Get to know the past of Santorini

Find at Emporio 847 03, call us on 694 457 7918 and book Santorini tours. Get to know the past of Santorini! Santorini has a great history, especialy with the eruptions of the volcano.

During the Byzantium era

In 726 there was an eruption on the northeast side of Palaia Kameni and a new island appeared, which quickly joined it. The explosion was seen as a sign of divine wrath against the Byzantine Emperor Leo III Isaurus, who was an iconoclast. The emperor’s opponents used the event to incite rebellion, which finally broke out in 727, both in the Cyclades and in the rest of Greece. The leader of the revolution was the tourmarch of Greece Agallianos and Stefanos. The rebels appointed another emperor, a Cretan named Cosmas, and sailed for Constantinople. The fleet was destroyed by liquid fire, on April 18, 727, while among the leaders of the rebellion, Agallianos was thrown into the sea, while Stefanos and Cosmas surrendered and were beheaded.

From the first Conquest of Byzantium to the Revolution of 1821

After the Conquest of Constantinople by the Crusaders in 1204, Markos Sanoudos founded the Aegean duchy with headquarters in Naxos. The remaining islands included in the Duchy of the Aegean or Duchy of Naxos were Syros, Kimolos, Milos, Ios, Thira and Anafi. Thera and Thirasia were granted to Iakovos Barozzi and remained in this family, with short breaks, until 1480. Then Thera was given as a dowry by the duke of Naxos Iakovos III Crispi to his daughter Fiorenza and her husband Dominico Pisani, son of the Duke of Crete. The island, shortly after the death of Iakovos Crispi, was occupied by his brother Ioannis and annexed to Naxos. During the time of the fall of Constantinople by the Ottomans, many Greek countries remained under Latin rule.

In 1537, Thera, following the fate of the other Aegean islands, received the raids of Hairedin Barbarossa. Barbarossa wrested Kea, Mykonos, and Thera from Latin rule and forced the dynasties of the islands to recognize the suzerainty of the Sultan. Thira finally fell to the Turks in 1566, with the exception of the castle of Akrotiri, which passed into the hands of the Turks in 1617.

When the Spanish Jew Joseph Nasi died in 1579, to whom the Cyclades had been granted by the High Gate of the Ottoman Empire, the islanders they sent an embassy to Sultan Murat III (1574 – 1595) to request the granting of privileges. Among the envoys of the islands were also representatives of Santorini. With a definition issued in 1580, the islands of the Cyclades were granted important privileges, which were renewed in 1628 – 1629 and later. The regime of privileges helped to organize a system of self-government and to develop commercial activity in them.

Despite the barren terrain and the devastating earthquakes that hit the island complex of Santorini – as it was called during the Venetian occupation – it showed success in agriculture and shipping. In 1770 the population of the island reached 9,000 and as can be seen from the amount of tax paid by the island, it must have been more prosperous compared to the other islands. At the beginning of the 19th century, the economic strength of the island continued, as did the performance in the navy.

In 1807, during the navigation carried out by the Port to meet its needs during the Russo-Turkish war, Thera was obliged to send 50 sailors to the Turkish naval station, the same number as Mykonos, a fact that shows the great development of the island’s navy. Development was also observed during the last years of the Turkish rule in education, while the monastery of Prophet Ilias on the island became one of the most important monastic centers of the Cyclades.

During the newer times

On May 5, 1821, Captain Evangelos Matzarakis raised the flag of the revolution in the island.

On October 18, 1944, during World War II, Santorini was occupied by Italian and German occupation forces.

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