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Archeologists Uncover Qvevris at Khikhani Caste

Archeologists have discovered 43 medieval qvevris at Khikhani Castle in western Georgia. 

The qvevri is a large, clay Amphora-like vessel, traditionally buried in the ground up to its neck, in which wine is fermented and stored in regions of Georgia and especially in Kakheti, East Georgia.

The artefacts were uncovered in the historic church, located in mountainous Khulo municipality in the Adjara region.

Archaeologists believed the marani (a special site where qvevri and wine were kept) was supposedly used for storing water rather than wine.

We were exploring the site 2,635 metres from sea level. We believe that it is not a classical marani and it dates back to the 11th -13th centuries,” archeologist Davit Mindorashvili said. 

He stressed the discovery would be conserved and reconstruction works would continue at the castle under the guidance of the Adjara Historical Heritage Protection Agency.

Head of the Agency Miranda Charkviani said the Khikani Castle had medieval architecture and was a monument of international importance.

Major part of Khikhani Castle.

“We intend to conserve the site. Only certain parts of the monument will be rehabilitated to international standards,” she said.

Charkviani said as well as qvevri, small shells were also found at the Castle.

The traditional Georgian method of making qvevri wine has been approved by UNESCO to be included in the list of Intangible Cultural Heritage.