Georgian Language and Script

Georgian Language and Script| Georgian language| Georgian alphabet


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Georgian (ქართული ენა, kartuli ena) is the official language of Georgia. The language belongs to the Iberian - Caucasian group and there are three: Georgian, Svan and Mengrelo - Laz dialects.

Georgian alphabet is one of the 14 existing alphabets in the world. It consists of 33 letters. The majority of scientists believe that it was derived from one of the Semitic alphabets around the 6th - 5th centuries BC. The alphabet has been modernized during the centuries, but never lost the original roots. A Georgian historian informs us that the script was created in the 3rd c. BC by Georgian King Parnavaz. The mosaic inscription in the Judean desert in Palestine is known as the oldest Georgian inscription ever found. It dates back to the 433 AD. Bolnisi Sioni Church, situated south of Tbilisi, also has one of the oldest (493 AD) inscriptions in Georgian. The oldest manuscript (864 AD) is kept in St. Catherine’s Monastery on the Sinai Peninsula.

Georgian literature has an ancient and remarkable history. The oldest known literary work "The Martirdom of Shushanik" was written in 476 - 483 AD by Iakob Tsurtaveli.

"The Knight in the Panther Skin" created by Shota Rustaveli at the end of the 12th century is the most brilliant literary work in Georgian literature. The poem has been translated into different languages all around the world.


Georgian is the primary language of about 3.9 million people in Georgia, (83 percent of the population), and of another 500,000 Georgians abroad (chiefly in Turkey, Iran, Russia, USA and Europe). It is a literary language for all ethnographic groups of Georgian people, especially those who speak other South Caucasian or Kartvelian languages, (Svans, Megrelians, and the Laz).

Gruzinic, or ‘Kivruli’, sometimes considered to be a separate Jewish language, is spoken by an additional 20,000 people in Georgia and 65,000 elsewhere (primarily 60,000 in Israel).


Georgian Alphabet

The Georgian alphabet

I: Asomtavruli ("capital") or Mrgvlovani ("rounded"): oldest alphabet
II: Nuskhuri ("minuscule") or Kutkhovani ("squared"), also Khutsuri ("church script"): mainly miniscules for Asomtavruli
III: Mkhedruli ("secular" or "military writing""): the modern alphabet
IV: names of the letters
V: numeric values of the letters
VI: Latin transcription

Note: Some letters (lavender rows in the table above) have become obsolete.

The dialects of Georgian include Imeretian, Racha-Lechkhumian, Gurian, Ajarian, Imerkhevian (in Turkey), Kartlian, Kakhetian, Ingilo (in Azerbaijan), Tush, Khevsur, Mokhevian, Pshavian, Mtiuletian, Fereydan (in Iran), Meskhetian.

  • Viator Top Rated 2016

    Viator Top Rated 2016

    Georgian Holidays has achieved Viator\'s 2016 Top Rated Award, distinguishing us as an outstanding activity provider for the world\'s leading online resource for booking tours and activities.

  • ITB Berlin 2017

    ITB Berlin 2017

    Please, contact us to arrange the meeting on ITB Berlin 2017 at Georgian Stand #103, hall 15.1 on 8-12 March, 2017. Visit Georgian Holidays on ITB Berlin!

  • WTM London 2017

    WTM London 2017

    Please, contact us to arrange meeting on WTM London 2017 at Georgian Stand #EU450 on 6-8 November, 2017 Visit Georgian Holidays on WTM London!

  • Holiday Fair Brussels 2017

    Holiday Fair Brussels 2017

    Please, contact us to arrange the meeting at Georgian Stand or visit us on Holiday Fair Brussels, stand 5424, hall 5, 2-5 February, 2017!

  • TTG Rimini 2017

    TTG Rimini 2017

    Please, contact us to arrange the meeting on TTG Rimini 2017 at Georgia Stand Pavilion A1, lane 1/2, area 034-049 on 12-14 October, 2017. Visit us on TTG Rimini!

  • GTA


    Georgian Tourism Association - GTA carries out projects to improve tourism development in Georgia in partnership with Department of Tourism and Resorts, Agency of Protected Areas, International Organizations (USAID/SME project, GTZ Private Sector Development project, GTZ regional communal development project, IUCN etc.), local partners (i.e. Elkana, Geoland) and member companies. GTA is the member of UNWTO Knowledge Network, of GSTC (Global Sustainable Tourism Council), of GCCI (Georgian Chamber of Commerce and Industry) and member of ICC (International Chamber of Commerce).



    HEIFER INTERNATIONAL implements the project Sustainable Development of Rural Tourism in Black Sea countries

  • Leader of the Branch 2016

    Leader of the Branch 2016

    Gold Medal and International Certificate \"Leader of the Branch 2016\"/ Winner of National Business Award