hellas map


View I Love Hellas in a larger map

Τρίτη, 8 Ιανουαρίου 2013

Lemnos General information


Welcome to Lemnos!

We welcome you to our website, which is dedicated exclusively to the beautiful frontier island of the Aegean Sea, Lemnos (also Limnos)! This site is made by people who love the island and its purpose is to highlight thenatural beauties, the history and the culture of the island! At the same time, the visitors of the site will be able to find easy, fast and simple, hotels, rooms to let, taverns- restaurants, cafeterias and clubs, all the necessary information to ensure a lovely stay on the island.

File:LimnosMap.svg



General Information

Lemnos is the 8th largest island in Greece, with an area of 438 sq km. It is located in the north Aegean, at the Thracian Sea, between Mount Athos, Samothrace, Imvros and Lesvos. Lemnos and the island of Agios Efstratios, constitute the peripheral unit of Lemnos, in the County of Lesvos. The capital and main port of Lemnos is Myrina, named after the wife of the first king of the island, Thoantas. Until 1955 Myrina was known as Kastro (castle), a name that prevailed during the late Byzantine era, and it’s still called this way informally by the older islanders. Lemnos is a volcanic island. Although it does not have any forests, it is filled with extensive fertile fields, cultivated with vineyards and cereals. It also has, wonderful clean beaches and it’s the ideal island for relaxed vacation. The main occupations of the locals are stock raising, agriculture, fishing and also, tourism, trade and maritime occupations. The population of the island is about 18.000.


Lemnos in Mythology

For ancient Greeks, the island was sacred to Hephaestus, god of technology, who— as he tells himself in Iliad I.590ff— fell on Lemnos when his father Zeus hurled him headlong out of Olympus. There, he was cared for by the Sinties, according to Iliad or by Thetis (Apollodorus, Bibliotheke I:3.5), and there with a Thracian nymph Cabiro (a daughter of Proteus) he fathered a tribe called the Cabiroides. Sacred rites dedicated to them were performed in the island.

Φιλοκτήτης

Hephaestus' forge, which was located on Lemnos, as well as the name Aethaleia, sometimes applied to it, points to its volcanic character. It is said that fire occasionally blazed forth from Mosychlos, one of its mountains. The ancient geographer Pausanias relates that a small island called Chryse, off the Lemnian coast, was swallowed up by the sea. All volcanic action is now extinct.

The name of "Lemnos" is said by Hecataeus to have been a title of Cybele among the Thracians, and the earliest inhabitants are said to have been a Thracian tribe, whom the Greeks called Sintians, "the robbers".

Lemnos castle

Apollodorus (Epitome I:9) records that when Dionysus found Ariadne abandoned on Naxos, he brought her to Lemnos and there fathered Thoas, Staphylus, Oenopion, and Peparethus. Pliny the Elder in his Natural History (xxxvi. 13) speaks of a remarkable labyrinth in Lemnos, which has not been identified in modern times.

According to a famous legend, the women were all deserted by their husbands for Thracian women, and in revenge they murdered every man on the island. From this barbarous act, the expression Lemnian deeds became proverbial among the Hellenes. The Argonauts landing soon after found only women in the island, ruled by Hypsipyle, daughter of the old king Thoas. From the Argonauts and the Lemnian women were descended the race called Minyae, whose king Euneus, son of Jason and Hypsipyle, sent wine and provisions to the Achaeans at Troy. The Minyae were expelled by a Pelasgian tribe who came from Attica.

The historical element underlying these traditions is probably that the original Thracian people were gradually brought into communication with the Greeks as navigation began to unite the scattered islands of the Aegean; the Thracian inhabitants were technologically primitive in comparison with the Greek mariners.

The worship of Cybele was characteristic of Thrace, where it had spread from Asia Minor at a very early period. Hypsipyle and Myrina (the name of one of the chief towns) are Amazon names, which are always connected with Asiatic Cybele-worship.

In another legend, Philoctetes was left on Lemnos by the Greeks on their way to Troy; and there he suffered ten years' agony from his wounded foot, until Odysseus and Neoptolemus induced him to accompany them to Troy. According to Sophocles, he lived beside Mount Hermaeus, which Aeschylus makes one of the beacon points to flash the news of Troy's downfall home to Argos.

History of Lemnos


Homer speaks as if there were one town in the island called Lemnos, but in historical times there was no such place. There were two towns, Myrina (also called Kastro), and Hephaestia which was the chief town. Coins from Hephaestia are found in considerable number, and various types including the goddess Athena with her owl, native religious symbols, the caps of the Dioscuri, Apollo, etc. Few coins of Myrina are known. They belong to the period of Attic occupation, and bear Athenian types. A few coins are also known which bear the name of the whole island, rather than of either city.

A trace of the pre-Greek Lemnian language is found on a 6th century inscription on a funerary stele, the Lemnos stele.

Coming down to a better authenticated period, we find that Lemnos was conquered by Otanes, a general of Darius Hystaspis. But soon (510 BC) it was reconquered by Miltiades the Younger, the tyrant of the Thracian Chersonese. Miltiades later returned to Athens, and Lemnos was an Athenian possession until the Macedonian empire absorbed it.

In 197 BC, the Romans declared it free, but in 166 BC gave it over to Athens which retained nominal possession of it until the whole of Greece was made a province of the Roman Empire in 146 BC. After the division of the empire, Lemnos passed to the Byzantine Empire.

Like other eastern provinces, its possession changed between Greeks, Italians and Turks. In 1476 the Venetians and Greek Byzantines successfully defended Kotschinos against a Turkish siege. But in 1657 Kastro was captured by the Turks after a siege of 36 days. In 1770, Kastro was besieged by Count Orlov. During the Russo-Turkish War, 1806-1812, Admiral Senyavin won the naval Battle of Lemnos off the coast. In 1912, Lemnos became part of Greece during the First Balkan War.

Modern Lemnos

Today the island of Lemnos or Limnos has about 30 villages and settlements. The province includes the island of Agios Efstratios to the southwest which has some exceptional beaches and the only desert in Europe.

Lemnos is a military base of Greece as it stands on a strategically important part of the Aegean Sea. During the First Balkan War, the Naval Battle of Lemnos took place here on January 18, 1913, in which the Ottoman navy sought to thwart Greece's capture of Aegean islands. The Greek fleet under Admiral Pavlos Kountouriotis was in the port at Moudros when they received signals that the Turkish fleet was approaching. The Greek fleet decisively defeated the Turkish fleet, which retreated to the Dardanelles and did not go out again throughout the war. The Greek battleship Limnos was named after this battle.

During World War I, the Allies in early 1915 used the island to try to capture the Dardanelles Straits, some 50km away. This was done chiefly by the British and largely through the enthusiasm of Winston Churchill. The harbour at Mudros was put under the control of British Admiral Rosslyn Wemyss, who was ordered to prepare the then largely unused harbour for operations against the Dardanelles.

The harbour was broad enough for British and French warships, but lacked suitable military facilities, which was recognized early on. Troops intended for Gallipoli had to train in Egypt; and the port found it difficult to cope with casualties of the ill-starred Gallipoli campaign. The campaign was called off in evident failure at the close of 1915. Mudros' importance receded, although it remained the Allied base for the blockade of the Dardanelles during the war.

In late October 1918, the armistice between Turkey and the Allies was signed at Mudros.

After the Red Army victory in the Russian Civil War, many Kuban Cossacks, fled the country to avoid persecution from the Bolsheviks. A notable eviction point was the Greek island of Lemnos where 18 thousand Kuban Cossacks have landed, though many would die of starvation and disease. Most left the island after a year.

Δεν υπάρχουν σχόλια:

Δημοσίευση σχολίου