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Anchiskhati Church

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Anchiskhati Church

There are many historical memorials in Tbilisi, the age of which has surpassed a thousand years, but the most ancient is considered Anchiskhati - Church of the Nativity of the Virgin Mary.

According to studies, it was constructed in the first half of the VI century by the order of King Dachi. The name Anchiskhati obtained in the XVII century, thanks to the icons of the city Anchi (Turkey), once belonged to the Georgian kings. The name of the church is translated as "icon of Anchi”. 

In the temple Anchiskhati one can see the icon of the XIX century and the altarpiece, created in 1683. And the icon, which gave the name of this church, for more than hundred years is kept in the Tbilisi Museum of Art. 

In its architecture, the church is the basilica, which also shows the age of construction - the early Christian churches were built exactly in the form of a basilica. For centuries Anchiskhati was ruined and restored again. Important changes in the structure happened in the XV-XVII centuries, when Georgia was fighting with the Turks and Persians. And in 1675 the double-deck campanile was constructed in the Persian style, which was additional to the oldest church in Tbilisi

At the end of XIX century the design of Anchiskhati was greatly changed, there was added another set. During the Soviet period the church was turned into a museum then it housed the art workshop. In the 1960's there was a large-scale renovation of the temple, which has returned the face of the XVII century. In 1989, it again became an operating temple of the Georgian Orthodox Church.

 

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