Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies

Notes and Communications

Georgia in 1840: The Lister Diaries

David M. Lang


Georgian and Caucasian historical studies have recently received a stimulus through the publication of Professor Ronald Grigor Suny's important work, The making of the Georgian nation. Professor Suny draws attention to the seminal importance of the first half-century of Russian rule in Georgia, following the 1801 annexation. The old picturesque norms of Georgian social life were increasingly under pressure, as the Russian autocratic military bureaucracy sought to absorb the intransigent Caucasian peoples into their own larger administrative entity. (Dr. Stephen Jones and Professor Laurens Hamilton Rhinelander have done useful work on this phase of Georgian history).2 As we know from recent events in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia, these efforts at assimilation met with mixed results, and serious nationality problems continue today