The Andronikashvili ( _ka. ანდრონიკაშვილები) sometimes known as Endronikashvili (ენდრონიკაშვილები) was a princely family in Georgia which claimed their descent from the Byzantine
Comnenid dynastyand played a prominent role in political, military and religious life of Georgia. After the Russian annexation of Georgia (1801), the Andronikashvili were confirmed in the dignity of knyazAndronikov ( _ru. Андрониковы) in 1826.
The surname Andronikashvili, literally meaning "children [descendants] of Andronikos", is certainly attested in the sixteenth-century documents, but the oral tradition has it that the family descends from Alexios Komnenos, the illegitimate son of the
Byzantine Emperor Andronikos I Komnenos(ruled 1183-1185) by his mistress Theodora Komnene, Queen Dowagerof Jerusalem. After the deposition and brutal murder of his father, Alexios is said to have taken refuge at the court of his relative George III of Georgiawho granted him a large estate in the eastern Georgian province of Kakheti. In spite of the extremely fragmentary nature of the early Andronikashvili pedigree, Professor Cyril Toumanoff(1976) has accepted the Comnenid version as plausible, but the evidence marshaled by Kuršankis (1977) suggests that this might have been only a legend. [Kelsey Jackson Williams (2006), A Genealogy of the Grand Komnenoi of Trebizond. "Foundations - the Journal of the Foundation for Medieval Genealogy" – [http://fmg.ac/FMG/Journal/02-03.htm Vol. 2, No. 3] .]
Status and possessions
The Andronikashvili family estates were located in the southeastern portion of Kakheti, one of the three kingdoms that emerged after the demise of a unified
Kingdom of Georgialater in the fifteenth century. Their aboriginal appanage was known as "Saandroniko" (საანდრონიკო) or "Saendroniko" (საენდრონიკო) and comprised several villages including Melaani, Chalaubani, and Pkhoveli. In the sixteenth century, the family acquired the office of High Constable( mouravi) of K’iziqiwhich became hereditary in the main line (sometimes known as Abelashvili, აბელაშვილები). A century later, a branch (also known as Zurabashvili, ზურაბაშვილები) attained to a similar position in Martqopi.
Along with the
Cholokashviliand Abashidzefamilies, the Andronikashvili were regarded as grandees of the first class of the Kingdom of Kakheti. They held key political, diplomatic and military posts at the court and were distinguished for their particular loyalty to the royal Bagrationi dynastywith which they had ties of marriage. In the 1780s, they functioned as military governors of Ganja Khanatewhich was briefly subjugated by King Erekle IIto Georgian control. Several representatives of the family served also as bishops of Bodbe, Ninotsminda, Alaverdi and Nekresi.
After the Russian annexation of Georgia (1801), the Andronikashvili were confirmed in the dignity of
knyazin 1826 and mostly served in the Russian army. [ [http://www.rulex.ru/01010519.htm Андрониковы, князья] . "Russian Biographic Lexicon". Accessed on July 24, 2007.]
Bolsheviktakeover in the 1917 October Revolution, the head of the family, Jesse Andronikashvili (Andronikov), managed to send his family to France, while himself spent several years in Soviet prisons before being shot in 1937. His son, Constantin Andronikof(1916-1997) was a French diplomat, the Dean of St. Sergius Orthodox Theological Institutein Paris, and translator of Sergei Bulgakov's theological writings into French.
Zakaria Andronikashvili(c. 1740-1800), military commander
Zaal Andronikashvili(died 1803), military commander
Ivane Andronikashvili(1798-1868), general in the Russian service
Alexander Andronikashvili(1892-1923), anti-Sovietguerrilla leader
Elepter Andronikashvili(1910-1989), physicist
Constantin Andronikof(1916-1997), diplomat in the French service and a major French translator of Russian religious thought.
List of Georgian princely families
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