Georgian Surnames

Ilia Chavchavadze


Prince Ilia G. Chavchavadze (Saint Ilia the Righteous) was the creator of new Georgian literature, a famous public benefactor, a jurist, and a leader of the Georgia's National-liberation movement in 1861-1907.

He was born on October 27,1837, in the village Kvareli (East Georgia), where now is nis house-museum. Graduated from Tbilisi Classical Gimnasium, then entered and graduated from faculty of law of the Peterburg University.

He was the author of many outstanding Georgian literary works ("The Hermit", "The Ghost", "Is a Human a Man?!", "The Othar's Widow", "The Robber Kako", etc.) and important journalistic papers. Since 1863 Ilia Chavchavadze was founder and editor-in-chief of Georgian public and political periodicals "Sakartvelos Moambe" (1863-1877) and "Iveria" (1877-1905). He was also founder and chairman of many public, cultural and educational organizations ("The Society on the Dissemination of Literacy Among Georgians", "The Bank of the Nobility", "The Dramatic Society", "The Historical-Ethnographical Society of Georgia", etc.). He was also a translator of British literature. His main literary works were translated and published in French, English, German, Polish, Ukrainian, Belorussian, Russian and other languages.

In 1906-1907 he was a member of the State Council (Gosudarstvennaya Duma) of the Russian empire.

Ilia Chavchavadze was a member of: the Caucasian Committee of the Geographical Society of Russia, the Society of Ethnography and Anthropology of the Moscow University, the Society of Orientalists of Russia, the Anglo-Russian Literary Society (London), etc.

On August 30, 1907 Ilia Chavchavadze was assassinated by Georgian social-democrats.

In 1987 Ilia Chavchavadze was Sainted by the Georgian Orthodox and Apostolic Church.