A field study of the neotectonics of the Georgian Caucasus is combined with geophysical, geodetic and geological information in order to obtain a mechanical model of actual deformation. The analysis of satellite photos together with topographical and geological maps shows that the Great Caucasus is bisected by a NNE-trending sinistral strike-slip fault zone. The western Great Caucasus is thrusted to the south over the Rioni basin; while, on the other hand, its northern flank is a monocline that descends gently into the Russian Platform. Active volcanism is present from Elbruz to Kazbeg. The eastern Great Caucasus is limited by thrusts to the north and to the south, and intermediate structures are disposed in a fan-like shape. No recent volcanism is observed. The eastern limit of the chain is a NNW-trending dextral strike-slip fault zone. Seismicity from a local network illustrates the activity of the thrusts and gives evidence for the strike-slip faults. Microtectonic data confirm the recent activity and the sinistral character of the Borjomi-Kazbeg strike-slip fault. The strike-slip faults bordering the eastern Caucasus may be seen as the limits of a plastic wedge in front of the Arabian Plate, at an early stage of continental collision.