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Bagrati Cathedral and Gelati Monastery
Site number:
Type of site: Heritage in danger
Date: 10-17 Centuries
Date of Inscription: 1994
Location: Eurasia, Georgia, Region of Imereti, City of Kutaisi
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Description: The Bagrati Cathedral’s (named after Bagrat III, united Georgia’s first king) construction began in the late 10th century and was completed in the early years of the 11th century. Despite its partial destruction by the Turks in 1691, its ruins have managed to stay intact in the centre of Kutaisi. With its main buildings dating to the 12th and 17th centuries, the Gelati Monastery is a well-preserved complex of magnificent mosaics and wall paintings. Both the cathedral and the monastery symbolize the flowering of Georgia’s medieval architecture. --WHMNet paraphrase from the description at WHC Site, where additional information is available.
  The Cathedral of the Dormition, or the Kutaisi Cathedral, more commonly known as Bagrati Cathedral (Georgian: ბაგრატი; ბაგრატის ტაძარი, or Bagratis tadzari), is the 11th-century cathedral church in the city of Kutaisi, the region of Imereti, Georgia. The cathedral, now in ruins, has gone down as a masterpiece in the history of medieval Georgian architecture. A distinct landmark in the scenery of central Kutaisi, the cathedral rests upon the top of Uk’imerioni Hill. It was built in the early years of the 11th century, during the reign of King Bagrat III due to which it was called "Bagrati" Cathedral, i.e., Bagrat’s cathedral. An inscription on the north wall reveals that the floor was laid in "chronicon 223", i.e., 1003. In 1692, it was devastated in an explosion by the Ottoman troops, which had invaded the Kingdom of Imereti. The incident caused the cupola and ceiling to collapse leaving the cathedral in its present state. The conservation and restoration works, as well as archaeological studies, which began in 1952, are still underway. In 1994, the Bagrati Cathedral, together with the Gelati Monastery, was included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site list as a single entity. In 2001, the cathedral was restored to the Georgian Orthodox Church. It is now of limited use for worship services, but attracts many pilgrims and tourists. It is also frequently used as a symbol of the whole city of Kutaisi, being one of its main tourist attractions. --Wikipedia. Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.
Reference: 1. UNESCO World Heritage Center, Site Page.
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