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The Matenadaran is one of the oldest and richest book-depositories in the world. Its collection of about 17000 manuscripts includes almost all the areas of ancient and medieval armenian culture and sciences - history,
geography, grammar, philosophy, law, medicine, mathematics-cosmography, theory of calendar, alchemy-chemistry, translations, literature, chronology, art history, miniature, music and theatre, as well as manuscripts in Arabic, Persian, Greek, Syrian, Latin, Ethiopian, Indian, Japanese and others. In this center of cultural heritage many originals, lost in their mother languages and known only of their Armenian translations, have been saved from loss.