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Lechkhumi

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Lechkhumi

Lechkhumi
ლეჩხუმი
Historical Region

Map highlighting the historical region of Lechkhumi in Georgia
Country Georgia
Mkhare Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti
Capital Tsageri
Area
 • Total 765 km2 (295 sq mi)
Population
 • Total 17,000
 • Density 22/km2 (58/sq mi)

Lechkhumi (Rioni and Tskhenistskali and also the Lajanuri river valley. Now part of the Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti region, it corresponds roughly to the present day Tsageri district as well as parts of districts of Tsq'altubo and Ambrolauri. It is bordered by Mingrelia to the west, Svaneti to the north, Racha to the east, and Imereti to the south.

The area has been inhabited since the Bejan Chikovani became Prince of Mingrelia and assumed the dynastic name of Dadiani. Thus, these two western Georgian polities united under the princes of Mingrelia.

King Solomon II of Imereti (1792-1810) attempted on several occasions, though unsuccessfully, to bring the area back under the Imeretian rule. The Russian Empire intervened on Mingrelian side that resulted in the fall of Solomon's kingdom and incorporation of Mingrelia into the Tsarist empire as an autonomous entity. In 1857, the Russian authorities abolished the Principality of Mingrelia and Lechkhumi became a part of Kutais Guberniya. Together with the neighbouring region Svaneti, it formed the Lechkhumi Mazra from 1867 to 1930, when the Tsageri Rayon was created.

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