photography date: 11.08.2005  
  (except specified photos)


Samshvilde settlement sprang up in the IV-III centuries B.C. The first mentionings date from the time of Georgian king Parnavaz (III century B.C.)
There're extant constructions of different epochs, including the most ancient, on the relatively small territory.
I've taken the scheme of the site from website

  1 - ponds; 2 - hall-church; 3 - Zion of Samshvilde; 4 - three-naved basilica;  
  5 - palatial building; 6 - multi-layer fortress; 7,10 - ruins of two-storeyed palaces; 11 - tetralit;  
  12 - hall-church; 13 - hall-church of Assumption of the Mother (the middle of XI century)  
  14, 15 - military wall with gates;  

It's about an hour's walk from Tetri Tskaro to the site of Samshvilde ancient settlement.
The road goes through a big village of the same name on the left bank of the Chivchavi river, then goes down to an ancient bridge.

The bridge over rhe river Chivchavi (the photo was made on July 7, 2011).

A view from the bridge.

There're streets of the ancient city after the wall.

The horse-shaped headstone was placed on the right of the central street in the end of the Middle Ages (the photo of May 8, 2008).

There're extant ruins of the palace walls along the road.

There're the walls of the fortress of six metres thick before us.

Such walls and the impassable canyon made the main part of Samshvilde almost unassailable.

General view on the most ancient part of Samshvilde. There're only ruins of Zion and the building of basilica raising above the verdure.
(all the photos below were made on May 8, 2008)


The inner part of the basilica.

Vandals of different times have left their traces on the ruins of a hall-church built in XII century.
(the photo of August 11, 2005)

(all the photos below were made on May 8, 2008)

That's what Zion had looked like before Turks detonated it in XVI century.

A wall of Zion.

From this inscription, made with ancient Georgian print, we managed to ascertain the date of building Zion.
It was built from 759 to 777.

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