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‘Abode of the deity’ Tsoy-Pede, Chechnya

Tsoy-Pede “Abode of the deity” is a XIV century necropolis located in the historic area Melhista (which means “land of the sun”) in southern  Chechnya. It’s built on a mountain which is surrounded by two rivers; the necropolis has 50 crypts and several towers (some of which were destroyed).

Tsoy-Pede was built before Chechen people’s conversion to Islam, therefore the settlement is adorned with pagan and solar symbols.

The landmark is situated at the border with Georgia and the area is under strict military control. A special permit is needed to visit Tsoy-Pede (as is the case with many of Russia’s landmarks).

Tsoy-Pede is part of the Argun State History, Architecture and Nature Museum Reserve. Argun area was part of intense fighting during the wars, therefore most of its landmarks (which are most numerous in North Caucasus) suffered serious damage.