Coin of Dioscurias, late 2nd century BC. Obverse: The caps (pilei) of Dioscuri surmounted by stars; reverse: Thyrsos, ΔΙΟΣΚΟΥΡΙΑΔΟΣ
The Sohum-Kale fort in the early 19th century.
Sukhumi Botanical Garden
Sukhumi quay
Sukhumi in 1912. Early color photo by Sergei Prokudin-Gorskii
Medieval bridge over the Besletka river known as the Queen Tamar Bridge.
Railway station

City in a wide bay on the Black Sea's eastern coast.

- Sukhumi

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War in Abkhazia (1992–1993)

Fought between Georgian government forces for the most part and Abkhaz separatist forces, Russian government armed forces and North Caucasian militants between 1992 and 1993.

A map of the conflict region
Events of the war in August 1992 – October 1992
Events of the war in October 1992 – August 1993
Events of the war in August 1993 – October 1993
The 12th anniversary of ethnic cleansing in Abkhazia, which was held in Tbilisi in 2005. One of the visitors of the gallery recognized her dead son on the photograph
"Monument to the heroes, who fell fighting for the territorial integrity of Georgia", Tbilisi
The names of Abkhaz troops and their allies killed in action during the war are inscribed on the "Alley of Glory" monument in Sukhumi
Ukrainian UNA - UNSO volunteers in Georgia

In the aftermath, the first armed clashes between the representatives of the Abkhazian and Georgian populations took place on 16–17 July 1989 in Sukhumi.

Red Army invasion of Georgia

Military campaign by the Russian Red Army aimed at overthrowing the Social-Democratic (Menshevik) government of the Democratic Republic of Georgia (DRG) and installing a Bolshevik regime in the country.

The Red Army in Tbilisi, Feb 25 1921
Red Army Caucasus Front Headquarters, c. 1921. From left to right: Sergei Ivanovich Gusev, Sergo Ordzhonikidze, Mikhail Tukhachevsky, Valentin Trifonov, uncertain. Two of the four named officers would be killed during Stalin's Great Purge.
Georgian officers at the Headquarters of People's Guard in Tbilisi
Map of the borders of the territory, which was proposed by the Georgian delegation at the Paris Peace Conference of 1919 for inclusion in the Democratic Republic of Georgia, as well as the territories that after 1921 are part of neighboring states.
Orjonikidze's telegram to Lenin and Stalin: "The Red Flag of Soviet power flies over Tiflis..." (National Archives of Georgia)
The British Mark V tanks acquired by the Red Army in the course of the Civil War and Foreign Intervention contributed to the Soviet victory in the battle for Tbilisi.
Map of Turkish invasion of Georgian-held territories February–March 1921
Red Army commanders in Batum in March 1921
"Red Army Effects Junction With Kemal's Troops After Overrunning the Republic" (The New York Times, 20 February 1921)
Tbilisi Defenders Memorial March in 2021 - the annual march along the frontline. Historian Dimitri Silakadze's initiative aims to remember and commemorate the heroism of defenders of Tbilisi demonstrated during the Red Army invasion of Georgia.

Simultaneously, Red Army units marched into Georgia from the north through the Daryal and Mamisoni passes, and along the Black Sea coast towards Sukhumi.


De facto state in the South Caucasus, recognised by most countries as part of Georgia, which views the region as an autonomous republic.

The Kingdom of Abkhazia was united through dynastic succession with the newly formed Kingdom of Georgia in 1008 when Bagrat II of Abkhazia became Bagrat III of Georgia.
The borders of the Sukhumi District of the Kutaisi Governorate in 1899 when Abkhazia was part of the Russian Empire.
Abkhaz and Georgian generals in the Imperial Russian Army, 19th century
Map of the Soviet Caucasus (1957–91) showing the Abkhaz ASSR within the Georgian SSR.
Georgian Civil War and the War in Abkhazia in August–October 1993
Exhibition at the 2005 commemoration of the ethnic cleansing in Abkhazia, held on its 12th anniversary in Tbilisi.
Abkhazians carrying the republic's flags in a parade.
Seaside in Pitsunda, Abkhazia in 2006
Map of Georgia highlighting Abkhazia (green) and South Ossetia (purple).
The Russian embassy in Sukhumi
Dmitry Medvedev (centre, with dark tie) visited the Russian military base in Gudauta in 2010
The leaders of Abkhazia, Russia and South Ossetia, shortly after the 2008 war. Left to right: South Ossetian President Eduard Kokoity; Russian President Dmitry Medvedev; Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov; Abkhazian President Sergei Bagapsh.
Border checkpoint on the Psou River
The breakaway republics of Abkhazia, South Ossetia and Nagorno-Karabakh within the Caucasus region
Abkhazian President Alexander Ankvab with Transnistrian President Yevgeny Shevchuk in September 2013
"View of Mount Agepsta and Turyi gory (Tur Mountains) from the top of Kamennyi Stolb, Aibga Ridge.", 2014.
View from Pitsunda cape
Logo of the Government of the Autonomous Republic of Abkhazia.
1) Gagra
2) Gudauta
3) Sukhumi
4) Gulripshi
5) Ochamchira
6) Tkvarcheli
7) Gali
Beach in Gagra in May 2014
New Athos monastery in Abkhazia
Russian Drama Theatre. Sukhumi, Abkhazia.
Daur Akhvlediani Stadium, Gagra

Its capital and largest city is Sukhumi.


Abkhazians, or Abkhazs (Аԥсуаа, ), are a Northwest Caucasian ethnic group, mainly living in Abkhazia, a disputed region on the northeastern coast of the Black Sea.

Bagrat III of Georgia, 11th century king of the Kingdom of Abkhazia
Conference of Abkhazian nobility in 1839
Abkhaz girl in 1881
Pitsunda Cathedral, seat of Abkhazian Orthodox Church

This warlike people came into contact with Ancient Greeks through the colonies of Dioskourias and Pitiuntas.

Castor and Pollux

Castor and Pollux (or Polydeukes) are twin half-brothers in Greek and Roman mythology, known together as the Dioscuri.

Statues of Castor and Pollux (3rd century AD)
Castor depicted on a calyx krater of c. 460–450 BC, holding a horse's reins and spears and wearing a pilos-style helmet
Pair of Roman statuettes (3rd century AD) depicting the Dioscuri as horsemen, with their characteristic skullcaps (Metropolitan Museum of Art)
The Rape of the Daughters of Leucippus by Rubens, c. 1618
Coin of Antiochus VI with Dioskouroi
Robert Fagan Castor and Pollux (between 1793 and 1795)
Fragmentary remains of the Temple of Castor and Pollux in Rome.
Relief (2nd century BC) depicting the Dioskouroi galloping above a winged Victory, with a banquet (theoxenia) laid out for them below
Funerary stele from Alba Iulia; it reads Invicto/ Mythrae / Diosco/rus Marci/ v(otum) s(olvit) l(ibens) m(erito)
Dioscorus pays the vows of Marcus to the invincible Mythras and willingly deserves it.
Etruscan inscription to the Dioskouroi as "sons of Zeus" at the bottom of an Attic red-figure kylix (c. 515–510 BC)
Zeus, Hera, and Amor observe the birth of Helen and Dioscuri (Dutch majolica, 1550).

The ancient city of Dioscurias or Dioskurias (Διοσκουριάς) on the Black Sea coast, modern Sukhumi, was named after them.

Principality of Abkhazia

The Principality of Abkhazia (აფხაზეთის სამთავრო) emerged as a separate feudal entity in the 15th-16th centuries, amid the civil wars in the Kingdom of Georgia that concluded with the dissolution of the unified Georgian monarchy.

Abkhazia and other countries after the dissolution of Georgia
Abkhazia and other countries after the dissolution of Georgia

In the 1570s, the Ottoman navy occupied the fort of Tskhumi, turning it into the Turkish fortress of Suhum-Kale (hence, the modern name Sukhumi).

Russo-Turkish War (1877–1878)

Conflict between the Ottoman Empire and the Eastern Orthodox Christians coalition led by the Russian Empire and composed of Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia, and Montenegro.

Russian troops and Bulgarian volunteers fighting off the Ottoman Army during the Battle of Shipka Pass in August 1877 (painting: Alexey Popov, 1893)
The Moni Arkadiou monastery
Ottoman Empire in 1862
Alexander Gorchakov
Europe before the Balkan crisis
Herzegovinian insurgents in 1875
Bashi-bazouks' atrocities in Bulgaria.
The Avenger: An Allegorical War Map for 1877 by Fred. W. Rose, 1872: This map reflects the "Great Eastern Crisis" and the subsequent Russo-Turkish War of 1877–78.
Russia preparing to release the Balkan dogs of war, while Britain warns him to take care. Punch cartoon from 17 June 1876
Dragoons of Nizhny Novgorod pursuing the Turks near Kars, 1877, painting by Aleksey Kivshenko
Russian crossing of the Danube, June 1877, painting by Nikolai Dmitriev-Orenburgsky, 1883
Map of the Balkan Theater
Russian, Romanian and Ottoman troop movements at Plevna
Soldiers of Finnish Guard sharpshooter battalion during Battle of Gorni Dubnik
Fighting near Ivanovo-Chiflik
Gazi Osman Pasha
The Ottoman capitulation at Niğbolu (Nicopolis, modern Nikopol) in 1877 was significant, as it was the site of an important Ottoman victory in 1396 which marked the expansion of the Ottoman Empire into the Balkans.
Taking of the Grivitsa redoubt by the Russians – a few hours later the redoubt was recaptured by the Ottomans and fell to the Romanians on 30 August 1877, in what became known as the "Third Battle of Grivitsa".
Battle at bridge Skit, November 1877
The Russo-Turkish War in Caucasia, 1877
Plevna Chapel near the walls of Kitay-gorod
Europe after the Congress of Berlin in 1878 and the territorial and political rearrangement of the Balkan Peninsula.
Emigration of Armenians into Georgia during the Russo-Turkish war
Turkish refugees fleeing from Tarnovo towards Shumen
The execution of the Bashi-bazouks in Bulgaria. 1878
Bones of massacred Bulgarians at Stara Zagora (Ethnic cleansing by the Ottoman Empire)
The Red Cross and the Red Crescent emblems
Konstantin Makovsky, The Bulgarian Martyresses, a painting depicting the atrocities of bashibazouks in Bulgaria.
Two Hawks by Vasily Vereshchagin, showing two Bashibazouks held captive by the Bulgarian and Russian army.
Bashi-Bazouks, returning with the spoils from the Romanian shore of the Danube. 1877 engraving.

While in Constantinople in 1879, Protestant missionary George Warren Wood reported Turkish authorities in Amasia brutally persecuting Christian Armenian refugees from Soukoum Kaleh.

Sukhumi Babushara Airport

Main airport of Abkhazia.

It is located in the village of Babushara next to the larger village of Dranda and some 20 km from Sukhumi, the capital of the autonomous republic.

Raul Khajimba

Abkhazian politician, and served as President of Abkhazia from 25 September 2014 until 12 January 2020.

After a bomb attack on 13 December 1999 in Sukhumi targeting government officials, President Ardzinba dismissed Astamur Tarba as Security Service chairman and appointed Khajimba in his stead.

Sergei Bagapsh

Abkhaz politician who served as the second President of the Republic of Abkhazia.

Bagapsh in 2008
Sergei Bagapsh (on the left) with Dmitry Medvedev and Eduard Kokoity
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev pays his respects to Bagapsh at a service in Moscow on 30 May 2011.
Bagapsh on a 2006 stamp of Abkhazia

Sergei Bagapsh was born on 4 March 1949 at Sukhumi in the Georgian SSR.