This electronic version of the history of surnames (family names) of the Georgian noble families has been compiled from the genealogical work: "Brief description of surnames of the Georgian nobility" of the well-known Georgian statesman, writer and scientist Ioane Bagrationi-Batonishvili (1768-1830) who was a son of the last king of Qarthl-Kakhethi George XII. The work is one of the important sources for making a close study of the origin and history of the Georgian surnames. It comprises an etymology of over 300 noble surnames of the Kingdom ofGeorgia, their social status, etc.
The above-mentioned work for the first time was published in the magazine "Iveria", by Ilia Chavchavadze in 1884, where Ilia mentioned that: "We extract this description of the history of the Georgian noble surnames from manuscript, which had Professor D. I. Chubinashvili in his library". Later, a writer and historian Polievktos Karbelashvili (1855-1936) completely rewrote by his hand this description (which was published in the "Iveria" by Ilia) of surnames, and this manuscript is kept in Georgian Central State Historic Archive (collection 1461, file 27). The manuscript of Ioane Batonishvili's work is also kept in the Institute of Manuscripts of the Georgian Academy of Sciences (collection S # 3729). Ioan's same work was published as a separate book as well in 1997 (editor and publisher Zurab Katselashvili) according to the published text in the "Iveria" by Ilia.
The work of Ioan Batonishvili is an important and a valuable source for Georgian genealogy. But, some of his evidence looks unreliable and requests additional scientific study, which isn't our purpose. But, because of the origin of some real Georgian surnames from "Kitai", Ethiopia,Italy, Persia, Armenia, etc, could be strange information to the readers, we think that it is necessary to explain briefly its reason.
It is generally known that almost in all the countries of feudal era, each noble family used to want to show the ties of relationship with some noble surnames of the foreign states. For instance, some of the Russian nobles were trying to improve that as if almost all their kin (generation) had been coming from the Variags (Vikings); The Hungarian nobles (earls: Hadiks, Ziches, etc.) were trying to prove the ties of a blood relationship with the Georgians (R. Khutsishvili, Hungarian-Caucasian Problem, Thbilisi, 1994. p. 212); To cut the long story short, in Georgia the Bagrations linked their posterity with the Hebrew Kings - biblical Jesus, David and Solomon. Even their titles began so: "We, Jesusian, Davidian and Solomonian Bagratovans…" It is known that the Orbelianis has been declaring the Chinese as their ancestors. Also, the families of Amilakhvari, Eristhavi, Tsitsishvili etc, were declaring that their forefathers are the foreigners. Professor Iase Tsintsadze correctly notes (Russian Early Feudal State, Thbilisi, 1968. P. 26), that they were working out this non-existed history of their surnames because of being different from a local ruling circle and having more rights of ownership, as if, it had been given to their forefathers in the foreign country. According to the opinion of Academician George Meliqishvili: "Often, in such cases it was related only to the ruler strata and origin of their dynasty, because they were trying to dissociate more sharply from their people's basic masses" (Essays on Georgian history, Thbilisi, 1970. v. I. p. 313).
The official list of Georgian nobility which was entered in the so-called “Barkhatnaia Kniga” (Velvet Book) edited and approved in St-Petersburg, 1850.
The princes (Thavadi)
bagration-mukhranski, abashidze, phalavandishvili, chkheidze, kherkheulidze, jambakur-orbeliani, meliqishvili, avalishvili, begthabegishvili, eristhavi, barathashvili, machabeli, diasamidze, solaghashvili, sumbathashvili, amilakhvari, bagration-davithashvili, javakhishvili, phavlenishvili, thumanishvili, khidirbegishvili, tsitsishvili, tharkhan-mouravi, amirejibi, choloqhashvili, jorjadze, maqhashvili, tusishvili, gurgenidze, saginashvili, khimshiashvili, tchavtchavadze, vakhvakhishvili, jandierishvili, qharalashvili, lionidze, andronikashvili, vachnadze, cherqezishvili, guramishvili, dseretheli, japharidze, abameliqi, babadishishvili, robitashvili
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