The formation of the Armenian nation in southeastern Europe started in the second millennium BCE and was completed by the end of the ninth century BCE, on creation of Urartu, the first united Armenian kingdom. Armenians were the first nation to declare Christianity a state religion in 301 CE by abandoning paganism. The Armenian Apostolic Church (AAC), one of the six ancient autocephalous Eastern churches, has emerged as the main religious organization in the country.

Christianity has traditionally played an important role in shaping the Armenian identity: Despite the secularization of the society during the Soviet Union, adherence to AAC continued to be one of the symbols of belonging to the Armenian nation.

Throughout history when Armenia was divided between different regional powers (e.g., the Ottoman, Persian, ...

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