Vol. 14 (2020): XIV International Symposium Contemporary Issues of Literary Studies : The Silk Road Countries` Folklore
Myth, Ritual and Symbol in Folklore and Literature

„The Wishing Tree“ – Names and Characters

Zaza Abzianidze
Shota Rustaveli Institute of Georgian Literature

Published 2020-10-20


  • Giorgi Leonidze,
  • The Wishing Tree,
  • Onomastics


The characters of Giorgi Leonidze’s prose masterpiece “The Wishing Tree” turn a Kakhetian village into a model for the whole world: its wise men and fools, traditionalists and anarchists, idealists and pragmatists…

Ontology of name, since Aristotle, seeks metaphysical relation between name and fate. Leonidze’s characters’ names’ symbolic correspondence with their biographies seems to imply his belief in this “onomastic mysticism.”

Even if not one of the names and nicknames in the book was Leonidze’s invention, reader would still be indebted to him for preserving this treasure. The “characters” themselves have made their “carver” the master of contemporary Georgian prose.