History of Tbilisi

February 27th, 2011

 

Tbilisi

Tbilisi

History of Tbilisi

In Mtskheta, King Vakhtang let his hawk loose one day and it chased after a pheasant. The King waited. He could not see the hawk, nor the pheasant. He Followed the path that the hawk had, taken down the valley. At the bottom of the valley flowed steaming waters, the color of sulfur. The pheasant had drowned and the hawk sat above. Enchanted with the source of the hot waters, the King founded Tbilisi in the valley’ (Tbili’ means warm in Georgian).

A blend of cultures, a smell of spices on the air, different nations meeting on street corners, different faiths sharing the same courtyards, …this is Tbilisi, the city that has been dominated by traders, warriors, tyrants and dictators in turn. Take a walk around the old town, and breathe in the living past. Visit the bustling markets, the ancient sulfur baths, the dazzling treasury, and the magnificent churches, and gain a sense of the crossing place of the Caucasus. Tbilisi – It is a town which conquers you with a slow fascination and lodges in your heart forever.

Archaeological studies of the region have revealed that the territory of Tbilisi was settled by humans as early as the 4th millennium B.C.E. The earliest actual (recorded) accounts of settlement of the location come from the second half of the 4th century AD, when a fortress was built during King Varaz-Bakur’s reign. Towards the end of the 4th century the fortress fell into the hands of the Persians after which the location fell back into the hands of the Kings of Kartli (Georgia) by the middle of the 5th century A.D. King Vakhtang I Gorgasali (reigned in the middle and latter part of the 5th century), who is largely credited for founding Tbilisi, was actually responsible for reviving and building up the city and not founding it. The present-day location of the area which Gorgasali seems to have built up is spread out around the Metekhi cliff and the latter-day Abanot-Ubani neighbourhood.

About Sighnaghi

February 27th, 2011

Sighnaghi

Sighnaghi

About Sighnaghi

Sighnaghi is a little city in Georgia. Sighnaghi is a administrative center of Georgia. In

In Sighnaghi lives 2.1 thousand man. The town has an area of 2.978 kmВІ with 24.3% being residential. Sighnaghi is approximately 113 km southeast of Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia. Sighnaghi District is adjacent, on the town’s east and southwest sides. Sighnaghi is situated in the eastern foothills of the Gombori Range, a watershed between the Iori and Alazani valleys, in a productive agricultural and fruit-growing region. At the elevation of about 790 m above sea level, the town overlooks the Alazani Valley and faces the Greater Caucasus mountains.

Sighnaghi has a mild humid climate. There are four seasons, with winters being moderately cold while summers can be hot. The highest average temperature is in July at 24.3В°C while the lowest average temperature is in January at 0.2В°C. Average annual precipitation ranges from 602.1 to 949.7 mm, with the heaviest occurring during the spring months and early summer.

History of Sighnaghi:

The territory of the modern-day town has been settled since the Paleolithic period and was known as Hereti in the Middle Ages, and as Kiziqi after the 15th century. Sighnaghi (literally, “harbor” in Turkish) as a settlement is first recorded in the early 18th century. In 1762, King Heraclius II of Georgia sponsored the construction of the town and erected a fortress to defend the area from marauding attacks by Dagestan tribesmen. As of the 1770 census, Sighnaghi was settled by 100 families, chiefly craftsmen and merchants. When Georgia was annexed by Imperial Russia in 1801, Sighnaghi was officially granted town status and became a centre of Signakh uyezd within Tiflis Governorate in 1802. The town quickly rose in its size and population and became an agricultural centre under the Soviet Union. The severe economic crisis in post-Soviet Georgia heavily affected the town, but a major reconstruction project recently launched by the Government of Georgia and co-funded by several international organizations intends to address an increasing tourist interest and modernize infrastructure.



Republic of Georgia

February 27th, 2011
Georgia Map

Georgia Map

Georgia

Georgia is a Republic, which is mainly populated by ethnic Georgians. In X century, Georgia was an ethnic-cultural concept and meant “Qarti” tomme’s and Georgian cultural auspices of all the South Caucasian and some nongeorgian tomme’s cultural unity, and later – their ethnic-cultural-religios-social-economic and political unity, which’s final form – united state, established in XI century. In XII-XIV centuries, Georgia was called the entire Christian and partly Muslim Caucasus. In XIV century, after collapse of country into kingdom-principalities, the term “Georgia” lost it’s meaning. For foreigners it became, etchic-geographical concept ( Gruzia, Vrastan, Gurjistan, etc.).

Georgia Nature

Georgia Nature

Location, nature, climate

Georgia is a country situated in south-east Europe, which borders with Black Sea from the West, Azerbaijan, from the East, Russia, from the North, Turkey and Armenia from the south. Great Caucasus cringe separates Russia from Georgia, the South border goes through the Small Caucasus’s highlands and volcanic slopes. 85 % of country’s territory is mountainous. The height of the highest peaks of Caucasus exceeds 5000 meters.

Diversity of physical-geographical and climatic conditions and multitude of natural waters, also the plants brought from different places of Earth, causes the wealthiness and uniqueness of it’s flora. In Georgia we can found Black Sea’s sandy coasts, everlasting snow covered peaks, humid subtropics and semi-deserts, unique sphagnum swamps and valley’s dressed with dense forests, also almost untouchable areas of wildlife. Due to such variety of nature in Georgia, one can go skiing in the mountains in summer and after that swim the sea.

Georgia has a subtropical climate, summer temperature is approximately 30-35 degrees, in winter from -20 up to +15 degrees.

Population

Population

Population

The country territory’s total area is 69500 KM2. Georgia includes several historic-geographic regions : Kartli, Kakheti, Pshavi, Khevsureti,Mtiuleti, Gudamaqari, Tusheti (Eastern Georgia), Imereti,Guria, Adjara, Samegrelo, Racha, Lechkhumi, Svaneti (Western Georgia), part of historic Samtskhe-Javakheti and Meskhet(South Georgia).Total population approximately is 5 399 000 people, of which 71 % are ethnic Georgians, 8% are Armenians, 5% are Russians, 3% are Ossetians, 6% are Azeri, 1% – Ukrainians, 0,2% – Greeks and 2% – Jews

Metekhi Tbilisi

Metekhi Tbilisi

Historical outlines

Georgia is one of the most ancient countries in the world, with 3 millenium history. The first Georgian states, Diaokhi(in the South-West of Georgia) and Kolkha(on the Black Sea South-East coast) existed yet still in XII-VIII centuries BC. In VI-IV centuries BC, kingdoms of Egrisi and Kartli were established on the territory of Georgia. The kingdom of Kartli particularly strengthened in IV-III centuries BC, during the reign of Parnavaz. At this time, Kartli’s capital was Mtskheta, and the main deity was – Armaz.

Vth century. Vakhtang Gorgasali’s reign period is connected with creation of Tbilisi and building churches on the whole territory of the country.

VII-IX centuries. Arabs dominated in Georgia. During the battle with Arabs, the united feudal Georgian monarchy developed with Bagrat III leadership.

XI-XII centuries. During David Aghmashenebeli and Tamar’s reign, the country’s military success and brilliant achievements in the economy and in culture made Georgia the strongest country. During Tamar’s reign, death penalty was abolished in Georgia. In this period, Rustaveli wrote his masterpiece : “Vepkhistkaosani”

From XIII century, Mongols long reign begins with devastating invasions of Tamerlan. XV century. Georgia disbanded into kingdom-principalities. Turkish- Ottoman powerful kingdom became the Western neighbour of Georgia, which eventually plucked Georgia from Western Europe. In South-East several Turkish kingdoms established, and Russia moored Georgia from the North. XVI-XVIII centuries. Georgian kingdoms principalities devotedly fought for independence. Iran – Turkish endless wars were destroying the country. At the end of XVIII century, Erekle II tried to restore the unity of the country, but he was able to do it only in Kakheti and in Kartli temporary.

By the treatise of Georgievsk in 1783, Eastern Georgia went into Russia’s protection, In 1801, Russia abolished Kartli-Kakheti kingdom and joined it to it’s empire. Soon in the Western Georgia and in whole Caucasus, Russian colonial regime established.

After the Russian Revolution in 1917, Georgia became temporary independent, but soon Bolsheviks conquered it. Only after Soviet Union collapse, Georgia reached complete independence.

After collapse of Soviet Union and it’s putsch, Georgia regained its independence(it was officialy announced on May 26, 1991), and in 1995 Georgia adopted a new constitution and became presidential republic.

Traditions and customs

Georgian traditions and customs are unique. The regale of guest is duty of all members of family, especially for the table head – Tamada.

Some Georgian traditions were gradually forgotten.

 

Religion

During non-christianity in Georgia, people worshiped national deities. From first century A.B, christianity spreads in Georgia. In 337, during king Mirian reign, with the liturgy of St. Nino the Kabadokian, christianity is declared as the state religion. In V century, Georgian Orthodox Church autocephalous was declared.

The most part of Georgians are Orthodox Christians, there are also Catholics – mostly in South Georgia and Islamic confessors – mostly in Adjara. Thus, one can see synagogues and a mosque near Georgian Orthodox churches.

Culture

Georgia is located on the two biggest cultures crossroad – Eastern and Western. That’s why, Georgian culture is a kind of mixture of Eastern and Western cultures and traditions. It’s evidents are ancient archeological monuments found in archeological excavations. Ancient period left palaces, fortresses – and the remains of ancient cities(Uplistsikhe, Armazi, Urbnisi, Vani, etc.). Also excellent examples of metalwork, ceramics production, mosaic art and other branches of art.

The main styles of Georgian churches are basilica and central dome. Ancient basilicas are dated for IV-VI centuries, the style of central dome dominated in VI century and reached the peak of development in XI-XII centuries.