The Matenadaran holds one of the world’s richest depositories of manuscripts and documents. The Matenadaran houses more than 18 000 manuscripts and about 300 000 archival documents.

Ancient manuscripts are explored at the Matenadaran, or as the building is also called, in the Mesrop Mastots Institute of Ancient Manuscripts. The main building of Matenadaran was built in 1957, by architect Mark Grigoryan to collect and research manuscripts of the Armenian Church.

A monumental flight of steps leads to the statues of Mesrop Mashtots, the inventor of the Armenian alphabet and of his pupil Koryun, who is bending his knee before his teacher. The statues were created by Ghukas Chubaryan.

Carved above the entrance into the Matenadaran, you see the first words written in Armenian - a fragment of a sentence taken from the Bible. “To know wisdom and gain instruction; to discern the words of understanding...’’ (Proverbs 1:2).