The language family to which Georgian in the Caucasus belongs. This family is also called South Caucasian, because that's where it's confined to, and apart from Georgian it contains only the minor languages Laz, Svan, and Mingrelian, Laz over the border in Turkey and the latter two within Georgia.

The name comes from the Georgian Kartveli, a Georgian person (and Sakartvelo = Georgia, kartuli ena = Georgian language). Kartvelian is not known to be related to any other language family -- it is certainly not connected with the North Caucasian groups that include Chechen --, but it is often linked into the Nostratic macrofamily by those linguists who believe in that hypothesis.

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