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Atlas of the Caucasian Languages
with Language Guide
In series: Linguarium - ATLAS of the LANGUAGES of the WORLD (ALW)

Linguarium publications ordering info sample maps Languages of the World series
contents genealogic chart introduction overview

This is a part of the Guide in Atlas of the Caucasian languages. It covered Kartvelian family of languages.
2 KARTVELIAN family [26]; south caucasian, kartvelic, iberian; , , ; (Grg) kartveluri; #< kartveli 'a Georgian' in Georgian All languages of this family are spoken southward of Caucasian Range, in the western Transcaucasia. It comprises 5 living languages and 1 old literary language.
K. was earlier believed to form "Ibero-Caucasian" unity along with North Caucasian but now it's proved that K. is independent family possibly comprising part of Nostratic macrofamily where it is close to Indo-European.
  Note: Name of Ancient Iveria / Iberia kingdom (C, E & SW of Georgia) is base for two linguonyms:

'iberian' is applied as to the whole Kartvelian family as to Georgian proper;
'iverian' is applied only to Mingrelian.

The fact that these languages are related was first noticed by I. Guldenstedt in the 18th century and later proven by G. Rozen, M. Brosset, F. Bopp and others during the 1850's. Maps: #5,6,12-18.

2-A SOUTH KARTVELIAN group [43], georgian-zanic; , - Includes all Kartvelian languages exc. Svan.
2-B ZAN group [57], zanic, colchian, kolkhic, kolchian, laz-mingrelian; , ; (Grg) zanuri Georgia; Turkey. Sometimes (esp. in Georgia) Zan languages are viewed as dialects of a single language although they are inherently unintelligible and lack common formal standard. Maps: #5,14-16,18.
2-1 mingrelian, mingrel, megrel, megrelian, odish, eger, egris, iverian; , , ; (Grg) megruli, odiuri; ethnonyms: margali, megreli @ margaluri nina NW. Georgia [~400k (L1), ~1,000k (EG)], including Abkhazia, from where most fled to Georgia (some remained only in SE.); ▶Russia. All bilingual in Georgian which is used as literary language. First attempts to introduce writing were in 1860s (in Cyrillic script). Since 1920s writing became more regular (in Georgian script with additional letters) but was abandoned in 1933. Since then only in 1990s some books in M. appeared in Abkhazia. In Georgia writing in Mingrelian is banned and Mingrelian is often viewed as a dialect of Georgian and speakers as ethnically Georgians. Maps: #5,14,15.
2-1aa     west mingrelian; samurzaqan-zugdidi, zugdid-samurzakanoyan;  
2-1aaa     samurzaqan; samurzakan; samurzaqanuli @ murzaqaniši SE. Abkhazia: Gali rayon; partly fled to Georgia
2-1aab     zugdidi; zugdid; zugdiduri @ zugidiši Inguri basin: Zugdidi (Zugidi)
2-1aac     jvar, dzhvar @ ǯvariši middle Inguri basin: Jvari and environs
2-1ab     east mingrelian; senaki, senakian, senak; senak'uri, senakiši     Rioni north basin: Senak'i (Tskhakaia)
2-1aba     martvil, gegechkori @ martviliši  
2-2 laz, chan, lazian, lazish; (Tur) lazca; (Grg) č'anuri; , @ lazuri nena Total: up to 33k. NE. Turkey [~30k (L1), ~60k (L2), ~115k (EG) in 1980]: Rize; Artvin ils; ▶W. Anatolia (Bolu, Bursa, Istanbul, Kocaeli, Sakarya, Zonguldak ils); Georgia [~2k]; ▶Belgium, France, Germany, USA. Bilingual in Turkish.  In 1984 an alphabet (in Roman script ) was developed in Germany and is sporadically used in Germany and Turkey. Maps: #14,16,18.
2-2aa     atina, pazar, atinian; @ atinuri     NE. Rize: from Merdivenli to north-east.
2-2aaa     atina proper     Pazar (Atina)
2-2aab     bulep-artashen, ardeşen     Ardeşen (Artashen)
2-2ab     vice-arkhava, vitse-arkabe, vitso-arkabian, arhava-vital, findikli-arhavi, @ vic'ur-arkabuli, vijur-arkabuli     NE. Rize: Fındıklı (Vice); NW. Artvin: Arhavi (Arkabi)
2-2ac     khopian, hopa, xopa, khopa @ xopuri     NW. Artvin: Hopa (Hope); Georgia frontier: Adjaria (Sarpi village).
2-2ad     chhala, çhalu, chhala @ çxaluri     NW. Artvin: villages between Hopa & Borçka.
2-C GEORGIAN group, iberian; , Tradionally all modern varieties are treated as a single language due to common literary language and ethnic consciousness.
2-3 OLD GEORGIAN; (Grg) šveli kartuli Map: #13.
2-3a Ancient Georgian; old literary georgian Georgia, 5-11th cc.  From 5th c. Mrglovani (Asomtavruli (="upper-case"), Old Georgian) script; from 9th c. Nuskhuri ((="lower-case"), Nuskha-khutsuri, Khutsuri, Georgian church) script.
2-3b Middle Georgian; pre-modern georgian, classic literary Georgian Georgia, 11-18th cc. From 11th c. Mkhedruli (-xeli (=soldier's hand), Saero (="civil"), Georgian civil) script.
2-3c Church Georgian Georgia. Used in Georgian Orthodox church. Khutsuri (Georgian church) script.
2-4 GEORGIAN, modern georgian, gruzin, gurji; (Bats) k'oxan; (Arm) vraci; ; @ kartuli, kharthuli Total: ~3,290k (L1), ~2,016k (L2). Georgia [~3,062k (L1), 1,927k (L2), 3,497k (EG) in 2001]; Azerbaijan [~14k], Iran [1k-10k], Russia [~45k (L1), 131k (EG)], Turkey [~40k (L1), 91k (EG) in 1980], ▶ Armenia [1,300], Israel [40k-50k in 1995], Kazakhstan [8k], Kyrgyzstan [1k], Tajikistan [808], Turkmenistan [1k], Ukraine [24k], USA [757], Uzbekistan [4k]. National language in Georgia. Maps: #5,12,14-18.
2-4a West Georgian, south-west georgian; Georgia; Turkey Dialects form three groups: Racha-Lechkhum, Imerian and Gurian-Adjarian.
2-4aa     imerian, imeretian @ imeruli     W. Georgia.
2-4aaa     lower imerian, west imerian @ imer-kvemouri     Rioni middle basin.
2-4aab     upper imerian, east imerian @ imer-zemouri     Transitional to Kartlian.
2-4ab     rachian, racha, raca @ račuli     Rioni upper basin; ▶Adigenis rayon.
2-4aba     upper racha, mountain racha  
2-4ac     lechkhumian, lechxum, lecxum, lechkhum @ lečxumuri     Rioni upper-middle basin.
2-4ad     gurian, guri, gurulian @ guruli     Guria (Supsa basin).
2-4ae     adjarian, adzhar, ajarian, acar, acharian, adzar, @ aǯaruli     Adjaria [325k]; ▶ Turkey: along the Black Sea coast from Atvin to Giresun, Ordu, Samsun, Sinop; Amasya, Tokat; ▶▶ Sakarya, Bursa, Kocaeli ils.
2-4af     macahel, camili, west shavshet     Turkey (N. Artvin il): Maçahel (Camili) valley (5 villages). Close to Klarjian.
2-4b Klarjian, klardzhi, klardzhian; (when speaking about the previous time) tao-klarjian @ k'larǯuli Turkey [40k]. Formerly was spoken in the whole Artvin and in north Erzurum ils. Dialects are not mutually intelligible.
2-4ba     imerkhevian, imerhev, north shavshet @ imerxevuri # imer-hevi = "west valley"     NE. Artvin il: Berta upper valley (Meydancık region). It is said they are from Kakheti and thus it can be a dialect of Kakhian.
2-4bb     klarjian proper, lower choruh, borçka     NC. Artvin il: Çoruh lower basin: Borçka; Murgul (Göktaş) valley.
2-4bc     parhali, barhal     W. Artvin il: Barhal upper valley (3 villages).
2-4bd     tao, oltu     Was spoken up to 18th c. in Tao region (NE. Erzurum il). Map: #0.
2-4c Georgian proper, kartlian-kaxi, Georgia; Russia
2-4ca     modern literary georgian     & Mxedruli-xeli ((=soldier's hand), Saero (="civil"), Georgian civil) script. Kartlian model.
2-4cb     kartlian, kartli, central georgian; @ kartluri     C. Georgia: Kura (Mtkvari) middle basin ("Kartli").
2-4cba     lower aragvian; @ aragvikvemouri     Mtiul-Aragvi, Pshav-Aragvi lower valleys. Influenced by Mtiulian-Pshavian Spoken as L2 or L1 by migrants from Mtiuleti and Pshaveti.
2-4cbb     borjomian; @ borǯomuri     Borjomi gorge: Borjomi, Xashuri Influenced by Imerian. Spoken by descendants of migrants from Imereti in 19th century.
2-4cbc     judeo-georgian; @ kivruli; ethnonyms: ebraeli     Not a separate language but a jargon used by Georgian Jews in trading. Includes many roots borrowed from Hebrew. First language of Georgian jews is Georgian. Map: #0.
2-4cc     kakhian, kaxi, kakhetian, kakh; @ k'axuri     E. Georgia (Kakheti).
2-4cca     tianet; @ tianetuli     Iori upper valley: near Sion reservoir. Influenced by Khevsurian, Mtiulian-Pshavian. Spoken as L2 or L1 by migrants from Khevsureti, Mtiuleti and Pshaveti.
2-4cd     meskhian, mesxet, mesx, meskhetin @ mesxuri     S. Georgia: Akhaltsikhis rayon. ("Samtskxe").
2-4ce     javakhian, javax, dzhavakh, jav @ ǯavaxuri     S. Georgia: Akhalk'alak'is rayon.
2-4d Ingilo-Fereidan; Azerbaijan; Iran.
2-4da     ingilo, ingiloian; @ ingilouri     NE. Azerbaijan: Alazani valley ("Saingilo"). Bilingual in Azerbaijani.
2-4daa     aliabad; @ aliabaduri     Zaqatal rayon: Aliabad, Mosul. Muslim.
2-4dab     kaki, kakh; @ kakuri     Qəxi rayon: Qaxingilo, Alibeyli . Orthodox Christian.
2-4db     fereidan, ferejdan, fereydan, iranian georgian, phereidanian @ pereidnuli     Iran: 14 villages in Fars, Gilan, Mazanderan provinces. Displaced in 17th century from E. Georgia (Kakheti, Saingilo). Map: #0.
2-4e Mtiulian-Pshavian; aragvian, piedmont georgian NE. Georgia: C. Dushet'is rayon.
2-4ea     mtiulian, mtiul, mtiul-gudamkar @ mtiuluri     Aragvi basin.
2-4eb     pshavian, pshav; (Bats) shov; @ pšauri; ethnonyms: pšaveli     Aragvi-Pshaveli & upper Iori basins; partly migrated to Kakheti.
2-4f Pkhovian, pxov; (Bats) pxev; @ pxouri NE. Georgia; Russia.
2-4fa     mokhevian, moxev, mokhe @ moxeuri     upper Terek basin: Georgia (Qazbegis rayon), Russia (SE. Northern Ossetia: Chmi).
2-4fb     khevsurian, xevsur @ xevsuruli     N. Dushet'is rayon; partly migrated to Kakheti.
2-4fc     tushian, tush, tushin; @ tušuri     N. Akhmetas rayon ("Mountain Tusheti"): only three villages remained; the rest migrated to the lower Kakheti (Kvemo-Kedi).
2-4fca     chagma     Only in lowlands now (Zemo-Alvani, Kvemo-Alvani).
2-4fcb     gomecari  
2-4fcc     pirikiti  
2-4fcd     tsova-tush georgian @ c'ova-tušuri     Used as L2 by speakers of Bats. Zemo-Alvani.
     
2-D SVAN, north kartvelian, svanic, svanetian, (Grg) svanuri ena; ; ethnonyms: wan-r, svaneli; @ lunu nin Georgia [~80k in 1999, ~100k in 2002]. Maps: #5,14,15.
2-5 balian, bal, upper svan NW. Georgia: Mestiis rayon [17,600]; Abkhazia.
2-5a Lower Bal, transbalian; (Grg) balskvemouri; , W. & C. Mestiis rayon: (middle-)upper Inguri basin; NE. Abkhazia: upper Kodori basin.
2-5aa     etseri @ ecer Etseri village.
2-5ab     chubekhevi
2-5ac     lakhamula @ laxməl
2-5ad     pari @ pär Nakra valley.
2-5ae     tskhumari @ cxəmar
2-5af     becho, bechoy @ bečwi Dolra valley.
2-5b Upper Bal, cisbalian; (Grg) balszemouri; , - E. Mestiis rayon: uppermost Inguri basin; NE. Abkhazia: upper & middle Kodori basin.
2-5ba     latali @ latli  
2-5bb     lenjeri, mestia-lenjeri @ lenǯär Mestia and environs.
2-5bc     mulakhi @ məläx Nenskra river.
2-5bd     ipari @ ipär
2-5be     kala @ kal Nakra valley.
2-5bf     ushguli @ ušgul
2-6 lower svan, NW.Georgia: Lentekhis rayon [13,500] (upper Tskhenistskali basin).
2-6a Lentekh, lentekhian, lentex; (Grg) lent'exuri; @ leltxa W. Lentekhis rayon.
2-6aa     bavari-khacheshi @ bavari-xäčeš upper Kheledula valley.
2-6ab     lentekh proper
2-6ac     khopuri @ qopir Qopuri valley.
2-6b Choluri; (Grg) čoluruli; ; @ čoluri C. Lentekhis rayon.
2-6ba     tekal @ tekal
2-6bb     sakdari, sakdari-chvelieri @ saqdari- čvelieri Sakdari village. Mixed of Choluri & Lentekh.
2-6bc     panag @ panagi
2-6c Lashkh, lashkhian, lashx; (Grg) lašxuri; , S. & E. Lentekhis rayon.
2-6ca     kheledi @ qeled lower Qeledula river.
2-6cb     rtskhmeluri @ rcxmeluri Rtskhmeluri
2-6cc     upper lashkh uppermost Tskhenistskali valley.
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Created on January, 16, 2003 Last updated on Nov, 19, 2010 18:45