December 4, 2013
American Orthodox Institute
Tbilisi Cathedral in the Republic of Georgia
A friend sent a photo of the Holy Trinity Cathedral recently built in the Republic of Georgia. It is beautiful. I had no idea it even existed. Flickr has some great shots.
Sameba (Trinity) Cathedral was finished in 2007 or 8. I remember seeing the cross to be mounted atop the conical dome, lying in the yard outside one of the other, ancient churches in the old part of Tbilisi. It was a big as a bus, made of welded steel by a sculptor. Sameba is the largest building in the Caucasus and taller than Christ the Savior cathedral in Moscow (and a darn sight prettier!). Like Spasi Sobor, it is symbolic of the church’s rebirth and dominates the skyline. Tbilisi is located at the convergence of several steep massifs at the Mtkvari River and is a very steeply-inclined town for the most part, making for great views. The new cathedral is perched on a large plaza with a whole complex of new structures replacing the old Patriarchate complex across the river near Sioni cathedral. Ironically, the neighborhood of the new cathedral, Avlabari, is mostly Armenian. Geogian and Armenian church architecture is similar and their churches only resemble each other, unmistakably Caucasian.
[A great book about Georgian church architecture and other arts is The Arts of Ancient Georgia by R. Mepisashavili & V. Tsintsadze with a fwd by David Lang(Thames & Hudson, 1977 &1979) Library of Congres Catalog Card # 78-64924
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