Legendary Georgian leader: Who is Queen Tamar?

St. Tamara, Queen of Georgia, was the only child of King George III. After her father died in 1184, she became queen at the age of 24. Despite his young age, she governed her country so well that her reign was known as Georgia's "Golden Age".

By David Foster Published on 9 Şubat 2024 : 23:47.
Legendary Georgian leader: Who is Queen Tamar?

When Tamar became queen, after suppressing the turmoil in the country and establishing order, she started to attach importance to foreign relations and fought fearlessly against the enemy by strengthening her army in the best way possible.

She saw herself as "the parent of orphans and the protector of widows." She made great efforts for Christianity and built numerous churches and monasteries in his country. She was loved so much by her people that they glorified her by mentioning her in legends and songs. Thanks to their queen, their kingdom reached the peak of its power and Georgia reached the largest borders in its history. St. Tamara, Queen of Georgia, passed away from her earthly kingdom to the heavenly one in 1212.

Who is Queen Tamar?

Queen Tamar (Queen Tamara); She is the name that ruled the Kingdom of Georgia between 1184 and 1213. (b. 1166, Mtskheta d. 18 January 1213 Agarani Fortress)

Her reign is known as the Golden Age of Georgia. She was called the “king of kings” and “queen of queens”. She comes from the Bagrationi dynasty.

Tamar the Great (c. 1160 – 18 January 1213) reigned as the Queen of Georgia from 1184 to 1213, presiding over the apex of the Georgian Golden Age. A member of the Bagrationi dynasty, her position as the first woman to rule Georgia in her own right was emphasized by the title mepe ("king"), afforded to Tamar in the medieval Georgian sources.

The reign of Queen Tamara (1184-1213), when the Georgian Kingdom reached its largest borders, witnessed very important military and political developments in the Kingdom of Georgia, both internally and externally.

Queen Tamara is the child of Georgian King Giorgi (George) III (1156-1184) and Burduhan, the daughter of the Ossetian King. George III, who ruled the Georgian Kingdom for a long time and achieved very important successes during this time, placed his daughter Tamara on the throne and declared her heir in 1178, with the approval of all the notables of the state. Giorgi's purpose in this was to prevent throne fights that might occur after him. Although Tamara was a shareholder of the Georgian throne during this period, she did not interfere in state affairs, and her father Giorgi ruled the country alone.

After the death of George III in 1184, Tamara came to the capital Tbilisi from Isan Castle near Tbilisi, and despite all the opposing voices against her, she sat on the throne and became the sole owner of the Georgian throne.

Queen Tamara, who began to rule the state alone after the death of Giorgi III, was first faced with the rebellion of the aristocrats, who took advantage of her inexperience and youth and began to look for ways to seize the power and civil servants they previously held. As a result of these rebellions, Queen Tamara had to dismiss two of her most loyal men, the Georgian army Amirspasa (Commander-in-Chief) Kubasar and Msahurtukhutsesi (Palace Steward and Palace Economy Officer) Apridoni and confiscated some of their properties.

After a while, Tamara faced the rebellion of Kutlu Arslan, of Kipchak origin, who served as Mechurchletukhutsesi (Financial Affairs and Finance Officer) and demanded that a building called Karavi be established next to the palace and a parliament to discuss state affairs. Queen Tamara, who rejected this offer, which would neutralize her and turn her into a puppet, had Kutlu Arslan, who made the offer, imprisoned. After Kutlu Arslan was imprisoned, his supporters armed themselves and stood at the door of the Georgian palace, demanding his release from the Queen. However, as a result of the negotiations between the two parties, the problem was resolved and it was decided to establish an advisory council called Tanadgoma, where state affairs would be discussed and decided.

Another important event that took place during this period was the issue of Queen Tamara's marriage. This time, the nobles were trying to attack the Queen over this issue and stated that the Queen still did not have an heir to replace her and that they needed a leader who could manage them in war. In reality, their aim was to protect their position by making someone king in line with their own interests. Unable to withstand these pressures any longer, the Georgian Queen married Yuri Bogolubsky, son of Suzdal Prince Andre, who was deemed suitable for her by some nobles, including Tiflis Emir Abu'l-Hasan (Abulasan), in 1185.

After Queen Tamara solved the problems she encountered in this way and gained full authority in the management of her country, she completely turned her attention to foreign policy. The Georgian Queen, who started to pursue an aggressive foreign policy from this period onwards, greatly expanded the borders of her country.

Queen Tamara, who first had to deal with internal dissidents and rebellions, resolved these problems in a short time and then turned her attention to foreign policy and achieved many military successes. The first of these victories was the Battle of Shamkur. In the war that took place in 1195, Georgians defeated a large Muslim coalition.

However, the greatest victory gained during this period was the Battle of Pasinler in 1202. This war is very important not only for Georgians but also for the whole Christian world. After that, Georgia became one of the biggest powers in the South Caucasus.

Another important event of the Tamara period was the establishment of the Greek State of Trebizond in the Black Sea in 1204 with the help of Georgian soldiers. Georgians later invaded Azerbaijan and captured many cities in the region. Thus, at the beginning of the 13th century, Georgians gained superiority on the southeastern borders and ensured the security of their country in the southeast and southwest. The Georgian Kingdom reached the peak of its political and military power during this period. For this reason, the Tamara era is today called the Golden Age.

Towards the end of the Tamara period, some people in the north of the Caucasus, who had always accepted the superiority of the Georgians, rebelled against the Georgians. Thereupon, Queen Tamara took action and sent an army against them. The army, which raided the region for three months under the leadership of Ivane Mkhargrdzelidze, brought the rebellious people to their knees. He made a peace agreement with the rebels in exchange for captives and taxes. Thus, Georgians gained control over the Caucasian peoples and made them their vassals.

During this period, Ossetians, Kipchaks, Chechen-Ingush, and Avars in the North Caucasus became closely affiliated with the Georgians. Thus, full authority was established in the north of the Caucasus.

After the death of her husband David Soslan in 1207, Queen Tamara appointed her son Giorgi as her assistant.


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