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Nerses III the Builder

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Nerses III the Builder (Armenian: Ներսես Գ Շինող) was the Catholicos of the Armenian Apostolic Church between 641 and 661. He was originally from the village of Ishkhan in Tayk. He ruled at a troubled time during which Armenia had to choose between their neighbors Byzantines and Persians along with their new conquerors the Arabs. Nerses maintained friendly relations with the Byzantines and in 648 called the Council of Dvin which accepted the Council of Chalcedon, bringing it back into communion with the Orthodox Church, though based on the Monothelite compromise. The Byzantine Emperor Constans II had entered Armenia the previous year and claimed Armenia for himself, staying at Nerses's residence at Dvin for a time.

Catholicos Nerses III received the title of the Builder due to the grand construction works he undertook during his reign. The most important ones were the construction of a chapel over the pit of imprisonment of St. Gregory the Illuminator at Khor Virap (which was replaced a thousand years later by the current church) and the magnificent cathedral of Zvartnots. One tradition says he might have been buried on the northern side of the church.

Preceded by
Ezra of Armenia
Catholicoi of the Holy See of St. Echmiadzin and All Armenians
Succeeded by
Anastasius of Armenia
eo:Nerses la 3-a la Konstruinto

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