Samtsevrisi fortress

Fortress of Samtsevrisi (Region of Shida Kartli)

The fortress complex of Samtsevrisi (Georg. სამწევრისის ციხე) is located on a mountain hill in the basin of the Mtkvari River (Georg. მტკვარი), near the village of Samtsevrisi (Municipality of Kareli). The strategically important fortress controlled the valleys of the Dzama (Georg. ძამა) and Mtkvari rivers. The complex with an impressive area, surrounded by a high wall, could accommodate the population of the entire valley. It was intended for a long siege, as indicated by the many large living areas  and the abundance of buildings for domestic use. The first building of the complex, a tower of the original form, belongs to the early feudal period. Later, the construction of the complex took on a large-scale character. The grandeur of the once colossal buildings is still felt in the ruins of the feudal palace and other buildings. Over time, everything was destroyed in such a way that it is impossible to fully determine the original appearance of the complex.

In the last period of its existence, the defense complex was divided into two parts. The northern side is almost flush with the ground, the southern one is comparatively better. Later, a church, residential and outbuildings, and a cellar with jugs were built on the territory of the complex. The surviving massive wall of the three-story palace was part of a large fence. In the western part of the castle, four-meter walls with windows and battle elements have been preserved. Little is known about the history of this large-scale ensemble. The ruins of buildings are multi-layered and testify to several stages of construction carried out over a long period of time. It is known that at the beginning of the late feudal period there was a residence of the Fanaskerteli-Tsitsishvili (Georg. ფანასკერტელი-ციციშვილი) family.


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