National Geographic : 1992 May
On the high slopes of the Caucasus Mountains, shep herds seek summer pasture for the huge herds of sheep they have driven as far as a hundred miles from Georgia's eastern steppes. Despite its formidable mountain barriers, Georgia endured scores of invaders through a tumultuous history that also included moments of glory and greatness. At the end of the 12th century, under the leg endary Queen Tamara, a powerful Georgian king dom ruled much of Cauca sia. Beset by Persians and Ottoman Turks from the 15th century on, a much fragmented Georgian nation increasingly looked north of the Caucasus to its mighty Russian neighbor for protection. Under Tsar Alexander I, most of Geor gia was gathered piece by piece into the Russian Empire early in the 19th century.