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Racha

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Title: Racha  
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Subject: Kingdom of Abkhazia, History of Georgia (country), Abkhazia, Tsulukidze (family), Racha
Collection: Former Provinces of Georgia (Country), Historical Regions of Georgia (Country), Racha
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Racha

Racha
რაჭა
Historical Region

Map highlighting the historical region of Racha in Georgia
Country  Georgia
Mkhare Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti
Capital Oni
Area
 • Total 2,854 km2 (1,102 sq mi)
Population
 • Total 25,000
 • Density 8.8/km2 (23/sq mi)

Racha (also Račha, Oni and Ambrolauri.

Racha occupies 2,854 km2 in the north-eastern corner of western Georgia. Spurs of the Greater Caucasus crest separates Racha from the Georgian historical regions of Shida Kartli region.

History

An old fortress in Racha in the 19th century.

Racha had been part of Bagrat III. Descendants of Rati and his son Kakhaber, eponymous father of Racha’s ruling dynasty of Kakhaberisdze, governed the province until 1278. In 1278 King David VI Narin abolished the duchy during his war against the Mongols. In the mid-14th century, the duchy was restored under the rule of the Charelidze family.

The next dynasty of Chkhetidze governed Racha from 1465 to 1769. Vassals of the King of Imereti, they revolted several times against the royal power. The 1678-1679 civil war resulted in the most serious consequences. In this war, Duke Shoshita II of Racha (1661-1684) supported Prince Archil, a rival of the pro-Ottoman Imeretian king Bagrat IV. On the defeat of Archil, Racha was overrun and plundered by an Ottoman punitive force. Under Rostom (1749-1769), the duchy became virtually independent from Imereti. However, towards the end of 1769, King Solomon I of Imereti managed to arrest Rostom and to abolish the duchy. In 1784, King David II of Imereti revived the duchy and gave it to his nephew Anton. Local opposition attempted to use an Ottoman force to take control of Racha, but the victory of King David at Skhvava (January 26, 1786) temporarily secured his dominance in the area. In 1789, the next Imeretian king Solomon II finally abolished the duchy and subordinated the province directly to the royal administration.

Notable people

See also


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