The early history of Tbilisi is a little shady, but archeological findings prove that humans may have inhabited the area as many as 6000 years ago.  However, the first history recorded by humans comes only around the 4th century A.D.

            The general area around Tbilisi, up until the 5th century A.D. looked much different than it does today.  Dense forest-lands covered most of the area, and only upon the discovery of the many hot sulfur springs around the area was it decided to build a settlement.  There are many theories about who discovered the hot springs, but it is sure to say that Tbilisi was build as a result of the springs.  During the 4th century, there was a military fort in the area, and after it fell, King Kartli (of Georgia) decided to build Tbilisi.

            Over the following 500 years, the city of Tbilisi was occupied and ruled by many of the region’s major powers.  The development and wellbeing of the city greatly depended on the occupying power at the time.

            During the 12th and early 13th centuries, Tbilisi and Georgia went through what is known as their Golden Age, during which time the country was a major economical power, and was considered the cultural and literary center of the region. 

            At the beginning of the 13th century, Mongol armies invaded and took control of Tbilisi, ending the city’s Golden Age of prosperity.  The Mongol rule lasted a little more than 100 years.

            For more information, including the history leading to present times, check out this detailed history of Tbilisi.