MTATSMINDA, or Mount of st. Father David is located to the west from downtown Tbilisi, at the bifurcation of Trialeti mountain range, 700 meters above the sea level. It is one of the most important natural, historical and cultural sightseeing locations of Georgia. Mtatsminda is covered with artificial pine tree forests and proudly rises over the capital of Georgia. The spread between downtown Tbilisi and height of Mtatsminda is nearly 400 meters that is why typical effective landscapes and important recreational goal are its natural functions. From Mtatsminda one can observe the whole view of Tbilisi. To review its panorama there are several lookout terraces. From Mtatsminda one can also see the slope of Kavkasioni mountain range and snowy summit, Saguramo-Ialno ountain range and Iori highland, river Mtkvari and Tbilisi sea. There are different transit options to reach it, the most popular among them being rail track and cable cars. Nowadays the largest in Georgia theme park and a TV tower are located on Mtatsminda.
MOUNT OF ST. FATHER DAVID rises above the city from the west, its height from the sea level is 727 meters and it is located 330 meters above the sea level from the embankment of river Mtkvari. In the middle of its slope is Church of st. Father David and pantheon of Georgian writers and public figures. The name of the mount and the Church is linked to the life and activity of st.Father David of Gareji – one of the thirteen Assyrian saints. In the middle of the VI century AD he set up here a small site of worship and a cell. Then Mazdeists have expelled st.Father David from the town. In the IX century AD the Church of irgin Mary of Iveria was built here. That is why the mount of st. Father David has been given a second name – Mtatsminda (means “holy mount”). In the course of time the Church has been damaged. In 1810, under the auspices of Catholicos-Patriarch of Georgia, Anton II, a clergyman of Kashveti, Thoma Grigoriev, with donation financing, erected a church of Transfiguration on Mtatsminda. In 1859 again with the help of public donations, a son of Thoma Grigoriev, Joseph, launched a construction of a new and bigger cathedral of Father David of Gareji which was finished only in 1877. In 1889 mural paintings of the cathedral were completed.
The size of the cathedral today is as follows: height (with a cross) - 25, 7 meters, length – 17,2 meters, width – 10,7 meters. In 1929 Pantheon of Georgian Writers and Public Figures was established in the courtyard of the Church where the most outstanding sons of Georgia have been laid to rest, including: Ilia Chavchavadze, Akaki Tsereteli, Vazha Pshavela, Galaktion Tabidze, the first president of Georgia, Zviad Gamsakhurdia. Famous Russian poet, Alexander Griboedov, and Stalin’s mother were also buried in the pantheon.
Copyright © 2017. N. Elizbarashvili, B. Kupatadze
Copyright © 2017. “Dani” Publishing