Archive for the ‘history’ Category

Some Photos of the statue of Cervantes at the old port of Nafpaktos / Lepanto from my recent Visit to the Old Port.

Military service and captivity

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Statue of Miguel de Cervantes at the harbour of Naupactus (Lepanto)

The reasons that forced Cervantes to leave Spain remain uncertain. Possible reasons include that he was a “student” of the same name, a “sword-wielding fugitive from justice”, or fleeing from a royal warrant of arrest, for having wounded a certain Antonio de Sigura in a duel.[17] Like many young Spanish men who wanted to further their careers, Cervantes left for Italy. In Rome, he focused his attention on Renaissance art, architecture, and poetry – knowledge of Italian literature is discernible in his work. He found “a powerful impetus to revive the contemporary world in light of its accomplishments”.[18][19] Thus, Cervantes’ stay in Italy, as revealed in his later works, might be in part a desire for a return to an earlier period of the Renaissance.[20]

By 1570, Cervantes had enlisted as a soldier in a regiment of the Spanish Navy Marines, Infantería de Marina, stationed in Naples, then a possession of the Spanish crown. He was there for about a year before he saw active service. In September 1571, Cervantes sailed on board the Marquesa, part of the galley fleet of the Holy League (a coalition of Pope Pius V, Spain, the Republic of Venice, the Republic of Genoa, the Duchy of Savoy, the Knights Hospitaller based in Malta, and others, under the command of Philip II of Spain‘s illegitimate half brother, John of Austria) that defeated the Ottoman fleet on October 7 in the Battle of Lepanto, in the Gulf of Patras. Though taken down with fever, Cervantes refused to stay below and asked to be allowed to take part in the battle, saying he would rather die for his God and his king than keep under cover. He fought on board a vessel and received three gunshot wounds – two in the chest and one which rendered his left arm useless. In Journey to Parnassus he was to say that he “had lost the movement of the left hand for the glory of the right” (referring to the success of the first part of Don Quixote). Cervantes looked back on his conduct in the battle with pride: he believed he had taken part in an event that shaped the course of European history.

After the Battle of Lepanto, Cervantes remained in hospital in Messina, Italy, for about six months, before his wounds healed enough to allow his joining the colors again.[21] From 1572 to 1575, based mainly in Naples, he continued his soldier’s life: he participated in expeditions to Corfu and Navarino, and saw the fall of Tunis and La Goulette to the Turks in 1574.[22]:220

On September 6 or 7, 1575, Cervantes set sail on the galley Sol from Naples to Barcelona, with letters of commendation to the king from the Duke of Sessa.[23] On the morning of September 26, as the Sol approached the Catalan coast, it was attacked by Ottoman pirates and he was taken to Algiers, which had become one of the main and most cosmopolitan cities of the Ottoman Empire, and was kept here in captivity between the years of 1575 and 1580.[24] After five years as a slave in Algiers, and four unsuccessful escape attempts, he was ransomed by his parents and the Trinitarians and returned to his family in Madrid. Not surprisingly, this traumatic period of Cervantes’ life supplied subject matter for several of his literary works, notably the Captive’s tale in Don Quixote and the two plays set in Algiers – El trato de Argel (Life in Algiers) and Los baños de Argel (The Dungeons of Algiers) – as well as episodes in a number of other writings, although never in straight autobiographical form.[9]

Photos By Nikolaos Douralas , Text taken from wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miguel_de_Cervantes#Military_service_and_captivity

I recently uncovered some really old photographs, one that caught my eye is a photo from a Greek American cousin of my late Grandfather. His name was Tom Lyberis, in his 1938 trip visiting home he had contributed financially to the project and had taken part in the building process as well. Here is a photo of the building of the Church of Saint Vasilios, of Vasilitsi Messinia. Here you can see the whole village taking part in the building process of the Church.

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The Church as it is now.
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Πολιούχος του χωριού είναι ο Άγιος Βασίλειος. Προς τιμήν του οι Βασιλιτσιώτες έχουν αναγείρει ένα μεγαλοπρεπή λιθόκτιστο ναό βυζαντινού ρυθμού και μεγάλων διαστάσεων, κατά τα πρότυπο του ναού της Υπαπαντής στην Καλαμάτα. Άρχισε να χτίζεται το 1938 και το χτίσιμό του ολοκληρώθηκε σχετικά σύντομα. Στη θέση που χτίστηκε βρισκόταν άλλος μικρότερος ναός από τον οποίο σώζεται σήμερα μόνο η Αγία Τράπεζα. Από την πλατεία της εκκλησίας έχει ωραία θέα τόσο προς τη θάλασσα όσο και προς το βουνό που ορθώνεται απέναντί του.
Το χτίσιμο του ναού αποτελεί πραγματικό άθλο για τους Βασιλιτσιώτες, αν αναλογισθεί κανείς τη χρονική περίοδο και τις συνθήκες κάτω από τις οποίες χτίστηκε. Τις πέτρες για το χτίσιμο του ναού τις κουβαλούσαν οι άνδρες του χωριού με τα γαϊδούρια τους. Το νερό για το σβήσιμο του ασβέστη και για το φτιάξιμο της λάσπης οι γυναίκες από τη βρύση με βαρέλια που ζαλώνονταν στην πλάτη τους. Όλοι τους βοηθούσαν με ευχαρίστηση σ’ ότι μπορούσε ο καθένας. Έτσι, χάρη στη γενναιόδωρη εθελοντική τους προσφορά, κατάφεραν μέσα σε σύντομο χρονικό διάστημα να ανεγείρουν το μεγαλοπρεπή αυτό ναό, αφιέρωμα πίστης και ευσέβειας στον προστάτη τους Άγιο Βασίλειο.
Εσωτερικά ο ναός εντυπωσιάζει όσο και εξωτερικά, λόγω του βυζαντινού ρυθμού με τον οποίο χτίστηκε. Ο εσωτερικός του διάκοσμος είναι καλός και παρά το γεγονός ότι οι τοίχοι του δεν έχουν αγιογραφηθεί ακόμη, σε εντυπωσιάζει η μεγαλοπρέπεια του. Ο φωτισμός του είναι άπλετος και ο παντοκράτορας από τον τρούλο στη μέση του ναού ες παρακολουθεί παντού.

Πηγή Ελληνικού Κειμένου και σύγχρονης φωτογραφίας : http://vasigoulas.blogspot.gr/

On your way up Philopappos you will pass a small cave which is supposed to be the prison of Socrates, but there is no proof of this, and it is much more likely to have been imprisoned in the state prison in the ancient Agora.

During WWII artifacts from the Acropolis and National Archaeological Museum were secreted here, sealed behind a wall.

Jacques-Louis David:1787
The Death of Socrates
, Oil Painting

The many holes on the surface of the rock (see above) were used to sustain wooden beams. There must have been a two- or three-story structure in front of these caves. It is now known when they were made, nor what was the nature of the building

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socrates prison

socrates prison

socrates prison

socrates prison

Most of the time when we see articles or photos of tourist locations such as Koroni Messinia we see the beauty of those places at summer time. Places filled with crowds of tourists, kids and life. How do these places look  when the crowds are gone and the sun is gone?

Trust me beauty is hidden in every corner.

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Koroni Castle March 2016

Koroni Castle March 2016
Garden of Eden

Koroni Castle March 2016
Wild Beauty

Koroni Castle March 2016
The Cross

Koroni Castle March 2016
Angel

Koroni Castle March 2016
Young Lady,Gone 1918

Koroni Castle March 2016
Dionysios Rallis ,Mayor

Koroni Castle March 2016
Against threatening Sky

Koroni Castle March 2016

Koroni Castle March 2016
Heroes

Koroni Castle March 2016
We LIVE ..IN.. History, WE Breath Free..

Read more in my Flickr Album https://www.flickr.com/photos/ndouralas/albums/72157665854532256
 

Ζευς , Zeus, Jesus .Eternal Athens ,Magic Market

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Kynosoura

Kynosoura (Greek: Κυνόσουρα),

Which means dog’s tail (Greek: κυνός-ουρά), ikynosoura peninsulas a small peninsula located in the east of the island. The area probably took its name because it is long and oblong, like a dog’ s tail.

At the south side of area there are a few houses (population 69). At the north are the remains of an ancient tumulus thought to be the burial site of Greek warriors in the Battle of Salamis.

Nearby is a dockyard, which constructs and fixes ships including oil tankers and containers.

A small Video describing the destruction of the ancient tomb and the throwing of the dead heroes bones to the sea.

The Tomb of the Fighters of Salamina 

The Tomb of the Fighters of Salamina is located on the area of cape Kinosoura. The site overlooks the sea on the area where the famous naval battle of Salamis took place in 480 BC. The circular tomb was built using limestone and gravel from sculptor Achilles Vasilleou in honor of the men who fought and died for Greece. It was one of the most important naval battles of all time that determined the final outcome of the Persian Wars. Themistocles developed a plan to fight the battle on a location favoring the smaller faster Greek ships. The Persian fleet was destroyed and the threat to conquer the Peloponnese faded along with it.

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Salamina Kinosoura

Salamina Kinosoura

Salamina Kinosoura

Salamina Kinosoura

Salamina Kinosoura

Salamina Kinosoura

Salamina Kinosoura

Salamina Kinosoura

Salamina Kinosoura

As you can see in the photos its a beautiful place that has been left neglected for many decades that has destroyed or hidden its incredible history and monuments under rusty ships. A place that is part of the world heritage that should not be forgotten or lost.

You can see more photos in my Flickr Album.

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This month I visited with my wife and young son the island of Lesvos. After taking the ship from Piraeus and after a trip of 10 hours we arrived to the post of Mytilene..Mytilene is an ancient city founded in the 11th century BC. Mytilene is the capital and port of the island of Lesbos and also the capital of the North Aegean Region. The seat of governor of the North Aegean Region is Mytilene.

Standing on seven green hills rooted in the heart of the Aegean, spreads the city of Mytilene. Contemporary Mytilene with a population of thirty thousand is built on the ruins of the ancient namesake city, the birthplace of leading intellectual personalities throughout the centuries.The greatest lyrical poets of all times were born here, Sapho (700-600 B.C.) and Alcaeos (640-560 B.C.) as well as Pittacos one of the Seven Sages of antiquity. The intellectual tradition continues to modern days with Odysseas Elytis (1911-1996) winner of the 1979 Nobel Prize for literature. A walk through the picturesque neighborhoods, the Promenade and the traditional commercial street (Hermou) from the Ancient Port in Epano Skala to Kioski and Sourada will convince the visitor of the warm hospitality of the natives and he will admire the exquisite, preserved historical Mansions of various architectural styles. The city is adorned with imposing churches, most distinguishing among them the Metropolis Cathedral with the 33m. Gothic steeple built in the 17th century and the domed church of St. Therapon (1880).

Of much interest is the Monastery of St. Rafael just 12Klm. from Mytilene nestled in the olive groves of Karyes, Thermi. Mytilene is the headquarters of the Ministry of the Aegean and the University of the Aegean. The city has an international airport and harbour which connect the island with Athens, Piraeus, Thessaloniki, Volos, Kavala, Alexandroupoli and the islands of Limnos, Chios, Samos, Icaria, Kos, Rhodes, Crete, etc.

ouzo bottles

Mytilene is famous for it numerous local OUZO distillers, if Ouzo was Wine, Mytilene would be Vourgoundy they say…. and they are right .Mytilene is THE definite Ouzo capital of the world and also the home of the famous sardines. It is a beautiful city full of life and great friendly people. It is very cheap (although the ship tickets are not), and you need at least a week if you want to visit all its notable points of interest.

Please enjoy the photos and if you enjoy them consider visiting this great Greek Island.

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In the old city you can find great examples of last century architecture with elaborate roofs and balconies.

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Visitors of Lesvos Island can travel by ferry from the port of Mytilini on Lesvos to the Turkish port of Ayvalik. In high season, ferries run almost daily between Ayvalik and Mytilini but less frequently at other times of year; usually Thursday is quite busy for the big market (bazaar) and Saturday’s for the smaller version.

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At the port you can see some very expensive yachts from around the world, this one one had a USA flag.

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Street view of the agora with Agio Therapon Church seen in the back.

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Sensational majestic exterior and interior, the church of Agios Therapon is one of the most recognizable monuments in the island, although its history, its present form at least, just over the half century, while inaugurated in 1935.

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We know that by 1850 at the same place there was a small temple dedicated to Saint Therapon also.

The church served the needs of patients and hospital staff, the well-known “hotels” of Mytilene, which was precisely opposite the present church, where is the building that houses the Byzantine Ecclesiastical Mouseio.The basic architectural style of the church is he registered his cross with a dome.

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With the first glance but one realizes that it bears on its outer form many and intense gothic characteristics, the presence of which is probably due to effects received by the Argyris Adalis during his apprenticeship near the two great teachers.

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The exterior decoration is the brainchild of famed painter and sculptor Lesbian Nicholas Kesanli. H diversity of its parts makes it impressive. The church is built of ashlar stones. It is even known that much of the material for the construction of the temple was moved from the famous quarry Sarmosak of Asia Minor. On the façade there are two tiers of columns, Ionic and Corinthian. Five domes crowning the edifice. Each dome supported pediments, which are decorated with paintings and sculptures.

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The woodcut temple is the work of 1915 and created by the hand of a craftsman Mytilene, Demetrios Kovala. He also created the pontifical throne, the pulpit and the two major shrines of the temple. In the nave, between the pontifical throne and shrine, the tomb of Metropolitan Oyngrovlachias Ignatiou, one of the great protagonists of Greek Revolution of 1821. The relic was moved to St. Therapon the church of Agia Triada of Livorno, where the prelate had been buried after his death in Pisa in 1828, and the marble sarcophagus was placed 1965.

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The city is very much alive, busy streets next to the sea.

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The day I visited the city  drag racing was taking place.

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Mytilene is the city of Stratis Mirivilis.

Stratis Myrivilis (Greek: Στράτης Μυριβήλης, pseudonym of Efstratios Stamatopoulos (Ευστράτιος Σταματόπουλος); 30 June 1890 – 19 July 1969) was a Greek writer. He wrote mostly fiction: novels, novellas, and short stories. He is associated with the “Generation of the ’30s”.

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Stratis Mirivilis Statue.

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The city is full of beautiful statues.

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The Statue of Liberty (Greek: Άγαλμα Ελευθερίας) is a bronze statue erected at the harbor of Mytilene on the island of Lesbos in Greece.

The statue was created by Greek sculptor Gregorios Zevgolis based on a design by local painter Georgios Jakobides. It was cast in Germany in 1922, and was erected and dedicated in Mytilene in 1930.

The statue and its marble base stand 15 meters (49 ft) tall.

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The statue of liberty and beneath it dozens of immigrants newly arrived from Turkey.

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More immigrants waiting for the next ship to Piraeus.

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The ship for the trip back to Piraeus.

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Enjoy more photos in my flickr album.

I used NIKON D3200 with lenses NIKON 18-55VR f3.5 & NIKKOR 55-200mm VR