Georgian Language

Georgian Language (Kartuli) is the mother tongue for Georgians and the official state language for the country. About 5 million people in the world speak the Georgian language.

Georgian (Kartuli) language is part of the Caucasian language family – Kartvelian Languages. Megruli (Megrelian, Mengrelian), Svanuri (Svan) and Lazuri (Laz) Languages are also part of the same language family. These three languages have preserved the archaic Georgian language. It is thanks to these languages we’re able to study the development of the common tongue – Georgian (Kartuli) and generally the history of it.

Where did the Georgian language come from?

Linguists have been studying the Georgian language since 17-18th centuries. At this time it was an accepted idea that all of the languages in the world had evolved from Ancient Hebrew Language. However, scholars had a huge interest in the Asian languages also, because they showed signs of older development steps. Soon scholars started to believe languages where more geography based. Johann Christoph Adelung, a well known scholar of his time, classified Georgian as an Asian language.

Few authors, connected the ancient Georgian Language – Kolkhuri (Kolxuri, Kolkha) to the Egyptian language. This theories were mostly based on the opinions of Antique age. At this time, scholars assumed Kolhks (Kolkhetians) were distant relatives of Egyptians.

Georgian Alphabets

Georgian Language uses a unique Mkhedruli(Cavalry) Alphabet, which is a result of the further development of the Nuskhuri Alphabet. No one knows when the Mkhedruli alphabet originated. This is mostly because it used to be a secret alphabet. That’s where the name Mkhedruli – Cavalry, comes from. Georgian Cavalry used this alphabet for passing secret information. As it was a secret alphabet, the date of creation or the author is unknown.

Across the course of history Georgia has gone through 3 alphabets – Asomtavruli (Mrgvlovani), Nuskhuri (Nusxuri), Mkhedruli. There are 33 letters in an alphabet, 28 consonants and 5 vowels. The Alhpabet is Phonetic, so it’s very simple to read. Every letter has only one sound without exceptions.

In today’s Georgia not everyone talks in foreign languages so learning a few words and phrases before arrival is always a good idea. We’ve tried to make it fun for you, you can continue reading the Top Useful Phrases in Georgian.

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