The project which took place between September 2017 – December 2019 aims to safeguard Syriac cultural heritage in the Mardin region through (i) the documentation and dissemination of the information on the cultural practices and (ii) assessing Syriac architectural heritage in the region, together with the risks they are exposed to. This project demonstrates how intangible heritage is integral to tangible heritage, and shows that its preservation requires a strategy that is developed/accepted by its inheritants.
Documenting the Architectural Heritage:
A team of international experts oversaw a road map for developing a strategy for the conservation of the Syriac heritage in the Mardin region. The sites were assessed according to data such as their location, architectural features, overall condition, and vulnerability to outdoor conditions, while, at the same time, an exact description of the actions that need to be taken for their conservation was developed. The information resulted in specific suggestions for each site regarding their protection and presentation. Architectural heritage reports were published in Turkish and in English
Through photogrammetry, 3D models of the monuments at most risk in the region were prepared in addition to 360° panoramic views for the selected monuments. Since a great part of the Syriac community no longer live in the location where the architectural heritage exists, we believe that digital documentation of the monuments is significant for their promotion and accessibility.
The region, that is called Turabdin in Syriac tradition, has housed a society with a multilingual, multiethnic, multicultural, and multi-religious character. The communities of this society included Muslims, Christians, and Ezidis; and the Turkish, Arabic, Kurdish, and Syriac languages have been contemporarily spoken throughout history. In order to sustain this diverse character, we aimed to document and promote the Syriac community’s cultural practices (including their language), extending the networks of the Syriac activists, NGOs, and initiatives, supporting and promoting their activities.
3 booklets with various themes on Syriac intangible heritage were prepared. They provide detailed information about Syriac intangible heritage, the risks threatening this heritage, and recommendations for their safeguarding. As the young generations’ interest in protection of cultural heritage is crucial for the sustainability of the entire preservation efforts, a childrens’ book in Turkish and Syriac was also prepared.
You can access the architectural risk analysis publication, three booklets on intangible heritage and the childrens’ book in the Publications section of our website.
For detailed information, 360-degree photos and 3D models, visit: www.intangiblesyriac.org
Funder: US Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation
Project Coordinator: Başak Emir
Local Project Coordinator Eliyo Eliyo