David Bagration of Mukhrani
|Tenure||16 January 2008 – present|
|Predecessor||Jorge de Bagration|
|Spouse||Anna Bagration-Gruzinsky (divorced)|
|Father||Jorge de Bagration|
|Mother||María de las Mercedes de Zornoza y Ponce de León|
24 June 1976 |
|Religion||Georgian Orthodox Church|
Prince David Bagrationi of Mukhrani, David Bagration de Moukhrani y de Zornoza, or Davit Bagration-Mukhraneli (Georgian: დავით ბაგრატიონ-მუხრანელი) (born 24 June 1976) is a Spanish-born scion of the Mukhrani branch of the former Georgian Bagrationi dynasty and current claimant to the headship of the dynasty and to the historical royal house of Georgia, succeeding on the death of his father Jorge de Bagration on 16 January 2008.
Bagrationi was born to the Georgian emigre family as the second son of Jorge de Bagration by his first wife Doña María de las Mercedes de Zornoza y Ponce de León in Madrid, Spain. David also has one older sister, Maria-Antonietta, one older brother, Irakli, and a younger half-brother, Gourami (Ugo).
In 2007, Bagrationi succeeded his father as the patrilineal head of the family, after his elder brother, Irakli, renounced the headship. As such, he asserts the right to inherit the throne, were it restored, of the united Kingdom of Georgia, as well as inheritance of the designations: Dynastic Heir, Heir to the titles of Duke of the Lasos and Prince of Kakheti, Kartalia, and Mukhrani, and Head of the Family Council. As Head of the Royal family, he is the Grand Master of the following Bagration dynastic orders:
- The Order of the Eagle of Georgia and the Seamless Tunic of Our Lord Jesus Christ
- The Order of the Saint Queen Tamar
- The Order of the Crown of Georgia
During the Russia–Georgia war over South Ossetia in August 2008, Bagrationi accompanied Georgian soldiers to the front-line to render moral support. He commented afterwards that he regretted Georgia "had to pay such a high price to show the world the true face of Russia," and issued a message to the Georgian nation. Bagrationi considers restoration of monarchy in Georgia is not an option at this time because of ongoing Russian occupation of parts of the country; and it is up to the people of Georgia to decide when the monarchy should be restored.
Marriage and divorce
Prince David Bagration of Mukhrani married Princess Ana Bagration-Gruzinsky on 8 February 2009 at the Tbilisi Sameba Cathedral. The marriage united the two branches of the Georgian former royal family with competing claims to the rights to the throne of Georgia — those of Gruzinsky and of Mukhrani — and drew a crowd of 3,000 spectators, officials, and foreign diplomats, as well as extensive coverage by the Georgian media.
The dynastic significance of the wedding lay in the fact that, amidst the turmoil in political partisanship that has roiled Georgia since its independence in 1991, Patriarch Ilia II of Georgia publicly called for restoration of the monarchy as a path toward national unity in October 2007. Although this led some politicians and parties to entertain the notion of a Georgian constitutional monarchy, competition arose among the old dynasty's princes and supporters, as historians and jurists debated which Bagrationi has the strongest hereditary right to a throne that has been vacant since the 1800s. Although some Georgian monarchists support the Gruzinsky branch's claim, others support that of the repatriated Mukhrani branch. Both branches descend in unbroken, legitimate male line from the medieval kings of Georgia down to King Constantine II of Georgia who died in 1505.
Whereas the Bagration-Mukhrani (Bagrationi-Mukhraneli) was a cadet branch of the former Royal House of Kartli, they became the genealogically seniormost line of the Bagrationi dynasty in the early 20th century: yet the elder branch had lost the kingship of Kartli by 1724.
Meanwhile, the Bagration-Gruzinsky line, although junior to the Mukhrani genealogically, reigned over the kingdom of Kakheti, re-united the two eastern Georgian realms in the kingdom of Kartli-Kakheti in 1762, and did not lose sovereignty until Russian annexation in 1801.
David is the only member of his branch who retains Georgian citizenship and residence since the death of his father, Jorge de Bagration-Mukhrani]] in 2008. Aside from his unmarried elder brother, Bagrationi is the heir male of the Bagration family, while Ana's father is the most senior descendant of the last Bagrationi to reign over the united Kartli and Kakheti. Since Nugzar and Prince Eugene Bagration-Gruzinsky are the last patrilineal males descended from King George XII, and both were born before 1950, their branch verges on extinction. But the marriage between Nugzar Gruzinsky's heiress and the Mukhrani heir resolves their rivalry for the claim to the throne, which has divided Georgian monarchists. A son born of this marriage is apt to eventually become both the heir male of the House of Bagration and the heir general of George XII of Georgia.
There have been reports of marital discord since April 2009. In December 2009, in a Georgian version of The Moment of Truth on Imedi TV the Georgian actress Shorena Begashvili admitted to having an affair with David.
The marriage also triggered controversy for its alleged political motives. The then-Georgian Interior Minister Vano Merabishvili stated in an interview published by Russian newspaper Kommersant on 7 April 2010 that their marital union had been arranged with the primary purpose of promoting the restoration of the Georgian monarchy under the Bagrationi. Therefore, according to Merabishvili, Anna Bagration-Gruzinsky was forced to divorce her first husband Grigol Malania in order to allow her to wed Bagrationi. At that time Merabishvili claimed that the Bagrationi couple were no longer married. However it was rumoured by the Georgian press that the couple had reconciled and was expecting their first child. The couple's only child, a son, Giorgi, was born in Madrid on 27 September 2011 and baptized by Patriarch Ilia II at the Svetitskhoveli Cathedral in Mtskheta on 3 November 2013. On 15 December 2013, the official statement from David posted on the website "Royal House of Georgia" confirmed his divorce with Anna.
|Ancestors of David Bagration of Mukhrani|
- Buyers, Christopher (2008). "Mukhrani: The Bagrationi (Bagration) Dynasty". Royal Ark. Retrieved 15 February 2009.
- "Royal House of Georgia – Dynasty". Retrieved 24 July 2011.
- "Order of the Eagle of Georgia". Royal House of Georgia. Retrieved 24 July 2011.
- "Order of the Queen Tamar". Royal House of Georgia. Retrieved 24 July 2011.
- "Order of the Crown". Royal House of Georgia. Retrieved 24 July 2011.
- (Spanish)"Un Rey con acento español para Georgia". ABC Periódico Electrónico. 5 September 2008.
- Vignanski, Misha (02/08/2009). "Primera boda real en dos siglos reagrupa dos ramas de la dinastía Bagration". el confidencial (in Spanish). Spain. Retrieved 02/09/2009.
- "Time for a King for Georgia?".
- Montgomery-Massingberd, Hugh (1980). Burke's Royal Families of the World: Volume II Africa & the Middle East. p. 59. ISBN 0-85011-029-7.
- "Wedding of the two royal dynasties members". Georgia Times. 2 August 2009. Retrieved 2 September 2009.
- Buyers, Christopher (2008). "Kakheti: The Bagration Dynasty". Royal Ark. Retrieved 15 February 2009.
- "Un altro divorzio reale". Rai News. 16 December 2013. Retrieved 7 January 2014.
- "Georgia's Interior Minister: Revival of Bagrationi Dynasty in Georgia is Primakov's project". 15 April 2010.
- "Merabishvili on Elections, Opposition, Russia, Ukraine". 15 April 2010.
- ""სამეფო კარზე" მემკვიდრეს ელოდებიან" [Royal court successor is expected] (in Georgian).
- "Couple of Georgian royal heirs is on the verge of divorce". Georgia Times. 31 March 2010.
- "Династический брак представителей восьмого поколения фамилии Багратионов окончательно распался" (in Russian). Blagovest, Russia. 8 March 2009. Retrieved 11 August 2009.
- "Look Caras: Gritos y susurros" (in Spanish). 8 October 2009.
- Descendant of Georgian kings announces his divorce. Vestnik Kavkaza. 16 December 2013.
- Charkhalashvili, Ketevan (19 December 2013). "Georgian Royal Family Divorce". Georgian News TV. Retrieved 7 January 2014.
- Royal House of Bagration of Georgia
- Heraldry of the Royal House of Bagration-Mouchraneli
- (Russian) Монархом Грузии может стать Князь Давид Георгиевич Багратион-Мухранский. Russkaya Liniya. 29 February 2008.
David Bagration of MukhraniBorn: June 24 1976
|Titles in pretence|
Jorge de Bagration
|— TITULAR —
Pretender of the throne of Georgia
disputed with Nugzar
16 January 2008 – present