It is a pleasure to me to accede to the request that I should write a few lines of Preface to this little book on the Religions of Armenia. Our thoughts have been of late constantly turned to the Church of that longsuffering country, and our sympathies go forth in full measure to its brave people, who for so many centuries have remained steadfast to their faith in spite of, ruthless persecutions and massacres, which, alas ! have extended right down to the present time. We can only hope and pray that brighter days may be in store for them, and that they may at last obtain their freedom and the right to live, which has been so cruelly denied to them in the past. There are already various books accessible which give to English readers some accounts of the Armenians and their Church, of which perhaps the most convenient is Archdeacon Dowling's little volume, " The Armenian Church " (S.P.C.K., 1910) ; but the little work which I am now asked to introduce has this advantage : not only that it is brought up to date, but even more, that it enables English readers to see exactly what the Armenians say of themselves ; for it is actually written by an Armenian Vardapet, and is therefore not simply the work of a sympathizer, who, after all, writes from outside, but of one who writes from within, and is able to speak from first-hand knowledge of the things that he has grown up amidst. This gives his work a special value and character of its own, and it is from this point of view that I venture to commend it, and to express the hope that it may do something to familiarize English readers with the history and character of what the writer proudly claims as " the first Christian Church," an expression which he explains by saying that " Armenia was the first country to establish Christianity as a State Religion."
EDGAR C. S. GLOUCESTER.
Feb. 26, 1920.
I ARMENIA: GE OGRAPHICAL AND HISTORICAL SURVEY - 9
II THE ORIGIN AND DEVELOPMENT OF THE ARMENIAN CHURCH - 15
III THE ORGANISATION AND RULE OF THE ARMENIAN CHURCH - 31
IV DOCTRINE, SACRAMENTS, AND LITURGY - 41
V THE PROBLEM OF REFORMATION IN THE ARMENIAN CHURCH - 54
VI THE RÔLE OF THE ARMENIAN CHURCH IN THE NEAR EAST- 61
VII THE EXERTIONS OF THE ARMENIAN CHURCH ON BEHALF OF THE LIBERATION OF ARMENIA - 68