Almost anyone who comes to Armenia visits Garni, and they think it is the 76 AD temple and Roman style baths. Many learn when they visit that the cyclopic stone walls that surround the royal summer residence and temple are were in fact first laid in the 3rd millennium BC by ancestral Armenians who developed the region into one of the greatest metallurgical and trading powers in Mesopotamia and Asia Minor.
The temple itself was built on top of an Urartian temple, and has the same floor dimensions as the temple of Sushi in Erebuni (5.05 X 7.98 meters). A common feature of sacred structures from oldest times through the Christian era is to orient the structures to the East, that is, to the rising sun.
The temple of Garni itself was dedicated to the sun goddess Mythra. Armenians shared Zoroastrian entities with Persia (and by the time of Garni Temple, with the Eastern Roman empire, which had adopted Mythra as a patron goddess), and worshipped fire as an ultimate gift from the gods, an entity in itself.
Garni was designed according to the sacred geometry of the day: It perfectly follows the Pythagorean and Platonic theories of sacred geometry in its design, a design for civilization carved form the wilderness.
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