Aramazd was the chief and creator god in pre-Christian Armenian mythology. The first two letters in his name, "AR", are the Armenian root for sun. The deity and his name were derived from the Zoroastrian deity Ahura Mazda after the Median conquest of Armenia in the 6th century BCE. Before this he was likely worshiped under the name Vanatur, and was renamed when Armenia was under Zoroastrian Parthian influence. Aramazd/Vanatur is perhaps an updated incarnation of the Urartian god Haldi. Aramazd was regarded as a generous god of fertility, rain, and abundance, as well as the father of the other gods, including Anahit, Mihr, and Nane. Like Ahura Mazda, Aramazd was seen as the father of the other gods, rarely with a wife, though sometimes husband to Anahit or Spandaramet. Aramazd was the Parthian form of Ahura Mazda.
Identification with other deities Edit
Aramazd was readily identified with Zeus through interpretatio Graeca, the two often sharing specific titles regarding greatness, bravery, or strength. There was some disagreement in scholarship as to the relationship between Aramazd, Amanor, and Vanatur, but the evidence most strongly indicates that Vanatur ("Lord of the Van") was a title for the chief deity (be it Ḫaldi or Ahura Mazda/Aramazd, though recorded uses are only as a title for Aramazd), and that Amanor was both a common noun referring the new year and a title for the deity whose celebration was held on the new year (Vanatur, whether Ḫaldi or Aramazd).