Thursday, December 10, 2015

Faces of Georgia

What does a "Georgian" person look like?

Dark and swarthy, bearded? Slim and blonde? Turquoise eyes and black hair? A low, heavy brow and broad shoulders? Ginger?

Yes.

The thing is, "Georgian" as an ethnic group is a rather newly accepted idea. For most of Georgia's history, really until Russians came in and tried to simplify things for bureaucratic purposes, Georgians from different parts of the country were more separated (due to undeveloped transportation systems and mountainous terrain), and thus ethnic heritages remained distinct.

This can be kind of a touchy subject, as the idea of these sub-Georgian ethnicities is a big part of the conflicts in South Ossetia and Abkhazia (remember the Russian-Georgian War of August 2008? Yeah, that.)

Overall, Georgians tend to know their family's ethnic background, but don't regularly identify with it or discriminate between the ethnic groups. Sometimes last names or certain physical features can give away ethnic origin, but not always. In my unscientific pursuit of science, I have

1) Found this little chart of sub-Georgian ethnic groups

2) Conducted informal interviews with a random-ish sample of Georgians.


Below are my findings:

NameName in GeorgianGeographical regionDialect or Language
Imeretiansიმერელი imereliImeretiImeretian dialect
Kartliansქართლელი kartleliKartliKartlian dialect
Megreliansმეგრელი megreliSamegreloMegrelian language
Svansსვანი svaniSvanetiSvan language
Guriansგურული guruliGuriaGurian dialect
Adjariansაჭარელი achareliAdjaraAdjarian dialect
Meskhetiansმესხი meskhiMeskheti (Samtskhe)Meskhian dialect
Lechkhumiansლეჩხუმელი lechkhumeliLechkhumiLechkhumian dialect
Rachiansრაჭველი rachveliRachaRachian dialect
Kakhetiansკახელი kakheliKakhetiKakhetian dialect
Khevsuriansხევსური khevsuriKhevsuretiKhevsurian dialect
Tushsთუში tushiTushetiTushetian dialect
Pshaviansფშაველი pshaveliPshaviPshavian dialect
Mokheviansმოხევე mokheveKheviMokhevian dialect
Javakhiansჯავახი javakhiJavakhetiJavakhian dialect
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Georgians#Geographic_subdivisions_and_subethnic_groups

Within these groups, there are further subdivisions that are noted if they appear in my field study.

I recorded the participant's name, their eye/hair color (some of the pictures aren't that clear, but the text is correct), and their ethnic region of origin.
One glaring oversight from the study is Mokheve people...these mountain people are one of the more "pure" ethnic lineages, and I have so many Mokheve friends that it would have been easy to get photos, I just forgot... It's a real shame too because there are some gorgeous people up there. I promise I'll update! Hopefully I'll get out to Svaneti soon too and sample them.

One last thing! Notice that within this sampling of only 21 people, 5 of them have widow's peaks! I know that a widow's peak is genetic, and I think it's common within the entire nation of Georgians.  

Hopefully this project page will be regularly updated as I gather more data! You know, for science  ;) 


Tornike.
Brown eyes, brown hair.
Guria.

Irakli.
Light blue eyes, red hair and gingy complexion.
Guria.

(claims the red hair comes from having one Russian grandmother)

Tornike.
Brown eyes, sandy brown hair.
Kartli.
Tornike.
Green-grey eyes, brown hair.
Kartli.

Akhsartag.
Dark brown eyes, black hair.
South Ossetia (not technically Georgian).


 Nino.
Brown eyes, light brown hair.
Imereti.

Giorgi.
Brown eyes, brown hair.
Imereti.
Tatia.
Brown eyes, brown hair.
Imereti.
Giorgi.
Hazel eyes, black hair.
Imereti.
Zurab.
Light blue eyes, light brown hair.
Imereti, Kakheti.


Nika.
Light brown eyes, red-brown hair, freckles.
Racha.

Lasha.
Brown eyes, brown hair.
Racha.
Dato(?)
Brown eyes, dark brown hair.
Borjomi
Zura.
Grey-green eyes, light brown hair.
Samegrelo.


Parnavaz.
Brown eyes, brown hair.
Kakheti.
Nina.
Green/hazel eyes, brown hair.
Kakheti
Tornike.
Pale blue eyes, light brown hair.
Kakheti.
Goga.
Dark brown eyes, brown hair.
Kakheti.
Giorgi.
Dark brown eyes, dark brown hair.
Kakheti.
Emzari.
Pale blue eyes, light brown hair.
Kakheti.
Vako.
Blue eyes, red-brown hair.
Lechkhumi.
Bonus!
Brown eyes, dark brown hair.
Forgot to write down his name or heritage but he works at my
favorite wine shop in Tbilisi, so I'm sure I'll see him again!

For more on Georgian men specifically, check out my outrageous expose...


Can't get enough of these gorgeous people? 
This video showcases supposedly the most beautiful Georgian men...
and this video the most beautiful Georgian women...


1 comment:

  1. Everybody in the city know that I'm a sexy MFer..and somehow you managed to take an ugly picture of me..

    ReplyDelete