Ekaterine Porakishvili-Sarajishvili

1862-1916 / public figure, philanthropist

Ekaterine studied and became fluent in the Russian, English and German languages already in childhood. This helped her in her business relations with Europeans visiting Georgia such as Marjory Wardrop, Arthur Leist and Bertha Suttner.

After marrying businessman Davit Sarajishvili, Ekaterine gained many new friends. During the last years of Russian imperial rule and during Georgia's brief independence (1918-21), their family worked to develop the Georgian "national idea", reform the education system and popularize Georgian culture.

After her husband's death in 1911, Ekaterine took charge of the wealthy family's business and philanthropic activities. Over the years she donated millions to Georgian cultural institutions such as the Society for the Promotion of Literacy, the Society for History and Ethnography, the Drama Society and the Philharmonic Society. She also helped fund the establishment of the Kutaisi Theatre and the Tbilisi Polytechnical Institute, as well as other institutes of higher education.

Audio version in Geogrian