Gyaros locally known as Gioura, is an arid and unpopulated Greek island in the northern Cyclades near the islands of Andros and Tinos, with an area of 23 square kilometres. It is a part of the municipality of Ano Syros, which lies on the island of Syros; this and other small islands of the Aegean Sea served as places of exile for important persons in the early Roman empire. The extremity of its desolation was proverbial among Roman authors, such as Juvenal, it was a place of exile for leftist political dissidents in Greece from 1948 until 1974. At least 22,000 people were imprisoned on the island during that time, it is an island of great ecological importance as it hosts the largest population of monk seal in the Mediterranean. The pseudo-Aristotelian work On Marvellous Things Heard recounts the tale that on Gyaros the mice eat iron. In the Aeneid of Virgil and Mykonos are said to be the two islands to which the god Apollo tied the holy island of Delos to stop its wandering over the Aegean Sea.
In his recounting of the myth of the war between Minos and Aegeus, the king of Athens, the poet Ovid speaks of Gyaros as one island that refused to join the campaign of the Cretan king. In 29 BC, the historian and geographer Strabo had an extended stay on the island, on his way to Corinth. In the 1st century AD, Pliny the Elder wrote in his Natural History that the island, which had a city, was 15 miles in circumference and lay 62 miles from Andros, he records that the inhabitants of Gyaros were once put to flight by mice. The island is mentioned by the Roman orator Cicero, other notable Latin authors, indicating a broad awareness of Gyaros among the educated elite of the 1st century BC to the 2nd century AD; the island served as a place of exile during the early Roman Empire. Writing in the early 2nd century AD, the Roman historian Tacitus records that, when Silanus, the proconsul of the province of Asia was accused of extortion and treason, it had been proposed in the Roman Senate that he be exiled to Gyaros, the Roman Emperor Tiberius allowed him to be sent to the nearby island of Kythnos instead, since Gyaros was "harsh and devoid of human culture".
When confronted with another recommendation to exile a defendant to Gyaros, Tiberius once more declined, noting that the island was deficient in water, that those granted their lives ought to be granted the means to live. The defendant was allowed to go into exile on Amorgos instead; the Roman poet Juvenal, a near-contemporary of Tacitus, mentions this island twice in his Satires: first as a place of exile for vile criminals, second as a symbol of claustrophobic imprisonment. In the second reference, Juvenal compares the restlessness of Alexander the Great to that of a man imprisoned: Under emperor Nero, the philosopher Musonius Rufus was charged guilty for his participation in the Pisonian conspiracy and was banished to Gyara. There is a red brick prison building which during the years 1948 to 1953 held 10,000 men in custody due to their participation in the Greek Resistance organization Ethniko Apeleftherotiko Metopo. Many of them were involved in the Greek civil war. Jehovah's Witnesses were sentenced to exile there as being Christian conscientious objectors.
The prison was used again during the years 1957 to 1964 and during the Greek military junta of 1967-1974. The structures are decaying due to weathering, no maintenance is conducted. In four separate places north of the prison building, there are the ruins of the camps where the men lived in tents, both summer and winter. Once a year, the men and women who are alive and in good health who were imprisoned on the island for their political views, pay tribute by visiting the island and hold a ceremony in the cemetery of the men who left their last breath on this island; the Greek government used the island as a target range for the Hellenic Navy until the year 2000. The island is off-limits for the general public and approaching or fishing in close proximity is forbidden by the coast guard. Fred Ihrt's photos of the concentration camp on Gyaros in 1967 Gyaros Documentation 2014
Anafi, Anaphe, is a Greek island community in the Cyclades. In 2011, it had a population of 271, its land area is 40.370 square kilometres. It lies east of the island of Thíra. Anafi is part of the Thira regional unit. According to mythology, the island was given the name Anafi because Apollo made it appear to the Argonauts as a shelter from a bad storm, using his bow to shed light upon it. If the name of the island derives from this word, means "revelation" Anafi is linked to Delos, an island whose name derives from an ancient Greek word meaning "to reveal". Others say that the name is due to the non-existence of snakes on the island: "an Ophis". Despite its small size, Anafi offers archaeological as well as mythological interest. At the monastery of Panagia Kalamiotisa there are ruins of a temple built as an offering to the god Apollo Aegletus; some of the inscriptions from the island refer to the god Apollo as "asgelatos" ασγελατος, a unique usage, said by some scholars to be a variant of Aigletes, radiant.
However, one scholar links this epithet to a Sumerian goddess of healing and to Apollo's son Asclepius. Ruins can be found at Kasteli, most of the findings, such as the statues, are now located at the "Archaeological Museum" at the Chora, in an small room. In Roman times the island was used as a place of exile. After the Fourth Crusade in 1204, when the Cyclades were taken over by Venetians, Anafi was granted by Marco I Sanudo to Leonardo Foscolo. In the late 1270s, the island was recovered for the Byzantine Empire by Licario and another Italian renegade and native of Anafi, John de lo Cavo, who succeeded Licario as imperial admiral in the Aegean. In 1307 the island was captured by Januli Gozzadini, of Bolognese origin, who established himself as its independent lord. Much the ruler of Anafi, William Crispo, became regent of the Duchy of the Archipelago, leaving Anafi under the control of his daughter Florence. William is said to have built the fortifications above the present village, he is claimed to have built a fortress, sometimes referred to as "Gibitroli", on Mount Kalamos.
In 1481, the island passed to the Pisani family as part of a dowry. The Pisani ruled it until 1537, when the Ottoman admiral Hayreddin Barbarossa raided it and carried off all its inhabitants as slaves; the island was resettled, acquired a set of privileges from the Ottoman court in 1700 in exchange for 500 crowns. Thereafter it was left to fend for itself, except for the annual visit of the Ottoman fleet to collect tribute; the island was visited in 1700 by botanist to the French court. He describes Mount Kalamos as "une des plus effroyables roches qui soit au monde"; some of the ancient remains from the island were acquired by British antiquaries. During the Russo-Turkish War of 1768–1774, it was held and used as a base by the Russian fleet under Alexey Orlov from 1770 until the war's end. During the Greek War of Independence the Anafiots sent "two Caïques of men". Many men left the island to help in the building of Athens as capital city of Greece, from on there was both seasonal and permanent migration, a migrant community grew up in the city.
They built houses for themselves on the slopes of the Acropolis rock, in an area still known as Anafiotika. James Theodore Bent visited the island with his wife in the winter of 1880-81 and gives a vivid description of the island; the island was used as a place of internal exile for criminals and political dissidents from the 1920s onward. Tourism developed in the 1970s after an electricity generator was built in 1974, harbour works were undertaken; the building of paved roads from the late 1980s onwards not only increased tourism but revived the island's agricultural economy. There are numerous publications relating to the island from the mid-1960s and her photographs of the island and migrant communities over the decades since 1966 have been deposited in the Benaki Museum Photographic Archive. Along with its larger neighbour Santorini, Anafi was not counted among the Cyclades by ancient geographers, but among the Sporades; this only changed during the period of Latin rule in the late Middle Ages.
Anafi is much an island for walking. Antonis Kaloyerou has published a walkers' guide to the island, in Greek, profusely illustrated, with detailed instructions and distances. There is a 1:15.000 "hiking map" in Greek and English published by Terrain, no: 318. Through the old paths and around the steep hills, you can walk to the other side of the island; the most popular beaches are Roukounas. A peninsula at the eastern end of the island is dominated by a monolithic peak, Mt. Kalamos, among the largest in the Mediterranean at 420 m. Perched atop this massif is the Kalamiotissa church, rebuilt in large part after an earthquake in the 1950s; the icon from this church was taken, after a storm in 1887, to the church at the foot of Mount Kalamos, built inside the walls of Apollo's temple. The festival associated with this icon is celebrated on the Birth of the Virgin. On the island, the epithe
Skantzoura is an island in the Sporades archipelago, Greek. The island is located 18 km southeast of the larger island of Alonnisos and 31 km northwest of the island Skyros; as of 2011, it had no resident population. Skantzoura is in Zone B of the Alonnisos Marine Park. Anciently, the island was called Skandeira and Scandila. Skantzoura on GTP Travel Pages
Keros (Greek: Κέρος. Administratively it is part of the community of Koufonisia, it has an area of 15 km2 and its highest point is 432 m. It was an important site to the Cycladic civilization that flourished around 2500 BC, it is now forbidden to land in Keros. Keros is noted for the flat-faced Cycladic marble statues which inspired the work of Pablo Picasso and Henry Moore; the "Keros Hoard" is a large deposit of Cycladic figurines, found on the island of Keros. In 2006-2008, the Cambridge Keros Project, co-directed by Colin Renfrew with others, conducted excavations at Kavos on the west coast of the island; this general area is believed to be the source of the so-called "Keros Hoard" of fragmentary Cycladic figurines. The material excavated in 2006-2008 includes Cycladic figurines and other objects made of marble, all broken prior to deposition and most broken elsewhere and brought to Kavos for deposition; the lack of joining fragments shows that only a part of the broken material was deposited here, while ongoing studies of the pottery and other material show that material was brought from multiple sources for deposition here.
In 2007-2008, the same project identified and excavated a substantial Cycladic period settlement on the nearby island of Daskalio. A large area has been excavated, revealing a substantial building 16 metres long and 4 metres wide — the largest from this period in the Cyclades — within, discovered the ‘Daskalio hoard’ comprising a chisel, an axe-adze and a shaft-hole axe of copper or bronze. In addition to excavation, survey of the islet showed that most of its surface — a total of 7000 m2 — was occupied during the Early Bronze Age, making this the largest site in the Cyclades. Specialist studies for the geomorphology, petrology, ceramic petrology and environmental aspects ensued. In 2012, the activities at this site were dated 2750 to 2300 BC, which precedes any identified worship of gods in the Aegean. In 2018, excavations revealed the remains of massive terraced walls and giant gleaming structures on a tiny islet, once attached to Keros; the structures were built using 1,000 tons of stone, turning the headland, which measures just 500 ft across, into a single, giant'pyramid'.
Beneath the pyramid, researchers found evidence of a complex drainage tunnels and traces of advanced metalworking. The researchers say the remains make the island one of the most impressive archaeological sites of the Aegean Sea during the Early Bronze Age; the excavations show that the headland of Dhaskalio, once attached to Keros but is now a tiny islet because of sea level rise, was entirely covered by remarkable monuments. Keros-Syros culture is named after the two islands in the Cyclades -- Syros; this culture flourished during the Early Cycladic II period. Some of the best preserved sites of this culture are at Ios, located not far from Keros; some of the important artifacts of this culture are the so-called frying pans – shallow circular vessels or bowls with a decorated base. The use of metal became widespread during this period. Daskalio Cyprian Broodbank: An Island Archaeology of the Early Cyclades. Cambridge University Press, 2002, ISBN 0521528445 Mariya Ivanova: Befestigte Siedlungen auf dem Balkan, in der Ägäis und in Westanatolien, ca.
5000-2000 v. Chr.. Waxmann Verlag, 2008, ISBN 3830919379 Colin Renfrew, Christos Doumas, Lila Marangou, Giorgos Gavelas: Dhaskalio Kavos, Keros: The Investigations of 1987–88. In: N. J. Brodie, J. Doole, G. Gavalas, C. Renfrew: Horizon – a colloquium on the prehistory of the Cyclades. Cambridge, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, 2008, ISBN 978-1-902937-36-6, S. 107–113 Panayiota Sotorakopoulou: Dhaskalio Kavos, Keros: The pottery from the Investigations of the 1960s. In: N. J. Brodie, J. Doole, G. Gavalas, C. Renfrew: Horizon – a colloquium on the prehistory of the Cyclades. Cambridge, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, 2008, ISBN 978-1-902937-36-6, S. 115–120 Colin Renfrew et al.: Keros – Dhaskelion and Kavos, Early Cycladic Stronghold and Ritual Center. Preliminary Report of the 2006 and 2007 Excavation Seasons. In: The Annual of the British School at Athens 102, 2007, S. 103–136 Colin Renfrew et al.: The Early Cycladic Settlement at Dhaskalio, Keros – Preliminary Report of the 2008 Excavation Season.
In: The Annual of the British School at Athens, 104, 2009, S. 27–47 Official website of Community of Koufonísi The Cambridge Keros Project
Kea known as Tzia and in antiquity Keos, is a Greek island in the Cyclades archipelago in the Aegean Sea. Kea is part of the Kea-Kythnos regional unit; the Cyclades Islands are defined by laid-back Naxos and Paros, the more bohemian Mykonos and Ios and the picture perfect Santorini. Yet not many have heard of Kea – the closest Cyclades getaway to the mainland, but one that feels much, much further away, it is the island of the Cyclades complex, closest to Attica and is 20 km from Cape Sounio as well as 60 km SE of Athens. Its climate is arid, its terrain is hilly. Kea is 9 km wide from west to east; the area is 128.9 km2 with the highest point being 560 m above sea level. The municipality, which includes the island Makronisos, has an area of 148.926 km2. Its capital, Ioulis, is considered quite picturesque. Other major villages of Kea are the fishing village of Vourkari. After suffering depopulation for many decades, Kea has been rediscovered by Athenians as a convenient destination for weekend and yachting trips.
The population in 2011 was 2,455. Chavouna Ellinika Kato Meria Ioulis Korissia Koundouros Otzias Pisses Vourkari Pera Meria Kea is the location of a Bronze Age settlement at the site now called Ayia Irini, which reached its height in the Late Minoan and Early Mycenaean eras. In the Archaic period, the island was divided between four city-states: Ioulis, Karthaia and Koressos. During the classical period, Kea was the home of Simonides and of his nephew Bacchylides, both ancient Greek lyric poets, of the Sophist Prodicus, of the physician Erasistratus; the inhabitants were known for offering sacrifices to the Dog Star, Sirius and to Zeus to bring cooling breezes while awaiting the reappearance of Sirius in summer. Coins retrieved from the island from the 3rd century BC feature dogs or stars with emanating rays, highlighting Sirius' importance. During the Byzantine period, many churches were built and the prosperity of the island rose, it was Byzantine. The Archbishop of Athens, Michael Choniates, came here in exile after his city fell to the Crusaders in 1205.
It was recaptured by the Byzantines under Licario in 1278. In around 1302 during the Byzantine–Venetian War, it again fell to the Venetians, who built a castle on the ancient acropolis of Ioulis. Kea was taken from the Venetians by the Ottoman Turks in 1537. Along with the rest of the Cyclades, Kea joined Greece following the Greek War of Independence in 1821. HMHS Britannic, the largest ship sunk in World War I, the sister ship to the RMS Titanic and the RMS Olympic, sank off Kea island in 1916, having hit a mine; the earliest indication of it as a Greek bishopric is in a list by the Sicilian monk Neilos Doxapatres of the second half of the 12th century and this may have been a interpolation, since the list of the Greek bishops of Kea begins only at the end of the 16th century. In 1330, as part of the Venetian Duchy of Naxos, it became, under the name Ceo, the see of a Latin Church bishopric of Ceo in the Cyclades, which in 1600 was renamed bishopric of Diocese of Thermia, but suppressed in 1650, after the Ottoman conquest.
It is today listed by the Catholic Church. The island is a destination for exploring nature and scuba diving, with excellent visibility, rich marine life, wall and wreck diving; the water temperature ranges from 20°-26°C. The highlight for recreational divers is the wreck of the paddle/wheeler steamship Patris which sank in 1868 and lies at a depth 28 metres, she was a passenger steamer 66 m long, in service in the Aegean Sea, owned by the Hellenic Steamship Co. based on Syros island, at that time the capital of Greece. She hit the reef off Koundouros Bay at Makriopounda, Kea island on 24 February 1868 with about 120 passengers aboard. No casualties were reported owing to the proximity of land; the wreck of the HMHS Britannic, sister ship of the RMS Titanic, located 1.5 nautical mile offshore, is at a depth of about 120 m. SS Burdigala is a discovered wreck, 800 m from the island's harbour, at 53 m depth. Sunk in 1916, she was a 180 m long ocean liner built in Germany by Ferdinand Schichau Werft.
Simonides lyric poet Bacchylides lyric poet Prodicus sophist Theramenes Athenian statesman Aristo peripatetic philosopher Emmanouil Papadopoulos, Russian general Patriarch Meletius III of Constantinople Cyparissos Stephanos mathematician Kea is the scene of much of Mary Renault's novel, The Praise Singer. Communities of the Cyclades Official Island website GigaCatholic, with incumbent biography links An 1885 travel guide to Keos, an excerpt from James Theodore Bent's The Cyclades, or Life among the Insular Greeks
The Cyclades are an island group in the Aegean Sea, southeast of mainland Greece and a former administrative prefecture of Greece. They are one of the island groups; the name refers to the islands around the sacred island of Delos. The largest island of the Cyclades is Naxos; the significant Late Neolithic and Early Bronze Age Cycladic culture is best known for its schematic, flat idols carved out of the islands' pure white marble centuries before the great Middle Bronze Age Minoan civilization arose in Crete to the south. A distinctive Neolithic culture amalgamating Anatolian and mainland Greek elements arose in the western Aegean before 4000 BCE, based on emmer and wild-type barley and goats, tuna that were speared from small boats. Excavated sites include Saliagos and Kephala with signs of copperworking, Each of the small Cycladic islands could support no more than a few thousand people, though Late Cycladic boat models show that fifty oarsmen could be assembled from the scattered communities, when the organized palace-culture of Crete arose, the islands faded into insignificance, with the exception of Delos, which retained its archaic reputation as a sanctuary throughout antiquity and until the emergence of Christianity.
The first archaeological excavations of the 1880s were followed by systematic work by the British School at Athens and by Christos Tsountas, who investigated burial sites on several islands in 1898–1899 and coined the term "Cycladic civilization". Interest lagged picked up in the mid-20th century, as collectors competed for the modern-looking figures that seemed so similar to sculpture by Jean Arp or Constantin Brâncuși. Sites were looted and a brisk trade in forgeries arose; the context for many of these Cycladic figurines has been destroyed and their meaning may never be understood. Another intriguing and mysterious object is that of the Cycladic frying pans. More accurate archaeology has revealed the broad outlines of a farming and seafaring culture that had immigrated from Anatolia c. 5000 BCE. Early Cycladic culture evolved in three phases, between c. 3300 – 2000 BCE, when it was swamped in the rising influence of Minoan Crete. The culture of mainland Greece contemporary with Cycladic culture is known as the Helladic period.
In recent decades the Cyclades have become popular with European and other tourists, as a result there have been problems with erosion and water shortages. The Cyclades comprise about 220 islands, the major ones being Amorgos, Andros, Delos, Kea, Kythnos, Mykonos, Paros, Serifos, Sikinos, Syros and Thira or Santoríni. There are many minor islands including Donousa, Gyaros, Koufonisia, Makronisos and Schoinousa; the name "Cyclades" refers to the islands forming a circle around the sacred island of Delos. Most of the smaller islands are uninhabited. Ermoupoli on Syros is the chief town and administrative center of the former prefecture; the islands are peaks of a submerged mountainous terrain, with the exception of two volcanic islands and Santorini. The climate is dry and mild, but with the exception of Naxos the soil is not fertile. Cooler temperatures are in higher elevations and do not receive wintry weather; the Cyclades are bounded to the south by the Sea of Crete. The Cyclades Prefecture was one of the prefectures of Greece.
As a part of the 2011 Kallikratis government reform, the prefecture was abolished, its territory was divided into nine regional units of the South Aegean region: Andros Kea-Kythnos Milos Mykonos Naxos Paros Thira Syros Tinos The prefecture was subdivided into the following municipalities and communities. These have been reorganised at the 2011 Kallikratis reform as well. Province of Amorgos: Amorgos Province of Andros: Andros Province of Kea: Ioulis Province of Milos: Milos Province of Naxos: Naxos Province of Paros: Paroikia Province of Syros: Ermoupoli Province of Tinos: Tinos Province of Thira: ThiraNote: Provinces no longer hold any legal status in Greece. Local specialities of the Cyclades include: Brantada Fava santorinis Fourtalia Kalasouna Kalogeros Kakavia Ladopita Louza, similar to the Cypriot lountza Mastelo Strapatsada Lazarakia Melopita Aegean cat Nisiotika music Santorini wine Mosaics of Delos J. A. MacGillivray and R. L. N. Barber, The Prehistoric Cyclades 1984. R. L. N. Barber, The Cyclades in the Bronze Age 1987.
Peter Saundry, C. Michael Hogan & Steve Baum. 2011. Sea of Crete. Encyclopedia of Earth. Eds. M. Pidwirny & C. J. Cleveland. National Council for Science and Environment. Washington DC. Jeremy B. Rutter, "The Prehistoric Archaeology of the Aegean": Lessons 2 and 4: chronology, bibliography Cyclades The Official website of the Greek National Tourism Organisation
Regional units of Greece
The 74 regional units are administrative units of Greece. They are subdivisions of the country's 13 regions, further subdivided into municipalities, they were introduced as part of the "Kallikratis" administrative reform on 1 January 2011 and are comparable in area and, in the mainland, coterminous with the pre-"Kallikratis" prefectures of Greece