Alexandreia or Alexandria (Greek: Αλεξάνδρεια, Aleksándreia. Its population was 14,821 at the 2011 census. Alexandreia is a developing city focusing to boost its economy through agriculture, alternative tourism and other alternative actions. Alexandreia is a located in the vast plain north of the river Aliakmonas and west of the river Axios, named Kampania or Roumlouki, its economy is chiefly based on the agricultural utilization of the surrounding fields. The area around Alexandreia has the greatest production of peaches in Greece and apples, pears and cotton are grown at large, its elevation is 10 m above mean sea level. Alexandreia is 23 km northeast of Veroia and 42 km west of Thessaloniki. Alexandreia has a railway station on the railway from Thessaloniki to Florina; the Platy railway station on the important railway from Thessaloniki to Athens is situated in the municipality of Alexandreia. The motorways A2 and A1 pass through the municipality; the Greek National Roads EO1 and EO4 pass through the town.
The municipality Alexandreia was formed at the 2011 local government reform by the merger of the following 4 former municipalities, that became municipal units: Alexandreia Antigonides Meliki PlatyThe municipality has an area of 478.825 km2, the municipal unit 140.614 km2. The area where Alexandreia is located today is called Imathia, the name of the prefecture, but it is known as Kampania or Roumlouki; the area was conquered by the Ottoman Empire during the late 14th century and was called Roumlouki by the Ottomans. The first possible mention of Alexandreia as a settlement in history was on a Tapu Tahrir of 1530 under the name of Kato-Gode. However, the same name is absent from a map of the area from 1650; the first solid evidence of a settlement is in an Ottoman tax list of 1771, which records the settlement of Gidas as the feudal estate of the family of Gazi Evrenos. According to this tax list, Gidas would be charged with 1900 aspers, which would render it the largest village in the area at that time with a probable population of 400 people.
There are numerous mentions of Gidas in the following centuries, including the visit of the local Church of St. Athanasios by Cosmas the Aetolian in 1775 as a part of his missionary tours. According to the references and descriptions of Gidas during this period, it was the largest village in the area of Roumlouki, although the area was sparsely populated throughout the centuries. Since the local people were subjugated to the Ottomans, they were charged with heavy taxes, which varied from period to period according to the taxation in the Ottoman empire, as a consequence there was a general resentment towards the Ottomans; the local people were allowed to keep their religion and language, they were Orthodox Christians and spoke the Greek language, although many people turned into Muslims so that they could gain the special privileges granted to Muslims. By being a rural area as well as a feudal property, it meant that the people of Gidas were peasants and animal husbandmen, although there were merchants trading all local kinds of commodities, there was a school.
Regarding the historical context in Greece during this period, in 1821, the Greek War of Independence broke out in Peloponnese, by 1832, was an independent state and nation, after 400 years. However, Macedonia was not liberated until the First Balkan War in 1912-1913. During the 19th century, the economic ascent of Thessaloniki and of the other urban centers of Macedonia coincided with the cultural and political renaissance of the Greeks; the ideals and patriotic songs of liberated Greece had made a profound impression upon the Macedonians. However, it was not until the end of the century that the revolutionary fervor of the southern Greeks started spreading to these parts. Meanwhile, the Ottomans had resorted to military rule, which provoked further resistance, led to economic dislocation and accelerated population decline. Ottoman landholdings fiefs held directly from the Sultan, became hereditary estates, which could be sold or bequeathed to heirs; the new class of Ottoman landlords reduced the Greek farmers to serfdom, leading to depopulation of the plains, to the escape of many people to the mountains, to usury, in order to escape poverty.
Despite the general agitations in Greece and Macedonia as well as the redeployment of Slavic and Albanian forces and populations in the area, the Greeks living in Roumlouki were isolated and secured from the outer conflicts, as thus they preserved their folksy lifestyle, their morals and customs and their costumes. As far as Gidas is concerned, in the first half of the 19th century, reports of Gidas are rare. In his work Travels in Northern Greece, Topographer William Martin Leake mentioned travelling from Thessaloniki, through Jedha, on his way to Veroia in 1806, setting Gidas as a location within the route Thessaloniki-Veroia. In 1812, physician Sir Henry Holland confirmed the existence of Gidas as a settlement, while travelling over the same route. Reports of Gidas are richer at the end of the century; the 1875's Ottoman cadastre refers to the Chiflik of Gidahor with an area of 19.328 acres. The owner of the chiflik from 1875 to 1898 was Pasha Mehmed Şefik, a distant descendent of Gazi Evrenos.
From that cadastre, it is known that at least 150 families, of farmers and shepherds, resided in Gidas, there were a few shops and an inn, meeting the needs of the dwellers and travelers. In the years that followed after the found
Edessa, is a city in northern Greece and the capital of the Pella regional unit, in the Central Macedonia region of Greece. It was the capital of the defunct province of the same name. Edessa holds a special place in the history of the Greek world as, according to some ancient sources, it was here that Caranus established the first capital of ancient Macedon. Under the Byzantine Empire, Edessa benefited from its strategic location, controlling the Via Egnatia as it enters the Pindus mountains, became a center of medieval Greek culture, famed for its strong walls and fortifications. In the modern period, Edessa was one of Greece's industrial centers until the middle of the 20th century, with many textile factories operating in the city and its immediate vicinity. Today however its economy relies on services and tourism. Edessa hosts most of the administrative services of the Pella regional unit, as well as some departments of the Thessaloniki-based University of Macedonia; the Greek name Ἔδεσσα means "tower in the water" and is thought to be of Phrygian origin, although a minority of scholars consider it to be Illyrian instead.
The Slavic name Vodĭnŭ was first attested in the 10th century, became the common name until the 20th century. Vodená was the name used in Greek until 1923; the Bulgarian and Macedonian name remains Voden. In Turkish, the city is known as Vodina, in Aromanian the city is known as either Edessa, Vudena or Vodina. Seleucus I Nicator named the city of Edessa in Mesopotamia after the Macedonian Edessa; the municipality Edessa was formed at the 2011 local government reform by the merger of the following 2 former municipalities, that became municipal units: Edessa VegoritidaThe municipality has an area of 611.212 km2, the municipal unit 321.225 km2. According to some ancient writers, the legendary founder of the Argead Dynasty, established the city of Edessa and made it the first capital of ancient Macedon, Argead rulers moved Macedon's capital to Aegae and Pella. Archaeological remains have been discovered on the site of ancient Edessa, just below the modern city; the walls and many buildings have been unearthed so far.
A colonnade with inscription in Greek dates from Roman times. The city achieved certain prominence in the first centuries AD. From 27 BC to 268 AD it had its own mint; the Orthodox Christian Saint Vassa and her three children were put to death here in the 3rd century AD. Little is known about the fate of the city after 500 AD, but we know that its Greek bishop, participated in the Ecumenical Council of 692; the city disappears from the sources thereafter, re-emerges only in the 11th century, in the account of the Bulgarian wars of Emperor Basil II by the chronicler John Skylitzes, with the Slavic name Vodena held to derive from the Slavic word for "water". The Bulgarian historian Vasil Zlatarski hypothesized that it was Vodena, not Vidin on the Danube, a base of the Cometopuli in their revolt against Byzantium. Due to its strategic location, controlling the Via Egnatia as it enters the Pindus mountains, the town was much fought over in the subsequent centuries: the Normans under Bohemond I captured it in 1083, but were repelled by the forces of Emperor Alexios I Komnenos.
The Nicaean emperor John III Vatatzes captured in 1253, while in the mid-14th century its possession was disputed between the Byzantines and the Serbs under Stephen Dushan, with the latter securing its possession in January 1351. The city was for some time under control of Radoslav Hlapen, who gave it as dowry to his son-in-law Nikola Bagaš around 1366/7; the city remained in Bagaš's hands at least until 1385. It fell to the Ottoman war leader Evrenos Bey in the late 14th century, along with the rest of Macedonia. During the period of Ottoman rule, the Turkish and Muslim component of the town's population increased. From the 1860s onwards, the town was a flashpoint for clashes between Bulgarians. After 500 years of Ottoman rule, Edessa was annexed by Greece on 18 October 1912 during the First Balkan War, following the Hellenic Army's military victory against the Ottomans in the battle of Sarantaporo. At that time, Edessa was well on its way to becoming a major industrial center in Macedonia. Four large textile factories with the Hemp Factory being the biggest, employing the abundant waterfalls as a source of energy.
Prior to World War I, in addition to Greeks, the region of Edessa was populated by Turks, Bulgarians and Vlachs, but during the population exchange between Greece and Turkey most of the Turks and Pomaks living in Edessa were transferred to Turkey. Large numbers of Greek refugees from Asia Minor were settled in the area in 1923; the population swelled from 9,441 to 13,115 in the 1920s. A large segment of the population specialized in silk production, allowing Edessa to enjoy a high standard of living in the interwar period; the town suffered during the last days of German occupation of Greece in 1944. As a retaliation for the shooting of one soldier by resistance fighters, the Nazis set Edessa on fire. Half of the city, including the Cathedral and the First Primary School, was destroyed and thousands of people were left homeless. During the Greek Civil War Edessa was twice attacked in 1948 by the Democratic Army of Greece, under the control of the Communist Party of Greece; the Slavic-Macedonian National Liberation Front s
Naousa The Heroic City of Naousa is a city in the Imathia regional unit of Macedonia, Greece with a population of 21,139. An industrial center since the 19th century, for most of the 20th century the history of Naousa was intertwined with that of the Lanaras family, local industrialists who, at the height of their influence, employed half of Naousa's population in their textile factories; the Lanaras family built hospitals, social centers etc. while streets of Naousa were named after family members. In the 1990s and 2000s however, most of the local factories closed, leaving Naousa with a serious unemployment problem; the municipality Naousa was formed at the 2011 local government reform by the merger of the following 3 former municipalities, that became municipal units: Anthemia Eirinoupoli NaousaThe municipality has an area of 425.491 km2, the municipal unit 300.891 km2. The province of Naousa was one of the provinces of Imathia, it had the same territory as the present municipality. It was abolished in 2006.
The city is situated in ancient Emathia west of the ancient Macedonian town of Mieza and the site of ancient School of Aristotle. The area, according to Herodotus, was. In the current position of the city, the Romans established the colony of Nova Augusta; the name changed through the centuries to Niagusta and Niaousa, until it became today's Naousa. It was known as "Ağustos" during Ottoman rule. In 1705, an armatolos named. In 1822, during the Greek War of Independence, the fighting in Central Macedonia against the Turks came to a dramatic finale in Naousa. Abdul Abud, the Pasha of Thessaloniki, arrived on 14 March at the head of a 16,000 strong force and 12 cannons; the Greeks defended Naousa with a force of 4,000 under Anastasios Karatasos, Dimitrios Karatasos, Aggelis Gatsos and Philippos, the son of Zafeirakis Theodosiou, under the overall command of Zafeirakis Theodosiou and Anastasios Karatasos. The Turks attempted to take the town of Naousa on 16 March, again on 18 and 19 March, without success.
On 24 March the Turks began a bombardment of the city walls. After requests for the town's surrender were dismissed by the Greeks, the Turks charged the Gate of St George on Good Friday, 31 March; the Turkish attack failed but on 6 April, after receiving fresh reinforcements of some 3,000 men, the Turkish army overcame the Greek resistance and entered the city. In an infamous incident, as the rebels were abandoning the town, some of the women left behind committed suicide by falling down a cliff over the small river Arapitsa. Zafeirakis Theodosiou was killed; the other Greek leaders retreated southwards. Abdul Abud laid; the fall and massacre of Naousa marked the end of the Greek Revolution in Central Macedonia. Naousa has a large population of Aromanians known as Vlachs, a small Romani population. Naousa is located in Northwestern Imathia, 22 kilometers north of Veroia and 90 kilometers east of Thessaloniki, the biggest city in Northern Greece; the city lies on the eastern foothills of Vermio Mountains, one of the biggest mountain ranges in Greece, west to the plain of Kambania.
Naousa is today the largest forest-owning municipality in the country being surrounded by orchards, producing peaches, apples and other fruits, while the jam brand name Naousa is well-known all over Greece. Naousa is known for its parks and for its ski resorts. Due to its location, altitude can raise by as much as 150m between the lowest and highest parts of the city, it reaches nearly 550m in the Park of Saint Nicholas. Naousa is home of one of the three female named Greek rivers, together with Neda in Peloponnesus and Erkyna in Livadia. Naousa has a humid subtropical climate in the Köppen climate classification but due to its inland location and elevation, is more continental than that found in most Greek cities, it is influenced by the mountains which rise up to the west, by the plain of Kambania to the east. On one hand, the mountains shelter the area from cold winds blowing from the north and west down the Balkan Peninsula and from hot southwest winds, creating a non-extreme microclimate.
On the other they create föhn winds, which draw in damp air from the Aegean coast. The annual precipitation of Naousa is lower than in western Greece, but it is one of the highest in the Macedonia region, measuring around 710 mm per year. Winters can be cold and Vermio mountains are home to two of the most famous skiing resorts in Greece, Seli and 3-5 Pigadia. In the city, snowfall is not uncommon and measurable amounts of snow can remain on the ground for several days. Downtown Naousa experiences milder winter temperatures than the suburbs where temperatures can drop many degrees below zero. Recent years have been a lot warmer and the 2007 European heat wave saw Naousa reaching 40°C for the first time in recent memory, with an absolute maximum of 41.3°C in July 25th. In January 8th, 2017, temperature dropped to -10.5°C, a 10-year low. Naoussa is served by Naousa railway station on the Thessaloniki-Florina line. Inaugurated in 1894, it connects the rest of Northern Greece. Since 2009, it is served by the suburban services to Edessa.
Skiing club EOS Naousas is the oldest of the city's sporting clubs, havi
Kilkis is an industrial city in Central Macedonia, Greece. As of 2011 there were 22,914 people living in the city proper, 28,745 people living in the municipal unit, 51,926 in the municipality of Kilkis, it is the capital city of the regional unit of Kilkis. Kilkis is located in a region, multi-ethnic in the recent past and is known by several different names; the name of the city in Roman times was Callicum. In the early Byzantine times was called Kallikon, was known as Kalkis or Kilkis by the Greeks. In Macedonian and Bulgarian, it is known as Kukush. In a Greek church Codix of 1732 it is mentioned as Kilkisi. While in a Slavic church Codix from 1741 it is mentioned as Kukosh, it was called Kılkış by the Ottomans. The municipality Kilkis was formed at the 2011 local government reform by the merger of the following 7 former municipalities, that became municipal units: Cherso Doirani Gallikos Kilkis Kroussa Mouries PikrolimniThe municipality has an area of 1,599.604 km2, the municipal unit 319.834 km2.
The municipal unit Kilkis consists of the following communities: Kilkis Chorygi Efkarpia Kastanies Kristoni Leipsydrio Megali Vrysi Melanthio Messiano Stavrochori Vaptistis The province of Kilkis was one of the provinces of the Kilkis Prefecture. Its territory corresponded with that of the current municipality Kilkis, the municipal unit Polykastro, it was abolished in 2006. Findings dating back to as early as the Bronze and Iron Age have been excavated in the vicinity of Kilkis, including ancient tombs of the 2nd millennium BC. In classical antiquity, the wider region of Kilkis was ruled by the kingdom of Macedon. At the time, Kilkis was in the center of a region called Krestonia; when Phillip II of Macedon visited Krestonia, the locals offered him olives from Krestonia valley, something that he had never eaten before. At that time, many towns flourished in the region, such as Idomeni, Gortynia, Terpillos, Vragylos, Chaetae, Bairos, Doveros and Kallindria. In 148 BC, the Romans took over the area.
In late antiquity the area of Kilkis saw invasions of different tribes, such as the Goths, the Huns, the Avars and the Slavs, some of whom settled in the Balkan Peninsula. In the Middle Ages, Kilkis changed hands several times between the Bulgarian Empires. In the 10th century, it was sacked by the Bulgarians, some of the inhabitants moved to Calabria, in southern Italy, where they founded the village of Gallicianò. During the reign of the Palaeologus dynasty, the region saw the completion of a number of important infrastructure works; the period of prosperity ended in 1430, when Thessalonica and the entire region of Macedonia came under Ottoman rule. In the first half of the 18th century, Kukush was known as a village. After 1850, there was one Greek church, "Panagia tou Kilkis", at the foot of Saint George hill and one Greek school. In 1840-1872 the Bulgarian enlighters Dimitar Miladinov, Andronik Yosifchev, Rayko Zhinzifov and Kuzman Shapkarev were teachers in the local school. By the mid-19th century Kilkis was a Bulgarian-populated town.
According to one estimate, there were about 500 Greeks, 500 Turks and 4500 Bulgarians in the town at the time. An 1873 Ottoman study concluded that the population of Kilkis consisted of 1,170 households of which there were 5,235 Bulgarian inhabitants, 155 Muslims and 40 Romani people. A Vasil Kanchov study of 1900 counted 7,000 Bulgarian and 750 Turkish inhabitants in the town. Another survey in 1905 established the presence of 9,712 Exarchists, 40 Patriarchists, 592 Uniate Christians and 16 Protestants. In the late 19th and early 20th century, Kilkis was part of the Salonica Vilayet of the Ottoman Empire. In 1893-1908, the Bulgarian inhabitants of the town participated in the activities of Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization; the leader of IMRO Gotse Delchev was born in Kilkis. In 1904–1908, the Greek inhabitants of Kilkis participated in the Macedonian Struggle; the leaders of Greek efforts were Georgios Samaras, Ioannis Doiranlis and Petros Koukidis with their armed corps. Evangelia Traianou-Tzoukou and Ekaterini Stampouli were the leaders for the Greek education and hospitalization of Macedonian fighters.
Great support to the Greek efforts was given by the Chatziapostolou family. The Chatziapostolou family owned a great farm in Metalliko, the field crop of, completely given to fund the Greek efforts; the farm served a shelter for the Macedonian fighters. During the First Balkan War of 1912, the Ottoman Empire was defeated by the Balkan League and forced to concede all of its European territories, leaving Kilkis within the new boundaries of Bulgaria. In the Second Balkan War of 1913, the Greek army captured the city from the Bulgarians after the three-day Battle of Kilkis-Lahanas between June 19 and June 21; the battle was costly, with over 7,000 on the Bulgarian side. The significance of the Battle of Kilkis-Lahanas can be appreciated by the fact that Greece named a battleship after the city, the Kilkís. Kilkis was completely destroyed by the Greek Army after the battle and all of its 13,000 pre-war Bul
Pella is a village and a municipality in the Pella regional unit of Macedonia, Greece. It is located on the site of ancient Pella, the capital of the Kingdom of Macedonia and birthplace of Alexander The Great; the capital of the municipality is the largest town of the regional unit. On the site of the ancient city of Pella is the Archaeological Museum of Pella. During the Byzantine and Ottoman periods, the town was known in Greek as Άγιοι Απόστολοι'Holy Apostles' and in Ottoman Turkish as Allah Kilise'God's Church'. In the local Slavic language, the name is Postol; the name Pella was revived in 1926. Ancient Pella was a vast city. However, the city lost its significance. By the 19th century, Agii Apostoli occupied a site near the upper city, the lower city extended down to the wetlands of Mavroneri. Félix de Beaujour, a French consul of Thessaloniki at the end of the 18th century, wrote in his travels for the Ottoman Empire: "Pella rises amphitheatrically on the slope of a hill on the top of, the fortress, at the present is a little village of Alla Klise, populated with Bulgarian Christians."The village joined the Bulgarian exarchate and a survey by Vasil Kanchov in 1900 revealed that the population of Pella was 520 Bulgarian exarchists.
Another survey in 1905 recorded. The municipality Pella was formed at the 2011 local government reform by the merger of the following 5 former municipalities, that became municipal units: Giannitsa Krya Vrysi Kyrros Megas Alexandros PellaThe municipality has an area of 669.220 km2, the municipal unit 113.819 km2. The municipality has a population of 63,122; the capital of the municipality of Pella is Giannitsa. Other towns are Krya Vrysi, Pella, Karyotissa, Ampeleíai, Melíssion, Pentaplátanon, Paralímni. Alexander the Great King of Macedon who created the biggest Greek empire that existed. Philip II of Macedon Father of Alexander the great and king of Macedon from 359 BC until his assassination in 336 BC. Krste Misirkov and publicist
Thessaloniki familiarly known as Thessalonica, Salonica or Salonika, is the second-largest city in Greece, with over 1 million inhabitants in its metropolitan area, the capital of Greek Macedonia, the administrative region of Central Macedonia and the Decentralized Administration of Macedonia and Thrace. Its nickname is η Συμπρωτεύουσα "the co-capital", a reference to its historical status as the Συμβασιλεύουσα or "co-reigning" city of the Eastern Roman Empire, alongside Constantinople. Thessaloniki is located at the northwest corner of the Aegean Sea, it is bounded on the west by the delta of the Axios/Vardar. The municipality of Thessaloniki, the historical center, had a population of 325,182 in 2011, while the Thessaloniki Urban Area had a population of 824,676 and the Thessaloniki Metropolitan Area had 1,030,338 inhabitants in 2011, it is Greece's second major economic, industrial and political centre. The city is renowned for its festivals and vibrant cultural life in general, is considered to be Greece's cultural capital.
Events such as the Thessaloniki International Fair and the Thessaloniki International Film Festival are held annually, while the city hosts the largest bi-annual meeting of the Greek diaspora. Thessaloniki was the 2014 European Youth Capital; the city of Thessaloniki was founded in 315 BC by Cassander of Macedon. An important metropolis by the Roman period, Thessaloniki was the second largest and wealthiest city of the Byzantine Empire, it was conquered by the Ottomans in 1430, passed from the Ottoman Empire to Greece on 8 November 1912. It is home to numerous notable Byzantine monuments, including the Paleochristian and Byzantine monuments of Thessaloniki, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, as well as several Roman and Sephardic Jewish structures; the city's main university, Aristotle University, is the largest in Greece and the Balkans. Thessaloniki is a popular tourist destination in Greece. In 2013, National Geographic Magazine included Thessaloniki in its top tourist destinations worldwide, while in 2014 Financial Times FDI magazine declared Thessaloniki as the best mid-sized European city of the future for human capital and lifestyle.
Among street photographers, the center of Thessaloniki is considered the most popular destination for street photography in Greece. The original name of the city was Θεσσαλονίκη Thessaloníkē, it was named after princess Thessalonike of Macedon, the half sister of Alexander the Great, whose name means "Thessalian victory", from Θεσσαλός'Thessalos', Νίκη'victory', honoring the Macedonian victory at the Battle of Crocus Field. Minor variants are found, including Θετταλονίκη Thettaloníkē, Θεσσαλονίκεια Thessaloníkeia, Θεσσαλονείκη Thessaloneíkē, Θεσσαλονικέων Thessalonikéōn; the name Σαλονίκη Saloníki is first attested in Greek in the Chronicle of the Morea, is common in folk songs, but it must have originated earlier, as al-Idrisi called it Salunik in the 12th century. It is the basis for the city's name in other languages: Солѹнь in Old Church Slavonic, סלוניקה in Ladino, Selânik سلانیك in Ottoman Turkish and Selanik in modern Turkish, Salonicco in Italian, Solun or Солун in the local and neighboring South Slavic languages, Салоники in Russian, Sãrunã in Aromanian, Salonica or Salonika in English.
Thessaloniki was revived as the city's official name in 1912, when it joined the Kingdom of Greece during the Balkan Wars. In local speech, the city's name is pronounced with a dark and deep L characteristic of Modern Macedonian accent; the name is abbreviated as Θεσ/νίκη. The city was founded around 315 BC by the King Cassander of Macedon, on or near the site of the ancient town of Therma and 26 other local villages, he named it after his wife Thessalonike, a half-sister of Alexander the Great and princess of Macedonia as daughter of Philip II. Under the kingdom of Macedonia the city retained its own autonomy and parliament and evolved to become the most important city in Macedonia. After the fall of the Kingdom of Macedonia in 168 BC, in 148 BC Thessalonica was made the capital of the Roman province of Macedonia. Thessalonica became a free city of the Roman Republic under Mark Antony in 41 BC, it grew to be an important trade-hub located on the Via Egnatia, the road connecting Dyrrhachium with Byzantium, which facilitated trade between Thessaloniki and great centers of commerce such as Rome and Byzantium.
Thessaloniki lay at the southern end of the main north-south route through the Balkans along the valleys of the Morava and Axios river valleys, thereby linking the Balkans with the rest of Greece. The city became the capital of one of the four Roman districts of Macedonia, it became the capital of all the Greek provinces of the Roman Empire because of the city's importance in the Balkan peninsula. At the time of the Roman Empire, about 50 A. D. Thessaloniki was one of the early centers of Christianity. Paul wrote two letters to the new church at Thessaloniki, preserved in the Biblical canon as First and Second Thessalonians; some scholars hold that the First Epistle to the Thessalonians is the first written book of the New Testament. In 306 AD, Thessaloniki acquired a patron saint, St. Demetrius, a Christian whom Galerius is said to have put to death. Most scholars
Greece the Hellenic Republic, self-identified and known as Hellas, is a country located in Southern and Southeast Europe, with a population of 11 million as of 2016. Athens is largest city, followed by Thessaloniki. Greece is located at the crossroads of Europe and Africa. Situated on the southern tip of the Balkan Peninsula, it shares land borders with Albania to the northwest, North Macedonia and Bulgaria to the north, Turkey to the northeast; the Aegean Sea lies to the east of the mainland, the Ionian Sea to the west, the Cretan Sea and the Mediterranean Sea to the south. Greece has the longest coastline on the Mediterranean Basin and the 11th longest coastline in the world at 13,676 km in length, featuring a large number of islands, of which 227 are inhabited. Eighty percent of Greece is mountainous, with Mount Olympus being the highest peak at 2,918 metres; the country consists of nine geographic regions: Macedonia, Central Greece, the Peloponnese, Epirus, the Aegean Islands, Thrace and the Ionian Islands.
Greece is considered the cradle of Western civilisation, being the birthplace of democracy, Western philosophy, Western literature, political science, major scientific and mathematical principles, Western drama and notably the Olympic Games. From the eighth century BC, the Greeks were organised into various independent city-states, known as poleis, which spanned the entire Mediterranean region and the Black Sea. Philip of Macedon united most of the Greek mainland in the fourth century BC, with his son Alexander the Great conquering much of the ancient world, from the eastern Mediterranean to India. Greece was annexed by Rome in the second century BC, becoming an integral part of the Roman Empire and its successor, the Byzantine Empire, in which Greek language and culture were dominant. Rooted in the first century A. D. the Greek Orthodox Church helped shape modern Greek identity and transmitted Greek traditions to the wider Orthodox World. Falling under Ottoman dominion in the mid-15th century, the modern nation state of Greece emerged in 1830 following a war of independence.
Greece's rich historical legacy is reflected by its 18 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The sovereign state of Greece is a unitary parliamentary republic and developed country with an advanced high-income economy, a high quality of life, a high standard of living. A founding member of the United Nations, Greece was the tenth member to join the European Communities and has been part of the Eurozone since 2001, it is a member of numerous other international institutions, including the Council of Europe, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the World Trade Organization, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the Organisation internationale de la Francophonie. Greece's unique cultural heritage, large tourism industry, prominent shipping sector and geostrategic importance classify it as a middle power, it is the largest economy in the Balkans. The names for the nation of Greece and the Greek people differ from the names used in other languages and cultures.
The Greek name of the country is Hellas or Ellada, its official name is the Hellenic Republic. In English, the country is called Greece, which comes from Latin Graecia and means'the land of the Greeks'; the earliest evidence of the presence of human ancestors in the southern Balkans, dated to 270,000 BC, is to be found in the Petralona cave, in the Greek province of Macedonia. All three stages of the stone age are represented for example in the Franchthi Cave. Neolithic settlements in Greece, dating from the 7th millennium BC, are the oldest in Europe by several centuries, as Greece lies on the route via which farming spread from the Near East to Europe. Greece is home to the first advanced civilizations in Europe and is considered the birthplace of Western civilisation, beginning with the Cycladic civilization on the islands of the Aegean Sea at around 3200 BC, the Minoan civilization in Crete, the Mycenaean civilization on the mainland; these civilizations possessed writing, the Minoans writing in an undeciphered script known as Linear A, the Mycenaeans in Linear B, an early form of Greek.
The Mycenaeans absorbed the Minoans, but collapsed violently around 1200 BC, during a time of regional upheaval known as the Bronze Age collapse. This ushered from which written records are absent. Though the unearthed Linear B texts are too fragmentary for the reconstruction of the political landscape and can't support the existence of a larger state contemporary Hittite and Egyptian records suggest the presence of a single state under a "Great King" based in mainland Greece; the end of the Dark Ages is traditionally dated to the year of the first Olympic Games. The Iliad and the Odyssey, the foundational texts of Western literature, are believed to have been composed by Homer in the 7th or 8th centuries BC. With the end of the Dark Ages, there emerged various kingdoms and city-states across the Greek peninsula, which spread to the shores of the Black Sea, So