WHO WERE THE PROTO-GEORGIANS?
Based on the study and analysis of ancient near easrtern sources and current scientific literature in the field, we believe the following conclusion can be drawn about the ethno-genesis of Georgian tribes: the relationship between genetically related Ancient Anatolian and Georgian (in the II millennium BC: Hatti, Kaška, Muška; in the I millennium BC – Daiaeni/Diaohi, Kulha) tribes developed based on and largely due to the metallurgical manufacturing processes (obtaining and manufacturing of ore and processing the metal). The engagement in the metallurgical production processes of the local tribesand their neighboring ethnic groups led to the emergence of a common culture, religious and ideologicalsystems, and the formation of a united consciousness across the entire geographic area of settlements of Georgian tribes. This, created pre-conditions for the formation of Kolkhian end Iberian kingdomslater on.
If we postulate, as supported by recent archaeological discoveries, that the Hattian and Kaška people (they might even beone and thesame) are ancestors of Kolkhians (i.e. Proto-Kolkhians), and consider theirneighbors – the Muškiansalso also a Georgian ethnic group, then the study of the history of Georgiasould begin not from the period of Diaohi-Kulha kingdoms in the VIII-VII c. BC, but from its early origins in XV c. B.C.
Keywords: Hittites, Hattians, Kaška, Muška, Diauhi, Kulha, Georgia, Georgians, Hittitology, Caucasiology, Ancient Anatolia, metallurgy, iron