Nikos Svoronos French/Lefkadian historian 1911-1989

Nikos Svoronou Lefkádian Historian
Nikos Svoronou Lefkádian Historian
Nikos Svoronou Lefkádian Historian
Nikos Svoronou Lefkádian Historian

You know your famous when not only do you have a statue of yourself but there is a street carrying your name as there is both of these requirements in Lefkás town dedicated to the above gentleman. He also has an entire library named after him but I’m yet to find as signage is very poor here.

However due to the fact that he followed Marxist ideology it is quite difficult to find out anything about him. Once again censorship is taking place but in a rather subtle way so its only later on in history after they have died that you realise this. The fact the information about him is on the side of this rather odd statue and it’s facing away from the direction of footfall is quite telling.

He was a byzantinologist or in other words a man who studied the Byzantine era. He is an internationally respected historian of our modern era. Once again he is a guy you would never come across unless you were interested in his specific topic. He liked the economic and social history of Greece and wrote in a way that was quite different from his contemporaries which is why he stood out. If you want to know about the impact that Ottoman Turkish rule had on Greece, he is the man you need.

His family donated his work after he died and it is housed in the Nikos Svoronos library. However due to him being French, some of his work still resides in France and will remain there forever as its too delicate to transport now.

Have you any celebrated historians in your country?

Best wishes

Angela

Kosmas of Aetolia Greek monk and historian 1714-1779

These are disposable tablecloths that cover many of the tables in restaurants around here. It’s nice that you can learn about the culture of the place your staying through such a simple gesture.

This one tells a brief history of Apolokarnanina which is the area that houses Preveza airport that you fly into to visit Lefkás.Kosmas of Aetolia-Acarnania. He founded a school in Preveza which upset the Venetians who were ruling at the time leading to his death. For a Greek perspective Cosmas of Aetolia

There are also poems by Angelos Sikelianos “The first rain” which describes the beauty rain can inspire in you when you let it touch your soul and you dance in it. ”

It says above that the poet was born in Lefkás in 1884.

It says below he was born in Lefkás in 1850 and he was the national poet of Japan. His house is still there in Kithera.Lefkada Hearn There is also an Aristotle Valaoritis poem, biographical information and another poem. e

He is the second part of my Famous Greeks series.

Pavlos Santorinis

Theodore Stephanides

Other series include Greek poets, authors, Musicians, Rural villages in Lefkás and Foreigners who have become interested and or benefited Greece in some ways. All the links can be found here Series links.

Do you have any simple gestures like to help inform visitors to your country?

Best wishes

Angela

Gerald Durrell English Zoologist 1925-1995

I came across this passage in a book I received as a school prize and I’ve only just rediscovered it.

As you can see Gerry is well written like his older brother Lawrence Durrell. They were life long friends even though you may not get that idea from the TV show The Durells. Because of his prowess with animals and the profound effect he has had on the world of conservation, he was awarded an OBE (order of the British empire). He founded DICE which is the Durrell institute of conservation and ecology.

Gerry has written many books but I haven’t been able to get hold of any so far. The above passage is from My Family and other animals which is slightly autobiographical. 2 of his other books that form the Corfu trilogy are also autobiographical in nature. Birds, beasts and relatives along with the Garden of the Gods.

I have been recommended to read him especially Bats in the Belfry, based on comments that have been left when I wrote about the articles I mentioned earlier. So when I get the opportunity to I will indulge. I think Amazon is going to be my best bet here. It’s how I acquired most of my Lawrence Durrell books so far.

Theodore Stephanides (wiki link for personal details) who is Gerry’s friend, tutor and fellow botanist also played a big part in his life. He features in Lawrence’s Prospero’s Cell and Henry Miller‘s The Colossus of Maroussi. I have also written an article about Theodore Stephanides as he is the answer to another question that I was asked and at that time I couldn’t answer him.

It’s amazing how I start writing about one thing and I follow the trail that is made and it ends up becoming a rabbit hole with many offshoots in which one can become lost in. My posts are becoming an interconnected web of life in the 1920s and 30’s.

He is the Fifth part of the foreigners series who are interested in Greece:

  1. Lawrence Durrell
  1. Virginia Woolf
  1. Henry Miller
  1. Lord Byron

Other series include Greek Poets, Painters, Authors, Musicians, Famous Greeks, and Rural Villages in Lefkás. All the links can be found here Series links.

Best wishes

Here are his specific personal details. Gerald Durrell

Best wishes

Angela

Theodore Stephanides Greek doctor 1896-1983

I was inspired to write this post because one of my comments previously mentioned about the connections between India and Greece which I was unaware of and the Wikipedia article he suggested was very lacking in information. I would like to thank my readers for giving this feedback and ideas to write posts that your actually interested in, rather than just stuff I’m personally interested in. Also for the fact that comments are sometimes worth exploring in greater detail later on when I have the time.

Theodore Stephanides was part of the ancient raj that was the ruling British culture of India until independence in 1947. His parents were Greek but his mother was born in Russia to a wealthy family from Chios (Greek island). He grew up in Bombay (now Chennai) and moved to Greek at 11 where he learnt his Greek.

He was a poet translating Kostis Palamas from Greek to English after World War One when he was a gunner. He later studied medicine and started the first Xray machine in Corfu as shown on the Durells.

He was lifelong friends with both Gerald Durrell and Lawrence Durrell assisting with the completion of their novels, My family and other animals as well the Greek Islands.

He also wrote his own books on radiology, Corfu and botany.

He is the second part of my Famous Greeks series.

Pavlos Santorinis

Other series include Greek poets, Painters, Authors, Musicians, Rural villages in Lefkás and Foreigners who have become interested and or benefited Greece in some ways. All the links can be found here Series links.

Best wishes

Angela

Wilhelm Dorpfeld German archeologist and historian 1852- 1940

He is the founder of the scientific approach to archeology for he came up with the theory of stratigraphy which is the recording of strata to enable you to use the objects found in the correct manner. He is however most famous here for his Bronze Age excavations that took place

from 1900-1910 Tombs near Nidri

and he was the originator of the thought that Lefkás was Homer’s Ithaka. Displayed below is the Odyssey boat but here it’s in the harbour on Meganisi.

I have even watched a BBC4 program where they went in search of the physical evidence based on passages from the Odyssey itself ending in Lefkás with a trip on the boat in the picture which I have been on and it’s very informative. Dörpfeld did many evacuations in the area including Meganisi

Meganisi
Meganisi

but anything more than hearsay cannot really be proven which is unfortunate. I think the modern conclusion to the theory is that it is Ithaka that Homer lived on, not Lefkás despite Dörpfeld’s exhaustive efforts.

He is however commemorated on the island by having the bus stops in Nidri dedicated to his memory. This is because he believed that the bay of Nidri (this picture is also on display in the Gramophone museum Lefkás town) Nidri

Nidri

was Homer’s base for the setting of the start and end of the Odyssey. He also thought the bay of pigs was Sivota bay.Sivota

Sivota

You can also get hold of a book Wilhelm Dorpfeld in Lefkás that tells you all about himself and the work that he did on the island. I have read it and it’s quite informative. It’s the best source of information around and the black and white pictures in this post come from that book.

The picture of his grave is at Geni which is across the water from Nidri and very close to Agia Kiriaki church. He also has the honour of a street named after him in Lefkás town.

There is an Archeological museum In Lefkás Town with a room full of his finds in Lefkás town but more were destroyed by a fire that happened not long after they were discovered in the place that they were being stored nearby the excavation site.

It is quite difficult to get hold of information about him in English but the above mentioned book and museum I linked to earlier is your best bet here. You can find out more about him in the museums in Athens.

However, the majority of it is in German. I have previously come across a PHD document written by a Greek that is in English online. However, as with all things you find when your not really looking for them; there really difficult to locate when you actually need them. Wilhelm Dörpfeld founded a school of archeology in Athens so you do occasionally come across gems like that document but just like gems they are very hard to discover again after you have initially found them.

As a consolation prize here is the Wikipedia article on him

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilhelm_Dörpfeld

Do you know of any little known people from your country who deserve to be more famous?

Best wishes

Angela

Pytheos of Halicarnassus

Pytheos of Halicarnassus

https://greatestgreeks.wordpress.com/2019/05/27/pytheos-of-halicarnassus/
— Read on greatestgreeks.wordpress.com/2019/05/27/pytheos-of-halicarnassus/

Today is archeology day hence there will be 2 posts in quick succession. One about Ancient Greece and the Greek mainland which is this one and the other being more localised and modern which is mine but still about an ancient time period.

Best wishes

Angela

The Stoic way to deal with the problem of Indifference in Relationships

The Problem of Indifference in Relationships

The Problem of Indifference in Relationships
— Read on beyondboundslb.co/2019/05/26/the-problem-of-indifference-in-relationships/

Stoicism is an Ancient Greek ideal that is gaining popularity at the moment. Here is a good explanation of how it relates to modern life.

Best wishes

Angela

Poem No. 176: “This Then Is I” (From Axion Esti = Gepriesen Sei) – by Odysseas Elytis

Poem No. 176: “This Then Is I” (From Axion Esti = Gepriesen Sei) – by Odysseas Elytis

https://theredboxcom.wordpress.com/2019/05/23/poem-no-this-then-is-i-from-axion-esti-gepriesen-sei-by-odysseas-elytis/
— Read on theredboxcom.wordpress.com/2019/05/23/poem-no-this-then-is-i-from-axion-esti-gepriesen-sei-by-odysseas-elytis/

One of the Greek poets that I have written about so I thought you aught to see some of his work.Odysseus Elytis

Best wishes

Angela