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About Ortubani Convent

Best time to visit: All Season

Ortubani Monastery of the Nativity of the Virgin (Mdzovreti Fortress-Hall Complex) is located in Shida Kartli, in the village of Ortubani, Kareli Municipality. It is a monument of the late feudal era, dating from the XVI-XVII centuries, and includes the church of the Virgin of Ortubani, a bell tower, a tower, a fence, and a house. The construction of the fortress-hall is connected with the relocation of the Tsitsishvili feudal center from the three members to Dzovreti (Zovreti) at the beginning of the 17th century. They turned Mdzovreti into a political center of nobility. In the 19th century, the Tsitsishvili family left this place and the city ceased to exist, and a new village, Ortubani, was built on its ruins.


Ortubani Church of the Mother of God is a hall built of cobblestone and crushed sandstone. The conch and chamber of the apse are made of brick. There are arched windows on the axis of the semicircular apse, each with a high niche on either side. There are also arched windows in the west, north, and south walls. The south facade is finished with a row of well-smoothed piles of shirim stones and a sandstone shelf cornice. The temple has an entrance from the south with a wooden pole on the inside, and an entrance covered with sandstone architecture on the outside. The church has a bell tower attached to the west.

The bell tower is mostly built of cobblestone. In the lower part, the cut stone is also used, in the interior - brick. The gated arched gate (first floor of the bell tower) is open on three sides with open arches. The second floor, equipped with defensive elements, houses the guard and can be climbed by a wooden staircase. The east wall borders the church. The other three walls have artillery. The third floor, covered with arches and wide on all four sides, with semicircular arches, is a hanging bell tower. At the level of the arches of the third floor, the square contour of the building is slightly narrowed, moving to an octagonal and ending in an octagonal pyramid.

The tower of Mdzovreti Castle-Hall complex is located in the south-western part of the ensemble. The pyramidal, seven-story tower is built of cobblestone. Bricks are used in the interior. The walls of the first floor are blind. The second floor has one window and in its wall begins a staircase that goes up to the top floor. The first floor had a wooden roof, the rest of the floors were covered with a slightly brick arch. The tower has two entrances from the north to the second floor and from the south to the third. The tower is adjacent to the north side of his contemporary house.

At the foot of the slope of the castle-hall, a long section was surrounded by a fence, and the rest of the buildings are located on the fence. The fence had two entrances, one on the west and one on the north (near the church). Today the northern part of the fence is preserved along its entire length and partly on the east and west sides.

How to get there

Ortubani Convent is located in Shida Kartli, Kareli Municipality, in the village of Oghtubani, about 200-300 meters southeast of the village, on a mountain slope. The vehicle road to the monastery is paved.

Tags: #History #Church #Culture #Monastery #Historical Monument


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