The chief member of the Kartvelian group of Caucasian languages, spoken by c. 4.5 million people, mainly in Georgia, where it is the official language, as well as in nearby parts of Azerbaijan, Turkey and Iran.
It has been a literary language since the 5th century. Old Georgian was used as a literary medium till the 11th century and it continued to be in religious use until the 19th century. New Georgian as a secular literary medium dates from the 12th century. The language is written in the Georgian alphabet - Mkhedruli, consisting of 33 characters.
Georgian is a polysynthetic language, with both agglutinative and inflective morphological elements.
CLASSIFICATION = Caucasian family, SCRIPT = Georgian alphabet