Holy Martyrs, the Brothers Davit and Tarichan (†693)

Memory 18 (31) May

Holy Martyrs Davit and Tarichan. Holy Martyrs Davit and Tarichan.
Holy Martyrs Davit and Tarichan.

The holy martyrs Davit and Tarichan were born to Vardanand Tagine, pious Christians and relatives of the king.Vardan died while his sons were still young, and Tagine’spagan brother Theodosius seized all the family’s possessions. Concerned that the brothers would eventually claim their legal inheritance, Theodosius resolved to convert his sister and nephews to his own creed. “Leave behind the Faith of the crucifiedChrist and receive mine and I will adopt your children,” he told Tagine.

But Tagine firmly guarded the family against her brother’s evil intent.“It is enough that you have seized my sons’ estate,” she said. “Butyou cannot seize the inheritance they will receive from their Father inheaven!”

Theodosius was thwarted by his sister’s resoluteness. So instead,he tried to convert his nephews directly. He called them, embracedthem warmly, and tempted them with sweets. “Now you are my sons,and everything I have belongs to you,” he told them. “Trust me likeobedient sons of a beloved father. Turn from the Faith of your father,and I will show you a better way!”

After a brief silence, the holy youths answered, “We are perfectlycontent with our father’s Faith and will remain loyal to this Faith untilthe day our souls depart from our flesh. We are prepared to suffer everythingfor the love of our Lord and Heavenly Father!”

Theodosius dared not try to sway his nephews since he feared therevenge of the Christian community, so he left them in peace and plottedto murder them in secret. But Tagine sensed that danger was nearand escaped with her sons to the region of Tao in the south.

From his spies Theodosius learned that the brothers were nowherding sheep at the top of a mountain, and he ordered an ambush.But the brothers heard the noise and saw the armed soldiers beforethey attacked. Davit rejoiced upon seeing his uncle and ran towardhim, but Theodosius stabbed him before he could embrace him. Theholy martyr released his staff from his hand, and when it fell to theground it was miraculously transformed into a large tree. Two hundred years later a group of Christians chopped the tree down and dividedthe holy wood among themselves.

Having just witnessed his own brother’s murder, Tarichan racedtoward the village of Divri for help. But his pursuers overtook him,stabbed him to death, and ran off. When they returned to Theodosius,they saw that God had punished him by taking away his sight. The soldierswere stunned, and they could neither utter a word nor move fromthe place of this miracle. After some time Theodosius’ eyes filled withbitter tears, and he was finally moved to repentance.

At first Tagine denounced her brother in a rage, and those whoheard the cries of the inconsolable mother wept along with her. Butwhile she was stroking the lifeless bodies of her sons, Theodosiusturned to her, saying, “On you has shone the Inextinguishable Lightfrom the Unapproachable and True Light, the Eternal Light. Pray tothe holy martyrs that the Lord have mercy on me and make me, theunworthy, worthy of the seal of Christ, the All-merciful God, Whocame into the world. Indeed, He is the One True God!”

When Tagine heard these words, she recognized that God had receivedher sons as a holy sacrifice. Filled with new joy, she told herbrother, “May God forgive you the murder of my sons!”

Then she took a piece of the earth that had been stained by herson Davit’s blood and anointed her brother’s eyes. Immediately hissight was restored.

This happened in the year 693. As a witness to the sanctity of Hismartyrs, our God, Who loves mankind, illumined their bodies with aradiant light each evening when night fell.

Theodosius repented before the catholicos himself. He was baptizedinto the Christian Faith and erected a church in honor of hisnephew St. Davit. The mayor of Divri took St. Tarichan’s holy relicsand built a church over them in his name. Blessed Tagine began a newlife in the village of Tadzarani and later reposed there.

O Holy Saints Davit and Tarichan, honorable martyrs of the ChristianFaith, pray to Christ, Who has crowned you, to have mercy on our souls!

Archpriest Zakaria Machitadze

For further information on the book THE LIVES OF THE GEORGIAN SAINTS by Archpriest Zakaria Machitadze contact St. Herman Press:
St. Herman Press, P.O. Box 70, Platina, CA 96076


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