Galian people

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Sergey Gugushvili.jpg
Khatuna Kalmakhelidze.jpg
Philip Jaqeli.jpg
Nino Tsereteli.jpg
Total population
~2 million
Related ethnic groups

The Galian people (Galian: გალი, gali; Varkan: გალელები, galelebi) are an indigenous Kartvelian-speaking ethnic subgroup of Kartvelians that mostly live in Eastern Varkana. The Galians traditionally speak the Galian language, a language belonging to the Kartvelian language family. Galian is natively spoken by around 509,110 people as of 2016. Currently, most Galians' native language is Varkan.



Modern theories suggest that the Karuni tribes are direct ancestors of the Galian-Kaspians, they constituted the dominant ethnic and cultural presence in the south-western Iremian Sea region in antiquity, and hence played a significant role in the ethnogenesis of the modern Varkans.





Galian is a complex and morphologically rich tongue belonging to the Kartvelian language family whose other members are Kaspian, Tsali and Varkan. N. Marr regarded Galian and Kaspian, two dialects of "linguistically one" language, as two languages. The Galian language does not have a written history, thus Aetolian and Varkan serve as the main literary languages for the Galian people. Their folk literature has been transmitted orally and has not been systematically recorded. The written Galian literature — based on the Galian script — emerged in the Second Republic of Varkana, but an official standard form of the tongue was never established.

Galian is nowadays an official language in six Varkan communes alongside Varkan: TBD, TBD, TBD, TBD, TBD, and TBD.