Nikortsminda - Racha-Lechkhumi



Nikortsminda - Racha-Lechkhumi

Nikortsminda – The Stone Harmony… The wonderful art of cutting stone…
The domed Nikortsminda Cathedral stands on a little hill, overlooking the village of the same name, in the province of Racha. According to the inscription on the western entrance it was built in 1010-1014, during the reign of King Bagrat 3. The fres¬cos in the interior date from the 17th century. The spec¬imens of this later-epoch mural painting, the wealth of decorative ornaments, the mastery of their execu¬tion, and an exceedingly interesting sculptural decor produce a deep impression. The facades of the Cathe¬dral are faced in smoothly hewn stone. The Cathedral ii abundantly decorated with rich ornaments. Here is a generous amount of multiple-figured story-telling reliefs and episodes: "The Transfiguration", "The-Judgement Day", "The Ascension of the Cross", figures of saints, of real and imaginary animals, which form one whole, premeditated program. Nikortsminda reaches the top of the sculptural decoration of Georgian Churches. Sev¬eral masters had worked on the ornaments of the Ca¬thedral. Their styles are very much different from each other, which tells on the selection of motifs, and the manner of execution. The windows have ornamented architraves. The southern and western portals were built later, they date from early 11th cent. In 1634 King Bagrat III of Imereti repaired the building. The three storeyed bell-tower in the Cathedral grounds was built in the second half of the 12th century.



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