Georgian is the language of the Republic of Georgia. It is spoken by about 3 1/2 million, or seventy percent of the total population. It is a Caucasian language. In the Georgian language, the word "mama" means father, and "deda" means mother, a reversal of the nearly universal "m for maternal, d for paternal" pattern for "baby-speak".
Georgian belongs to the Caucasian family, but since these languages have been grouped more on a basis of geography than linguistics, it is questionable whether any of the other Caucasian languages are actually related to it. In any event, it is the most widely spoken of these languages, and the only one with an ancient literary tradition.
The origin of the Georgian alphabet is obscure, but it is known to have been invented in the 3rd century A.D. It is written from left to right. The present script, called Mkhedruli ("secular [or, military] writing"), replaced the original Khutsuri ("church writing") in the 11th century. There are thirty-three letters, without distinction between upper and lower case, and with one letter for each sound and one sound for each letter.
The Georgians call themselves Kartvelebi and their land Sakartvelo. The language contains some formidable consonant clusters, as may be seen in the names of such Georgian cities as Tbilisi, Mtskheta, Tkvarcheli, and Tskhinvali. Many Georgian surnames end in -idze, -adze, -dali, and -shvili. Joseph Stalin's original Georgian name was Dzhugashvili.
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²/ is a velarized /l/
Original Source: An [http://www.armazi.demon.co.uk/georgian/grammar.html online Georgian Grammar].