Talin's Katoghike Church sits central to the town cemetery and dominates the surrounding landscape. It is assumed to have been constructed during the late 7th century based on the architectural style. The building is currently in ruin, where the dome and a significant portion of the western wing have since collapsed. There is a dodecagonal drum that is centrally positioned over the structure. Two prayer rooms or "studies" are positioned adjacent to and at either side of the apse. Each room contains a secret passage entrance at the second story level, facing the direction of the apse. The small passage allegedly leads to small rooms above.
Modern civilization began right here in the Tigris-Euphrates river valley. Also known as the Fertile Crescent or Mesopotamia, this is the place where, six thousand years ago, agriculture, writing and mathematics were brought into widespread use.The term "Middle East" comes from the British navy, which used it to describe the countries on the trade route from Europe to India and China. Everything from Afghanistan to Morocco may possibly be classified as "middle eastern", depending on whom you ask -- and when.Only a partial list of past Empires in the middle eastern territory includes Sumeria, Babylonia, Persia, the Ottoman Empire and the Roman Empire!When northern Europe was still lurking about in slimy cold stone castles playing chess, the Middle East was enjoying the flowers of poetry, luxurious craftsmanship, music and literature. In fact, the Renaissance in Europe was partly inspired by stories brought back from the middle east by travelers along the trade route.Strategic location, religious history and the world's largest supply of crude oil have kept the Middle East at the center of world activity for centuries. The saga continues.Text by Steve Smith.