Georgii Vasilevich Tsereteli

Tsereteli, Georgii Vasil’evich


Born Oct. 8 (21), 1904, in the city of Tianeti; died Sept. 9, 1973, in Tbilisi. Soviet Orientalist, Semitist, and specialist in Georgian studies. Academician of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR (1968) and the Academy of Sciences of the Georgian SSR (1946).

A student of P. K. Kokovtsov’s, Tsereteli graduated from the University of Tbilisi in 1927 and was named a professor there in 1943. He became director of the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Academy of Sciences of the Georgian SSR in 1960 and vicepresident of the academy in 1967. His principal works deal with Arabic linguistics and folklore, Kartvelian linguistics, and the history of Middle Eastern writing systems; he published various ancient texts.

Tsereteli studied Urartean cuneiform epigraphs and Georgian epigraphic inscriptions. He deciphered and studied the Armazi bilingual inscription and other Aramaic inscriptions uncovered during the excavations at Mtskheta (Armazi). Tsereteli studied the principles of Georgian versification, including the text of S. Rustaveli’s narrative poem The Man in the Panther’s Skin. He published works on the historical and areal relations among the Semitic languages, on Hebrew studies, on Aramaic writing, and on the derivation of the Georgian alphabet.

Tsereteli was a deputy to the sixth through eighth convocations of the Supreme Soviet of the Georgian SSR and was awarded three orders,


Uzvelesi k’art’uli carcerebipalestinidan. Tbilisi, 1960.
Metri da rit’ma vep’xistqaosanshi. Tbilisi, 1973.
In Russian translation:
Urartskie pamiatniki muzeia Gruzii. Tbilisi, 1939.
Armazskaia bilingva. Tbilisi, 1941.
Arabskie dialekty Srednei Azii. Tbilisi, 1956.


“Akademik G. V. Tsereteli” (obituary). Voprosy iazykoznaniia, 1974, no. 1.