big enough 44 sq.m., for more than 100 people to fit inside.  The area covered by the foliage of the tree is 1400 sq.m. Tnjri (which in Karabakh dialect means ‘plane tree’), is one of the largest plane-trees in the world.


According to Armenian lore the tree was said to have been visited by many Armenian greats, including the inventor of the Armenian alphabet, Mesrop Mashtots, in the 5th century; Armenia's first historian, Movses Khorenatsi also in the 5th century; and the musician and poet Sayat-Nova in the 18th century.

The size and age of the tree has also garnered the plant a spiritual significance among the local people, many of whom see the tree as sacred.

There is even a legend that states that anyone who burns it down will die within seven days. This likely arose as a manner of protecting the ancient arbor since it has survived multiple close calls with arsonists trying to set it ablaze over the years. At one point the problem was so bad a full time guard had to be posted under the tree.



Despite the many attempts at its life, Tnjri has survived through long eras. When Karabakh was under Soviet control, Tnjri was said to be the tallest tree in USSR.

However through it all Tnjri has remained an important shrine to the local people and a popular site for visitors looking a see a physical symbol of Armenia's history. In the suburbs of the Platan numerous historical monuments have remained. The most remarkable of them is the early medieval basilica and the ruins of the ancient cemetery with numerous magnificent khachkars (cross-stones).

Since 2008  the surroundings of the tree, works on improvement of the territory have been carried on and several picnic areas were built there for providing vaious service.

17:49 August 03, 2015