Prince Alexander of Georgia - Struggle Against Russia

Struggle Against Russia

Alexander's suspicions came true when the Russians annexed the Georgian kingdom in 1801, deposing its native dynasty. In spite of a thorough Russian search, the rebel prince managed to safely reach Persia where the shah gave him a pension and some Armenian-populated villages in Azerbaijan. When the Russo-Persian war broke out in 1804, Alexander fought alongside the Persians and had permanent contacts with the opposition in Georgia. He also had talks with the French diplomats of Napoleon. In September 1812, he returned to Georgia to lead a popular uprising in the Kakheti province. Approximately 4,000 insurgents took control of the province and decided to make Alexander king of Georgia, but were eventually defeated by a regular Russian army from October 1812 to March 1813. Alexander returned to Persia, and with the help of his friend, the heir apparent Abbas Mirza and the Armenian Catholicos Efrem married the daughter of Melik Sahak Aghamalian, the secular chief of the Armenians of Erivan. Both Alexander and the Persian government hoped that this marriage would secure Armenian support against the Russians. The prince attempted to stage anti-Russian revolts in various provinces of Georgia. In 1832, part of Georgian nobles and intellectuals organized a plot against the Russian rule and invited Alexander to be crowned as king. The plot however soon collapsed and Alexander had to abandon his hopes. He lived thereafter as a broken man and died c. 1844 in Tehran and is buried in an Armenian Church in Ghavam Saltaneh Street in Tehran, Iran.

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