History of Martvili Monasterial Complex - Samegrelo



History of Martvili Monasterial Complex - Samegrelo

History tells us that Chkondidi has always been a religious center. on a tall foothill stood a very large oak tree. It marked the prayer grounds for fertility, fruitfulness and prosperity for all the locals.
In the 1st century, Apostle of Christ - Andrew the first, converted the natives who then cut down the oak tree and built a christian church in its place.
Martvili-Chkondidi Cathedral was built late in the 7th century. Revered as the gem of Georgian masonry, this cathedral rests on the roots of the old oak tree.
During the 10th century, King of Abkhazia Giorgi II, designated Martvili-Chkondidi Monastery as episcopal center. Cathedral retained its name.
Martvili Monastery was considered a major educutional center. It is the final resting place of King Bagrat IV, whose contributions to the cultural and educational development of Georgia are immense.
As a cultural and educational center for the entire western Georgia, this center not only created original literary works, but also translated many pieces to and from georgian.
Some of the most famous Georgian Religious philosphers and educators who worked and livevd at the Martvili Monastery are listed below:
Stephane Chkondideli - 10th century
Giorgi Chkondideli - 11th Century
Johan Chkondideli - 11th Century
Svimon Chkondideli - 12th Century
Anton Chkondideli - 13th Century
Arsen Chkondideli - 13th Century
Anton Chkondideli - 15th Century
Romanoz Mesvete - 19th Century
Among them the most famous was Giorgi Chkondideli who was a mentor and trusted advisor to King David the Builder.
Martvili Monasterial Complex has a strategic geographic location from where most of western Georgia can be seen. The main Cathedral is named "Blessed Vergin Repose Cathedral". During the Turkish-Arabic invasions it was almost completely destroyed, but in the 10th century Giorgi II rebuit it.
Some of 14th, 15th, 16th, and 17th century frescos are still preserved in the main Cathedral and they represent some of the highest quality craftsmaship in the Georgian history.



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