About Queen Ketevan

Queen Ketevan



Ketevan's fascinating life journey is the source of inspiration for our Festival.  The course of her life unraveled like a petal in the wind, across distances and cultures, fuelling our creativity with the scent of her faith, commitment and tolerance.


Queen Ketevan traveled thousands of kilometers across various cultures. She began her journey in Eastern Europe as the Queen of the Kingdom of Georgia. Fate had something else in store for her and led her to share her kingdom with the powerful Shab Abbas I, a Persian Muslim ruler. In Iran, Ketevan died a martyr in 1624, after a long and painful tormenting prelude to her demise. But Ketevan's journey did not end there. Legend has it that her remains were then taken to India in 1627 and buried in Old Goa by two Augustinian monks, who were devout witnesses and companions during the last years of her life.

Ketevan, then Queen of Georgia became a Martyr and was canonized as a saint by the Georgian Orthodox Church shortly after her demise. An ancient Portuguese document suggested that Ketavan's remains were held in a black sarcophagus kept in the St. Augustinian Convent in Old Goa, India, which were uncovered in 2004 in the Ruins thereof. DNA analyses suggest the remains are those of Ketevan, the Queen of the Kakheti Kingdom in Georgia. Final comparison of samples with living relatives is under investigation.

There is great hope that our Festival will soon be blessed by a patron, none other than Saint Queen Ketevan of Georgia.

Her life, as the lives of various saints around the world, is a lighthouse that illuminates the path of tolerance and coexistence.


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