United Nations headquarters to host presentation of Georgian author Shota Rustaveli stamp
12 April, 2018
United Nations headquarters to host presentation of Georgian author Shota Rustaveli stamp
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the declaration of the Democratic Republic of Georgia, and there are many interesting events planned to mark this great holiday which has a historic importance for the whole country.

The Independence Day of Georgia is observed on May 26th, the day when Georgia gained back its independence from the Russian Empire that it has lost in 1801.

More than 100 cultural events are planned to be held
in different parts of the world in relation to the 100th anniversary of declaring Democratic Republic of Georgia. The agenda and specifics will be provided to the population in detail.
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Presentation of renowned Georgian poet Shota Rustaveli stamp will be held at United Nations head office

Presentation of renowned Georgian poet Shota Rustaveli stamp will be held at United Nations head office, where the 100th anniversary of the Democratic Republic of Georgia will be celebrated, Georgian Foreign Minister Mikheil Janelidze stated while talking about a series of events planned to mark the 100th anniversary from the creation of the Democratic Republic of Georgia in 1918.
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The presentation will take place next month in New York, at the headquarters of the UN

Georgia became the 179th member of the United Nations on July 31, 1992, thereby accepting the values and principles of the organization.

As reported the presentation will take place next month in New York, at the headquarters of the UN.

He also added that the memorable date for Georgia will be marked by international organizations, in the headquarters of United Nations and the Council of Europe as well.

“We will celebrate the 100th anniversary from the creation of Democratic Republic of Georgia through important festive events. Namely, the head office of United Nations will host the presentation of Georgian medieval poet Shota Rustaveli stamp and festive event. UNESCO will host the concerts by famous Georgian pianist, UNESCO Peace Ambassador and pianist Eliso Bolkvadze and Georgian folk group Basiani.

Strasbourg will also host quitean important event. On May 26 the Council of Europe in Strasbourg will host an event dedicated to famous Georgian scientist Mikheil Muskheli (1903-1964), who was a professor of Strasbourg University, and one of the pioneers among the scientists who authored the idea of aUnited Europe,” stated the Foreign Minister.
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Famous Georgian scientist Mikheil Muskheli. Photo courtesy National Library of Georgia

According to him, unfortunately, there was lack of information about the Georgian scientist’s work, however, now with the efforts of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs the scientific works of Mikheil Muskheli, his private archives and his tomb in Strasbourg were found.

As Mikheil Janleidze stated, the Georgian estate in Leuville, France also occupies quite an important place among the list of the planned events. The Georgian estate in Leuville, France will host various cultural and scientific events in June. Moreover, the French-Georgian memorial center - the Leuville Georgian Academy - will be established.
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Georgian estate in Leuville, France

It is worth mentioning that the Georgian Foreign Ministry also marks 100th anniversary this year. As Mikheil Janelidze said, on May 26, they plan to open Georgia’s diplomatic museum as well.

“We will present interesting exhibitions from Georgia’s diplomatic history to the public,” Janelidze said.

Greatest Georgian medieval author Shota Rustaveli, famous for his epic poem The Knight in the Panther's Skin, which is considered to be a Georgian national epic poem, is thought to have lived around 1160/65.
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Shota Rustaveli is considered to be the preeminent poet of the Georgian Golden Age

He is considered to be the preeminent poet of the Georgian Golden Age (also known as Georgian renaissance) and one of the greatest contributors to Georgian literature. He is also the namesake of the coveted Shota Rustaveli State Prize, the highest honor a Georgian artist or writer can achieve.
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His epic poem The Knight in the Panther's Skin represents the anthem of true love, friendship, and courage

His epic poem The Knight in the Panther's Skin, which represents the anthem of true love, friendship, and courage, has been translated into many languages. It was first printed in 1712 in the Georgian capital Tbilisi. The manuscripts of The Knight in the Panther's Skin occupy an important place among the works produced in Georgia. The book was accompanied by comments and it was the first intention to scientifically study the epic poem that turned out as a success.
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The Knight in the Panther's Skin

The first English prosaic translation of The Knight in the Panther's Skin was made by Marjory Wardrop, an English scholar and translator of Georgian literature. The English translation of the poem was published by his brother Oliver Wardrop in London, 1912.

After her death, Sir Oliver created the Marjory Wardrop Fund at Oxford University "for the encouragement of the study of the language, literature, and history of Georgia, in Transcaucasia."
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Marjory Wardrop in Georgian dress

Two folios of the text of the Knight in the Panther's Skin, dating from the 16th century, are kept in the Institute of Manuscripts of Georgia in Tbilisi together with some extracts from the poem dating back to the 14th century. All other copies of the poem date from the 17th century.

Mihály Zichy, a 19th-century Hungarian painter, rose to the rank of "national painter" in Georgia as he produced the classic illustrations that have been frequently used in editions of Rustaveli's poetry. There are a monumnet and a street that commemorate Zichy's contribution to Georgia.
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A monumnet of Mihály Zichy in Tbilisi, at Alexander’s Park

It is also noteworthy that in 2011, Basin on Mercury was named after Shota Rustaveli by NASA. As NASA reported, “the basin had a smooth, filled floor with little weathering and a peak-ring structure.”
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Illustration of The Knight in the Panther's Skin by Mihály Zichy

The Democratic Republic of Georgia (DRG) existed from May 1918 to February 1921 and was the first modern establishment of a Republic of Georgia.

The DRG was created after the collapse of the Russian Empire that began with the Russian Revolution of 1917. The republic's capital was Tbilisi, and its state language was Georgian. Proclaimed on May 26, 1918, on the break-up of the Transcaucasian Federation, it was led by the Georgian Social Democratic Party (also known as the Georgian Menshevik Party).
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National Council meeting, May26, 1918

On May 26 of 1918, exactly at 5:10am, the National Council of Georgia (that was renamed into the Parliament of Georgia) adopted the Act of Independence that gave birth to the Democratic Republic of Georgia. Unfortunately, the victory and the taste of freedom turned out to be quite short.
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The members of the government of Democratic Republic of Georgia

Facing permanent internal and external problems, the young state was unable to withstand invasion by the Russian SFSR Red Armies and was occupied in 1921 and turned into a Soviet republic. Soviet forces took the Georgian capital Tbilisi after heavy fighting and declared the Georgian Soviet Socialist Republic on 25 February 1921.
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Russian Red Army in Tbilisi. 21 February, 1921

Only on April 9, 1991 Georgia managed to free itself again from the Russian occupation, yet 20 percent of its land, Abkhazia and Tskhinvali (so called South Ossetia) still remain in Russia’s hands.

Related stories:

Georgia marks Independence Referendum Day – 27 years ago country gained back its sovereignty

29 years after April 9 massacre – Georgians’ struggle for gaining back independence from USSR

Independence Day – The birth of Democratic Republic of Georgia

Georgian poet Shota Rustaveli and a British model – Intriguing look-alikes

Basin on Mercury named after Georgian poet by NASA

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