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The evolution of Georgian into a written language was a consequence of the conversion of the Georgian elite to Christianity in the mid-4th century.The new literary language was constructed on an already well-established cultural infrastructure, appropriating the functions, conventions, and status of Aramaic, the literary language of pagan Georgia, and the new national religion.Mkhedruli has 33 letters in common use; a half dozen more are obsolete in Georgian, though still used in other alphabets, like Mingrelian, Laz, and Svan.
This marked the beginning of the modern Georgian language.
Georgian as separate from the other Kartvelian languages would have emerged in the 1st millennium BC in the area known later as the Kingdom of Iberia.
The earliest allusion to spoken Georgian may be a passage of the Roman grammarian Marcus Cornelius Fronto in the 2nd century: Fronto imagines the Iberians addressing the emperor Marcus Aurelius in their "incomprehensible tongue".
There are now three Georgian scripts, called asomtavruli "capitals", Nuskhuri "small letters", and mkhedruli.
The first two are used together as upper and lower case in the writings of the Georgian Orthodox Church and together are called Khutsuri "priests' [alphabet]". Sometimes, however, a capital-like effect, called Mtavruli, "title" or "heading", is achieved by modifying the letters so that their vertical sizes are identical and they rest on the baseline with no descenders.
Dialects of Georgian are from Imereti, Racha-Lechkhumi, Guria, Adjara, Imerkhevi (in Turkey), Kartli, Kakheti, Saingilo (in Azerbaijan), Tusheti, Khevsureti, Khevi, Pshavi, Fereydan (in Iran), Mtiuleti and Meskheti.