Pitsunda Cathedral
Pitsunda Cathedral is a Georgian Orthodox Cathedral
A cathedral is a Christian church that contains the seat of a bishop...

 located in Pitsunda
Pitsunda is a resort town in Gagra district of Abkhazia.The town was founded by the Greeks in the 5th century BC as a trade colony Pityus or Pitiunt. Excavations guided by Andria Apakidze unearthed remains of three 4th-century churches and a bath with superb mosaic floors...

, in the Gagra district
Gagra district
Gagra District is a district of Abkhazia. It corresponds to the Georgian district by the same name. In medieval times, it was known as the southern part of Sadzen. It is located in the western part of Abkhazia, and the river Psou serves as a border with Krasnodar Kray of Russia. Its capital is...

 of the de facto
De facto
De facto is a Latin expression that means "concerning fact." In law, it often means "in practice but not necessarily ordained by law" or "in practice or actuality, but not officially established." It is commonly used in contrast to de jure when referring to matters of law, governance, or...

 independent Republic of Abkhazia, internationally recognised to constitute a part of Georgia
Georgia (country)
Georgia is a sovereign state in the Caucasus region of Eurasia. Located at the crossroads of Western Asia and Eastern Europe, it is bounded to the west by the Black Sea, to the north by Russia, to the southwest by Turkey, to the south by Armenia, and to the southeast by Azerbaijan. The capital of...

. The cathedral is currently used by the Abkhazian Orthodox Church
Abkhazian Orthodox Church
The Abkhazian Orthodox Church is an Eastern Orthodox church outside the official Eastern Orthodox ecclesiastical hierarchy. It came into existence when the Sukhumi-Abkhazian Eparchy declared on 15 September 2009 that it no longer considered itself part of the Georgian Orthodox Church and that it...

 and serves as that body's seat, although this usage is disputed by the Republic of Georgia and is considered irregular by the Eastern Orthodox communion.

Pitsunda Cathedral was built at the end of the 10th century by King Bagrat III of Georgia
Bagrat III of Georgia
Bagrat III , of the Georgian Bagrationi dynasty, was King of the Abkhazians from 978 on and King of Georgia from 1008 on. He united these two titles by dynastic inheritance and, through conquest and diplomacy, added some more lands to his realm, effectively becoming the first king of what is...

. It served as the seat of the Georgian Orthodox Catholicate of Abkhazia
Catholicate of Abkhazia
The Catholicate of Abkhazia was a subdivision of the Georgian Orthodox Church that existed as an independent entity in western Georgia from the 1470s to 1814. It was headed by the Catholicos of Abkhazia, officially styled as the Catholicos Patriarch of Imereti, Odishi, Ponto-Abkhaz-Guria,...

 until the late 16th century when Abkhazia came under the Ottoman
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...


The cathedral contains vestiges of wall-painting from the 13th and the 16th centuries.

External references

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