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Archeological discovery of Kvevri, wine vessels made of gold, silver, bronze, clay wine vessels dating back to III-II millennium B.C. can serve as an evident proof that Georgia is one of the ancient centers of origin of cultivated vine (Vitis Vinifera).
The age of materials and perfection of species found in Georgia proves that grape growing and wine making in Georgia dates back to about 7000 B.C. and earlier. Archeological remains of grape pips evidence that grape has been cultivated in Georgia for ages. There are currently about 4000 species of grapes worldwide; 450 native to Georgia though 62 are standard range of wine varieties; including 29 for wine and 9 table grapes. 65-70% of Georgian vineyards are concentrated in Kakheti.
The best quality wine producing industrial vineyards are cultivated at the basin of Alazani an Iori rivers, at 400-700 m above sea level. The climate in Kakheti is moderately warm, average annual active temperature range is about 3500-42000, average annual precipitation range 400-800 mm, duration of daylight - 2000-2200 h; Dedoplistskaro municipality is located at the extreme south-east of Georgia, between Alazani an Iori rivers; this is one of the important parts of Kakheti, called “Kiziki”.
Earliest name of region according to historical sources was “Kambechovani” (Strabo mentioned as “Kambisene”) and was mentioned as part of the “Kingdom of Hereti”. The capital of Kambechovani was Khornabuji, along with Ujarma and Cheremi it was one of the most developed cities at eastern Georgia since III. In the V century, in the reign of Vakhtang Gorgasali, when Georgian church was awarded Autocephaly, Khornabuji Eparchy was one of the earliest twelve Georgian eparchies.
The name “Kiziki” is mentioned firstly mentioned in 15th century, after dividing Georgia in separate kingdoms-domains. Kizikian peasants were exempted from serfdom liabilities and obeyed directly to the king through appointed governor – Mouravi; this peculiarity greatly contributed to development of strong character, love of freedom and loyalty to king and motherland.
The term “Zedashe” has different meanings, but mostly associates to wine and Kvevri. In the dictionary of Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani it is defined as “offertory wine” etimologically originating from meaning of “offertory”. By the Old Testament, Abraham took a tenth of all he had captured in battle and gave it to Melchizedek and after that the offertory to God was established. When the Illuminator St. Nino came to Georgia she was holding grape vine cross bounded with her hair; since then vine becomes symbol of new religion and wine was integral of offertory to church. As all lands and vineyards belonged to seigniors, they paid all taxes to king; but in Kiziki these taxes were obligations of free peasants.
Wine devoted to God was made by families of same surname in one special Kvevri, the wine was donated to church. As families has grown in number some of them created separate Zedashe. In our days every family and its branch thorough Kiziki have their own Zedashe, but only some of them make wine in Zedashe for donation to Church. At Zedashe and Kvevri people prayed to the saint and church to which the offertory wine was prepared. In 20th century initial purpose of Zedashe was forgotten but people still consider it as ritual place.