Tbilisi Historic District
On the edge of two great continents - Europe and Asia, Tbilisi, the capital city of Georgia, has been developing for over 15 centuries. Diverse evidence is provided by historical sources, as well as the notes and drawings of various travelers. An interesting process can be observed in its urban heritage, where eclectic architecture adopts oriental influences, undergoes creative transformation, and adapts to traditional Georgian dwellings. Its planning structure still thrives in the Kala district, reflecting its unique artistic and architectural integrity.
The remarkable character of the city is influenced by the specific natural setting, playing an active role in shaping its overall appearance. Despite significant interventions, the original connection between the city and its environment is still preserved. The narrow portion of the riverbed chosen for its location, the mountain ridge on the right bank destined for the citadel, and the picturesque rocky plateau on the opposite side are prominently visible in the city's general silhouette. The minor structures of the Late Medieval urban fabric provide a favorable background to the architectural accents - Narikala Fortress and Metekhi Church - crowning these natural monuments.
Tbilisi holds great historical significance as the permanent capital of the Georgian state since its foundation up to the present. It served as a grand city on the historical Silk Road for centuries and became the center of the entire Caucasus from the 19th century onwards.
The city's architectural aspect is defined by the unique Tbilisian spirit and the character of residential houses, which have evolved within its community. These houses, with their age-old traditional dwelling types, reflect not only the way of life and tastes of the multi-national, free, and tolerant inhabitants but also create a warm and human environment that remains highly acceptable and desirable today. The traditional southern dwellings feature characteristic elements such as balconies and courtyards, which become integral components of Tbilisi dwelling houses. The organic interconnection of the city with the mountain slope and rocky plateau, the dynamics of street outlines, dwellings, views, ensembles of buildings, and the multi-layered urban fabric all contribute to Tbilisi's unique urban phenomenon, manifesting its historical significance. Despite the challenges of destruction and renovation, the city retains its originality and artistic individuality.
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