Niko I Dadiani

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Niko I Dadiani
Dadiani niko.jpg
Late 19th-century portrait of Niko Dadiani
Prince of Megrelia
Reign 30 August 1853 – 4 January 1867
Predecessor Ekaterine Dadiani
Successor Deposed by the Russian Empire
Spouse Countess Maria Alexandrovna Adlerberg
Issue Niko II Dadiani, Prince of Megrelia
Princess Ekaterina Dadiani
Princess Salomé Nikolaievna Obolenskaya
Dynasty Dadiani
Father David Dadiani, Prince of Megrelia
Mother Ekaterine Dadiani, Princess of Megrelia
Born (1847-01-23)23 January 1847
Zugdidi
Died 1 January 1903(1903-01-01) (aged 55)
Saint Petersburg
Burial Martvili
Religion Georgian Orthodox Church

Niko I (Nikolas) Dadiani (4 January 1847, Zugdidi – 23 January 1903, Saint Petersburg) was the last ruling prince of the Western Georgian Principality of Megrelia in southeast Europe. After Russia's formal abolition of his principality (1866), he served as a general in the Imperial Russian Army.

Family[edit]

Niko's mother, Ekaterine
Niko's father, Prince David

Niko was born to Prince David of Megrelia and his wife Ekaterine, née Chavchavadze. He was seven years old when his father died and his mother assumed control of the principality as a regent. During the confrontation of Megrelia with invading Turkish forces in the times of the Crimean War, Niko enlisted in the army and stood by his mother who refused to surrender to the Ottomans. When his mother moved to Saint Petersburg Niko accompanied her and later moved to Paris, where he received his education. He was married to Countess Maria Adlerberg, the daughter of Count Alexander Adlerberg, a Russian aristocrat and Minister of the Imperial Court (and brother-in-law of Amalie Adlerberg).

Abolition of the Principality[edit]

Niko's wife, Countess Maria Adlerberg

In 1866, the principality of Megrelia was abolished by the Russian Emperor but Niko retained the title of His Serene Highness Prince of Megrelia. As compensation for his losses, Prince Dadiani received one million roubles from the Russian Government, which helped him save the dynastic estates, including the Dadiani Mansion. Being relieved of the duties he previously had as a ruling prince, Niko found himself a successful career in the Imperial Army. He was awarded a golden sword for bravery during the Russo-Turkish War (1877–1878), being promoted to the status of Major General in 1878. Following the death of his mother, Niko inherited her estate and at that point became the richest landowner in the entire Caucasus. In that period, Dadiani had an interest in charity and in 1885 he gifted his personal library to the "Society for the Spreading of Georgian Literacy". He also opened several schools and clinics which served the poor population of Samegrelo and which promoted the preservation of the Georgian language.

Prince Niko died in 1903 and was buried in the medieval monastery of Martvili along with his mother Ekaterine.

Trivia[edit]

References[edit]