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Tamar of Georgia - The female monarch of Georgia

18 Jan 2021  Mon

Queen Tamar, also known as Tamar the Great ruled Georgia from 1184 to 1213, leading to the summit 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. Here we look at a brief history of her rule, accomplishments, and diplomacy.

Relying on powerful military elite, Tamar was able to build on the successes of her predecessors to consolidate an empire which dominated the Caucasus until its collapse under the Mongol attacks within two decades after Tamar's death.

Tamar's association with the period of political and military successes and cultural achievements, combined with her role as a female ruler, has led to her idealization in Georgian arts and historical memory. She remains an important symbol in Georgian popular culture.

Despite Georgia's Byzantine-leaning culture, the country's intimate trade connections with the Middle East is evidenced on contemporary Georgian coinage, whose legends were composed in Georgian and Arabic. A series of coins minted in circa 1200 in the name of Queen Tamar depicted a local variant of the Byzantine obverse and an Arabic inscription on the reverse proclaiming Tamar as the "Champion of the Messiah".

Depicted here is a copper coin with Georgian and Arabic inscriptions featuring Tamar's monogram (1200).

Image Source: Wikipedia.org

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