Khertvisi fortress

Name Khertvisi comes from the verb designating the confluence of two rivers.

Khertvisi fortress is one of the oldest fortresses in Georgia and was functional throughout the Georgian feudal period. It is situated in Southern Georgia, in Meskheti region. The fortress was first build in the 2nd century BC. The church was built in 985, and the present walls build in 1354.

Khertvisi fortress is a well-preserved complex construction. The buildings that is preserved to this day belong to the X-XIX centuries. From the eastern wall two tunnels lead down to the river, one served as a water supply route, the other for communication. A legend has it that Alexander the Great visited the site during his Eastern Campaign in the 4th century BC.

Khertvisi was repeatedly rebuilt. In 1356-1356, Zakaria Kamkamishvili, Treasurer of the King, built the tower and wall. In the XVI century the fortress belonged to the feudal family Hertvisari. In 1578 the Turks captured Khertvisi with other fortresses of Samtskhe – Saatabago. In 1828-1829, after the victory of Russia over Turkey, the fortress was returned to Georgia. At that time, Khertvisi, along with other Georgian fortresses, lost its strategic importance.

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