Customs and Traditions of Armenia
Armenia is a country where the majority of the population professes Christianity, which in a sense brings it closer to the representatives of Russia. However, one should not forget that this is a Transcaucasian state with its indestructible traditions and customs, which the Armenians sacredly keep, passing from generation to generation.
Most Armenians are characterized by friendliness and hospitality, tact and courtesy. At the same time, they can be very emotional, like many representatives of the Caucasian peoples, so do not be surprised by the active gestures or the volume of the conversation. Armenians are well aware of their own history and culture, they love and appreciate their native land, but they are also perfectly able to get along with representatives of other nations. Relations in the family, respect for elders are also very strong here.
Traditionally, in the Armenian family, the head of the house is a man, but the older woman also has broad rights, especially in matters of home and life. Gradually, the rights of women in Armenia are expanding, more and more often young people do not want to live according to patriarchal customs.
Among the national characteristics of Armenians, among other things, diligence, ability and desire to work are noted. Armenia nurtures many masters in arts and crafts. And endurance and perseverance allowed the inhabitants of Armenia to preserve the integrity of their country and nation.
As of 2014, the population of Armenia in total was approximately 3.17 million people. It is noted that the population has been decreasing in recent years due to emigrants, mostly to Russia. Armenia is practically a mono-ethnic country, about 97% of its population is represented by Armenians. Among ethnic minorities, the most numerous are Yezidis (1.2%), Russians (about 0.4%), Assyrians (0.09%), Kurds (0.07%), as well as Ukrainians, Jews, etc.
According to Countryaah, a significant outflow of the population of Armenia was the result of serious Armenian-Azerbaijani conflicts in the early 90s of the XX century, after which almost all Azerbaijanis left the country.
Armenia has a rather high level of urbanization, about 63% of the population lives in cities, although in recent years this number has begun to decline. The population density is 101.4 people/km², and the settlement is often uneven across the country. The most densely populated area is Yerevan with its surroundings.
The official state language of Armenia is Armenian, or rather its Eastern Armenian version. However, besides it, the Russian language is very widespread; about 70% of the country’s population knows it, with the exception of residents of remote mountainous regions. In Yerevan, Russian is spoken at a good level, in other areas, language proficiency may be worse. Among other things, magazines are published in Russian, there are Russian television channels and radio stations. Russian is taught in schools.
Yezidi is also spoken in the country and, of course, international English.
The vast majority (94% of the population) of the Armenians profess Christianity and are monophysites of the Armenian Apostolic Church, which is headed by the Patriarch-Catholicos. There is also a small Catholic community of Armenians. There are also representatives of Orthodox Christianity in Armenia (mostly Russians, Greeks and Ukrainians). Muslims also live here, more often they are Kurds, Persians and Azerbaijanis; a mosque works for them in Yerevan. Check agooddir for recent history of Armenia.
Special mention should be made of the Yezidi community, who profess their own special religion – Yezidism. Relatively recently, the Yezidi temple “Ziarat” began to work for representatives of this denomination in the Armavir region, the only one that exists outside Iraqi Kurdistan, the homeland of the Yezidis.
Although the Armenians as a whole are quite a peaceful people, correctly referring to the guests of their country, it is worth remembering a few nuances in communicating with representatives of this people.
It is undesirable to try to enter into political disputes with the Armenians, especially if it concerns relations with Georgia, Turkey or Azerbaijan. These are sore topics, on which opinions may not converge.
Armenians love to adorn themselves, you can often find an abundance of bright and expensive jewelry, both for women and men. However, earrings in the ears of a man can be misunderstood.
You should not throw too long or ambiguous glances at local girls, even if they look very bright and attractive.
When visiting an Armenian, it is worth trying and praising most of the dishes and drinks offered, this is the courtesy rule of a good guest.
In large cities, men are not supposed to walk down the street in shorts and a T-shirt, this is clothing for the resort. For a business meeting, a suit is required, preferably dark. Particular attention is paid to fashionable and high-quality shoes.
National Armenian holidays
December 31 – January 6 – Christmas holidays and New Year.
January 6 – Christmas and Epiphany.
April 7 – Motherhood and Beauty Day.
April 24 is the Day of Remembrance of the Victims of the Armenian Genocide.
May 9 – Victory and Peace Day.
May 28 – First Republic Day.
July 5 – Constitution Day.
September 21 – Independence Day.
December 7 – Day of Remembrance for the Victims of the 1988 Earthquake