The General Map of Georgia fragment via the World Digital Library and Bathscapes.

A decade after taking much of the South Caucasus from the Persian Empire, the Russian government produced a detailed map of the region known as the “General Map of Georgia” (Carte Générale de la Géorgie). In 1827 it was included in the “Geographic Atlas of the Russian Empire, Polish Kingdom and Great Duchy of Finland” prepared by military cartographer Vasily Pyadyshev.

The map was based on the surveys conducted after the Gulistan Treaty of 1813 that included Karabakh, Zangezur, Tavush, Lori and Shirak into the Russian Empire and while Yerevan, the Ararat Valley, Nakhichevan and the area of Lake Sevan were still part of Iran.

The Karabakh fragment (shown) includes the towns of Shushi (Choucha) and Goris (Goriusy), as well as monasteries of Tatev (Tatif) and Amaras (Akhouglan), fortresses of Tigranakert (Chakh Boulak), Askeran (Askeran Godjaly), Berdashen (Karakent) and Avetaranots (Tchinakhtchi).

The “Greater Georgia” map was drafted at the time of growing international interest in the Caucasus region, reflected in emergence of travel reporting such as that of George Keppel.

A significant cartographic effort to describe the Caucasus was made a century earlier by Georgian prince and scholar Vakhushti Bagrationi, who identified the mountainous portion of Karabakh as Masisi and Sisiani.