The city, which once competed in splendor with Cairo and Constantinople, is now abandoned
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But its beauty was also, at least partly, the cause of its destruction: it was sacked by the Mongols in 1236, and then stricken by an earthquake in the early 14th century. Thus, the city, which had a population of around 200,000 citizens during its glorious days, eventually was reduced to a town, which was completely abandoned later on. Today, the ruins of Ani — located in modern Turkey, in territory Armenians still consider their ancestral homeland — are constantly visited by tourists, although the World Heritage Fund and UNESCO have both indicated they are in critical condition. Reconstruction work has just recently begun, according to local authorities.
For a glimpse of Ani’s beauty, visit the gallery below.
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