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Listed 38 sub titles with search on: History  for wider area of: "SAMOS Prefecture NORTH AEGEAN" .

History (38)


The league of Aegean states

After Spartian power in the Aegean was destroyed by Conon in 394 B.C., Iasos was rebuilt, possibly with the aid of Knidos, and it joined a league of Aegean states that included Ephesos, Rhodes, Samos, and Byzantium.

Benefactors of the place

Alexander the Great, 322 B.C.

He resettled the inhabitants of the island, who were exiled by Timotheus of Athens in 365 B.C.

Colonizations by the inhabitants

Samians settle Samothrace

The Ephesians under Androclus made war on Leogorus, the son of Procles, who reigned in Samos after his father, and after conquering them in a battle drove the Samians out of their island, accusing them of conspiring with the Carians against the Ionians. The Samians fled and some of them made their home in an island near Thrace, and as a result of their settling there the name of the island was changed from Dardania to Samothrace. Others with Leogorus threw a wall round Anaea on the mainland opposite Samos, and ten years after crossed over, expelled the Ephesians and reoccupied the island.(Paus. 7.4.2)
Both Cephallenia and Samothrace were called Samos at the time of the Trojan War (for otherwise Hecabe would not be introduced as saying that he (Achilles) was for selling her children whom he might take captive "unto Samos and unto Imbros", Il 13.13), and since the Ionian Samos had not yet been colonized, it plainly got its name from one of the islands which earlier bore the same name. Whence that other fact is also clear, that those writers contradict ancient history who say that colonists came from Samos after the Ionian migration and the arrival of Tembrion and named Samothrace Samos, since this story was fabricated by the Samians to enhance the glory of their island.(Strabo 10.2.17)

Samian colonists in Sicily

The men of property among the Samians were displeased by the dealings of their generals with the Medes, so after the sea-fight they took counsel immediately and resolved that before Aeaces the tyrant came to their country they would sail to a colony, rather than remain and be slaves of the Medes and Aeaces. The people of Zancle in Sicily about this time sent messengers to Ionia inviting the Ionians to the Fair Coast, desiring there to found an Ionian city. This Fair Coast, as it is called, is in Sicily, in that part which looks towards Tyrrhenia. At this invitation, the Samians alone of the Ionians, with those Milesians who had escaped, set forth.(Herodt. 6.22)

The people of Zancle admitting settlers from Samos

Commercial WebPages

Official pages

  The island of Icaria was inhabited as far back as the Stone Age, as evidenced by archaeological data. Much later early Greek-speaking tribes like the Carians, the Leleges and the Pelasgians made their appearance. There is evidence of both Minoan and Phoenician sea masters of the early period. In the 8th c. BC. Ionians came from Miletus, a rich city of Asia Minor, but it was their ill-luck to be enslaved by the Persians in 512 B.C.
  With the eclipse of Persian power, Icaria became an ally of Athens and a member of the Athenian Alliance. During this time the first cities were established. Very close to present-day Therma was the ancient settlement at Therma, though few ruins are to be seen today.
  The remains of Drakanon, another ancient city, are to be found on the eastern cape of the island. The acropolis, crowned by a beautiful castle is believed to date from the Hellenistic period, the time of Alexander.
  On the northern side of the island are the ruins of Oinoe, once the capital city, near the modern village of Kampos. Ancient walls, an aqueduct and parts of a building called "the Palace", are still preserved, and other finds have been collected at the local museum.
  Finally, on the northwestern point, is the floor and a few broken columns of a temple to the goddess Artemis. The village is still called "Nas", a contraction of the Greek word "naos", a place of worship. At the time that this floor was in use, Icaria was rich and prosperous.
  In the years of Alexander the Great, and later when his successor were engaging in ceaseless, wars, Icaria was plagued by the pirates who took advantage of the confusion to raid and plunder the Aegean islands. The population dropped, while others from Samos and Leros came and settled. Finally, Icaria became a part of the Kingdom of Pergamus, in time to be swallowed up by the Roman Empire in 133 B.C.
  The Roman general Pompey temporarily relieved Icaria from a new irruption of pirates, but with the end of the Roman Empire, Icaria fell into decay.
  Improvement came with the Byzantines, refugees from the invasions, Maltese and Genoese sought safety here, and before long, 70,000 people were living on Icaria.
  After the fall of Constantinople to the Franks in 1904 A.D. Venice took several islands, including Icaria. Until 1362 the island was owned by the Venetian Franks and later, by the Genoese. The Ionian Knights of Rhodes took over until the Turks captured the island in 1521. During the early years of the Turkish occupation, the inhabitants took to hiding in caves and steep places.
  In the 19th century local government brought great progress to Icaria, organizing schools, a just taxation system and encouraging the development of farming and navigation. During the Greek Revolution of 1821, many Icarians joined the "Filiki Etairia" - the so-called "Friendly Society" which nourished ideas of Greek independence - and they took an active part in the struggle. In 1911, Italy went to war with Turkey, and took over the Dodecanese as far as neighbouring Patmos.
  Now the Icarians were ready to take their fate into their own hands. With the support of the new Greek government, they rebelled and declared independence on 17 July, 1912. They established a free state with its own army, police, stamps and national anthem. On November 4, 1912, Icaria was united with Greece, the mother country.
This text (extract) is cited July 2003 from the Municipality of Agios Kirikos tourist pamphlet.

  The Ikarian writer Eparchidis wrote the history of Ikaria but few fragments have been found. The first reference to Ikaria is that of Strabo, according to which people of Miletus “cosettled” in Ikaria and also colonized the Black Sea and the West Mediterranean.
  Earlier on, the great divinity of the Ikarians was Dionysos who was connected to the cultivation of the vine (Pramnian wine is mentioned in Homer’s epics). The other divinity was Artemis in the area of Nas, which today belongs to the Municipality of Raches.
  Many historical pieces from Classical, Hellenistic and Byzantine times are exhibited in the Museum of Kampos. Many samples of capitals in blue granite with bas-relief goat heads have also been preserved in Ikaria: the goat being the dominant domestic animal of the island and known as “ρασκό ριφάκι” (the wild, free-grazing goat).   The Ikarians were also members of the Athenian Alliance.
  Ikarian seamen in the fleet of Alexander the Great persuaded him to name “Ikaria” one of the seventeen islands in the Persian Gulf.
This text (extract) is cited January 2004 from the Evdilos Municipal Cultural Organization tourist pamphlet.

  During the Byzantine period, Ikaria was placed under the Genoese Maona of Chios. The resistance of the Ikarians is referred as: “The wealthy left the island and went to Chios, the Crimea and Africa (Egypt), whereas the poor took to the hills”.
  Following this, Ikarians resisted Turkish agha over a cliff in the palanquin “with its bells ringing”, taking on full responsibility for their act, and saying: “We all did it, master”.
  During the liberation war of 1821, the Ikarians, initiated into the Filiki Eteria, abolished Turkish rule and accepted refugees from Chios.
  Again in 1912 Ikarians, on their own initiative, expelled the Turkish guard and proclaimed the island’s independence and Ikaria administered itself as a free state under its own constitution for five months by a Revolutionary Committee, until it joined Greece.
  In 1945 Ikaria, again under its own strength, freed itself from the Italian domination.
This text (extract) is cited January 2004 from the Evdilos Municipal Cultural Organization tourist pamphlet.

   The residential kernel of Marathokampos started in ancient Samos, as it is indicated by the local traditions and toponyms. Due to the neighboring with the Ionian Coast, the Samian Civilization flourished mostly on the Eastern part of the Island, around the Temple of Hera, while not many things are known for the Central and Western part of the island.
  What we do know is that there was an intense development on the South West part of Samos, during the Byzantine and Post Byzantine years. This is confirmed by the written elements and the ruins of big settlements with walls and Temples, which have been found in the area.
  Through the natural harbors of our Municipality, all trade dealings were made, with the Western Islands of the Aegean Sea and the rest of Greece, while the Byzantine fleet harbored in these natural harbors in order to control the Central Aegean Sea.
  The development of our Municipality appears to be significant during the Post Byzantine years, when the Eastern part of Samos was depopulated by the fear of the Turks and pirates who foraged the area. The morphology of the area, the mentality of the people of Marathokampos, and the marine activity, interpret the maintenance of the healthy social and economical life of the area, during the years that are referred by the historians as the time of depopulation. At the harbor of Ormos - Spilia as it was called back then - the solid wood that came from Mount Kerkis made strong ships. The trade ships of Marathokampos traveled through the Mediterranean and the Black Sea, victoriously facing the pirates and the Turks. These trade ships where the bridge between West Samos, Ionian Coast and Central Greece. Brave hearted sailors from Marathokampos and their ships took part at the campaign of Napoleon the Great in Egypt and many of them died at the battle of the Pyramids.
  Marathokampos is the home land of Kapetan Stamatis Georgiadis, Napoleon's great fighter, member of the Karmanioli movement, and a hero of the Samian renaissance, whose presence at the Kavo's Fonia battle gave the victory to the Samian Arms in 1924. His family, his brothers, his sisters, his brothers in law gave everything to the strangle and died in exile in Evia when Samos turned to a hegemony. His house can be found in the village of Marathokampos where many of his personal belongings are saved there.
  In the church of St. Antonius, which was founded in 1904, one can see the bell that sounded the Revelation on the 17th of April 1821, calling all rebels to join against the tyranny of the Turks. In this church one can also find the icon that was ordered by the captains that followed Kapetan Stamatis at the beginning of the Revelation. During the years of the hegemony and between 1920-1940 Marathokampos town was a Municipality with Court of first instance, Country Court, Town School and Girl's School. In these schools teachers were bright people who had studied in Ionia and Europe. Among them were the fellow citizens Karatzas, Sfinis and Konstas. The citizens of Marathokampos were active during the Liberation fights in 1912-1913, the movement of Th. Sofoulis and the Near East campaign. Right after the union of Samos with Greece, four brothers, the famous Giagiades, feeling jostled, became outlaws. Finding refuge on the Mounts and being supported by others of the same ideology, their mutiny lasted for many years. And this is why the Giagiades mutiny has a big part of the Marathokampos History. Citizens of Marathokampos also fought fiercely in Albania and Middle East.
  The habitants of Marathokampos took great action during the years of the Italian - German occupation, working hard for the resistance. They acted on the mountains against the conquerors. Among the dead of Kastania, who were brutally murdered by the Italians, were many citizens of Marathokampos.
  Marathokampos is also the birthplace of the Patriarch of Jerusalem, Damianos and the Metropolite Aleksandros Dilanas. One of the most important Greek Archaeologists Manolis Andronikos spent his younger years in Marathokampos, while from Marathokampos Gymnasium graduated the litterateur Giannis Chatzinis and the historian Alexis Sevastakis.

This text is cited April 2005 from the Municipality of Marathokambos URL below, which contains images.

Mythology - Ancient History

  According to the Greek Mythology of the shores of the river Imvrassos the goddess Hera was born and the goddess was bathing in the river's waters, that's why the river was also called Parthenios. It was also in this place where Hera fist made love with Zeus. The first settlers of Samos were Hisieis from the promontory Hision of Asia Minor and Astipalaians. Kares, Leleges as well as Pelasgoi were the first inhabitants of Samos as in most of the island of the Aegean Sea. The Argonaut Agaios is considered to be the founder of the town of Samos and the one who introduced the cult of Hera and the cultivation of the vine. According to Apollonios of Rhodes, Agaios was not a settler but a Samian and son of the god Poseidon.
The myth of Agaios
  According to the myth, one of the many slaves working the vines, because of the harsh conditions of working the land, cursed the Argonaut hero, ruler of Samos, to not be able to drink that year's wine. When the wine was ready, Agaios summoned the slave and showed him the glass from where he was ready to drink that year's wine. Many things can happen until the glass reaches the lips? said the slave and indeed he was right.
  The sons of Agaios were Agapinor, who became king of the Arcadians and fought on the Trojan War and Samos who ruler in Samos.
  With the end of the Trojan War Ionians under the leadership of Proklis and Temvrionas colonized Samos. Paphsanias makes references to another wave of settlers coming from Phliouda of Peloponnisos under the leadership of Ippasos, the mythical ancestor of the Samian philosopher Pythagoras.
  From scientific research and the excavations on the hill of Kastro in Pythagorio, it is safe to say that Samos was inhabited as early as the Neolithic era.
  In the area of Iraion a settlement of the Procycladitic period was discovered. This settlement was the prime town of the island during the early Age of Bronze 3rd millennium BC.
  The oldest trace of the cult of Hera belong to the 2nd half of the 2nd millennium BC And this is the reason why Samos was also called Partheneia and Imvrassia in the honor of the river where the goddess was born. Thanks to its rich vegetation the island was also called Anthemis, Fillas, Kiparissia, Melamphilos, Drioussa, Dorissa, Stephani and Parthenoaroussa. The name Samos was given to the island due to its mountainous terrain and it originates from a prehellenic or Phoenician word that means high ground.
  The city of Samos, today's Pythagorio becomes one of the most important cities of Ionia along with Militos and Ephessos. Around 600 BC the Samian colonized Amorgos, Thrace, Cilicia and they had developed important trade relation with Egypt. In the city of Naphkratin on the Nile's delta the Samian had a whole quarter of the city. Before the end of the 7th century BC Samian had reached the mythical Tartisso, beyond the Heraklian Columns, today's Gibraltar. The 525 BC Samian mercenaries settle the oasis Baharigia between Egypt and Libya and the 531 BC Samians found Dikaiarhia, today's Poutzoli on the gulf of Naples.
  During the rule of Polikratis (538 or 532 - 522 BC) the development of commerce and artisan trades along with the built of a war fleet rendered Samos a sea power "first of all Greek and Barbarian cities" according to Herodotus. Typical was the new type of ship Samaina, which combined the requirement for storage space with revolutionary elements of a fast sea vessel.
  Herodotus wrote that he admired Samos for three amazing construction feats - marvels - that he visited during his visit to the island. These were: Ephpalinos Tunnel a water reservoir with an underground tunnel of 1036 meters in length. It was part of an extensive water distribution system for the ancient city of Samos, which had a population of 150000 people and according to other historical sources 300000 inhabitants. The "land within the sea", the ancient port of Pythagorio, which is considered the oldest manmade port in the world. Heraion, the temple of Hera, "the richest and biggest temple of all Greek temples". From the preclassical era we can also study and admire, finds from the palace of Polyctates and the ancient city of Samos, the ancient walls etc. (...)
1st Persian War
  In 479 BC in the straits of Mikali the Samian, Athenian and Spartan fleet gave the final blow to the Persian fleet and crushed the Persian army in land the 18th of September 479 BC.
  The great influence and power of Samos was deem as dangerous to the Athenian hegemony and using the conflict between Samos and Militos the Athenians placed Samos under siege for nine months 440-439 BC. Amongst the Athenian general who took part in the siege were Perikles, Sophokles and Thoukididis. The surrender of Samos brought the demolition of its walls, the surrender of the fleet and huge war compensations. Samos never really recovered after that.
The Peloponnesian Wars
  During the Peloponnesian wars Samos allied with the Athenians, but in 402 BC, the Spartans under the leadership of Lissandros conquered the island. After the Adaklidia peace of 387 BC the Persians conquered the island. Samos was assigned to the Satrap of Minor Asia and had to pay a yearly contribution of 400 talents.

This text is cited Febr 2004 from the Municipality of Pythagorio URL below, which contains images

Hellenistic Period

During the Asian Campaign of Alexander the Great, Samos was an important army and naval base. After the death of Alexander his successors, realizing Samos's key geographical position for the control of the west and southwest coasts of Asia Minor, fought for the islands domination. With the victory of the Romans against the Macedonians in Kinos Kefalais, in 197 BC, Samos was declared independent as every other Greek city. In 131 BC Samos was assigned along with the other Ionian cities to the Roman province of Asia.

This text is cited Febr 2004 from the Municipality of Pythagorio URL below, which contains images

Roman Period

  The roman occupation, although it was not strict during the first years of the Pax Romana, it was always disliked by the Greeks. Samos had a leading role in the revolution against the Romans, which was subsequently crushed the 88 BC. And Samos went through a period of suppression and pillage. In 82 BC Gaios Lucilus Verris stole from Iraion and sent to Rome so many works of art that he provoked the outrage of many important Romans. The case for Samos was presented in the Roman Senate Cicerone and the Samians built in Iraion the altar of Cicerone.
  In the 40 / 39 BC Samos was visited by Antony and Cleopatra along with their armies and fleet. After their defeat in the sea battle of Aktio the 31 BC the victorious Octabian Augustus enchanted by the island spent two winters there the 30 and 19 / 18 BC and granted the Samians roman citizenship and returned all statues taken by Antony from Iraion.
•Tiberius heir of Augustus granted back to Iraio the right of asylum, which brought back to Iraio its old splendor.
•Caligula dreamt of rebuilding the palace of Polykrates.
•Nero granted Samos its independence and helped the island to recover after it was hit by disastrous earthquakes.
•Claudius built the temple of Dionysus.
•Vespian, however, abolished the independence of the island and assigned it to the roman province of the island with Rhodes as its administrative center.

This text is cited Febr 2004 from the Municipality of Pythagorio URL below

Byzantine Period

  Subsequent to the loss of its independence from the romans, Samos entered in an era of decadence. This state of things continued throughout the first period of the Byzantine Empire and even if the historical sources for this period are scarce, it is believed that the population of the island diminished dramatically. Samos was raided by pirates during the reign of Ioulianos (361-363 AD) by Goths, Alanans (5th century AD), Slavs (6th century AD) and Arab Saracens the 7th century.
  The 7th century AD the heirs of Heraklios took over the administrative and military restructuring of the empire and created a mighty fleet. They introduced the institution of Themata. These were military units permanently stationed to different areas of the Empire responsible for its defense. Land was given to the soldiers so they did not only defend the Empire but their homes and land too. The 9th century AD the naval Thema of Samos was created, which controlled the opposite coasts of Asia Minor. The Thema of Samos took part in the campaigns against the Saracens and especially at the liberation of Crete from Nikiphoros Phokas the 961 AD.
  In 1312 the Turks attack repeatedly the island and its inhabitants find security in the mountainous castles of Lazaros and Loulouda. After the disastrous earthquake of 1476 the inhabitants of the island flee from Samos.
  In 1546 the French traveler Pier Belon passed through Samos and reported in his journal that he did not come across any village in the island and that there were only shepherds in the highlands.

This text is cited Febr 2004 from the Municipality of Pythagorio URL below, which contains images

Turkish occupation

  The 1562 the sultan's admiral Kilidz Pashas due to a sea storm unbarks in Samos. He was deeply impressed by the natural beauty of the island and after the erg of his officer Nikolaos Sarakinis from Patmos, he asked from the sultan to place the island under his control and to recolonize it.
  With the sultans decree a lot of privileges were given to Christians who would colonize Samos and it was strictly forbidden for a Turk to inhabit the island or even stay there for a brief time. Greeks from all over Greece colonized the island. The names of their place of origin can still be found in the names of existing villages such as: Mitilinioi, Arvanites, Koumaioi from Kimi, Vourliotes from Vourla of Minor Asia, Pagondas from the village with the same name in Evoia, Moraitohori etc.
  In 1673, according to the English traveler Randolph, the population of Samos was 10000 people In 1800 the French Tournof reports that the exquisite Samos wine was being exported to France and that there was an important production of silk.

This text is cited Febr 2004 from the Municipality of Pythagorio URL below, which contains images

The revolution of 1821

  Despite its proximity to Asia Minor, Samos throughout the Greek struggle for independence was a Greek stronghold for the control of the southeast Aegean.
  The leading figure of the Revolution was Likourgos Logothetis, members of the secret organization, Philiki Etaireia. The 18th of April 1821 the Samians under the command of Kostantinos Lahanas raised the flag of the revolution in Pigadakia of Vathi.
  Thanks to their good organization the revolutionaries successfully defended the island from numerous Turkish attacks. One of the most important defense structure used was the Castle of Likourgos in Pythagorio.
  The 5th of July 1821 the Turks tried to invaded from the promontory Georgis east of Pythagorio, where they encountered heroic resistance for few Samians under the command of Kapetan Stamati. The Turks were annihilated and since that day the promontory is called Phonias "killer".   The 5th of August 1824 in the straits of Mykali the Turkish fleet, under the leadership of Hosref, was defeated by the Greek fleet under the command of Georgios Sahtouris.
  Kanaris with his incendiary vessel blew up the Turkish flagship in the Eptastadios Porthmos. The next day, the 6th of August, the day of the Transfiguration of Virgin Mary, the Greeks celebrated their victory and latter constructed the church of the Transfiguration of Virgin Mary next to the castle of Licourgos in memory of this great victory.
  The 24th until the 29th August 1824 in the nearby gulf of Gerodas the greatest sea battle of the Revolution took place. The Greek fleet with just 70 ships and under the leadership of Andreas Miaoulis, vanquished the Turkish-Egyptian fleet numbering triple the amount of vessels.   Despite its decisive role in the Revolution, the great powers, England, France and Russia with the treaty of London in 1830 did not contain Samos in the New Greek State. Samos was declared a Hegemony under the protection of the Sultan, with a Christian ruler chosen by the Sultan. Likourgos Logothetis along with 6000 other Samian not accepting the new regime abandoned the island.

This text is cited Febr 2004 from the Municipality of Pythagorio URL below, which contains images

The Hegemony

  Thanks to the relative independence that the Hegemony assured, a new period of development began in Samos. The road system was built, the sector of public health and the education were organized and there was an important development of arts and sports.
  In 1849 with the publishing of the New Administrative Charta the common law was redefined to a more liberal direction. The special political system of Samos was the cause for the development of social and political institutions different from those of other islands.
  In 1837 the central school of Vathi was founded, a high school in Mitilinioi and other schools in the villages and in 1854 the central school of Vathi became the 1st Pythagorio High School.
  Between 1842 until 1862 the new port of Tigani (Pythagorio) was built having as foundation the ancient port of Samos. In 1863 the first newspaper "Samos" was printed. All official decrees of the Hegemony were published by "Samos".
  From 1881 until 1912 there were continuous struggles for independence form the sultan. The 11th of November 1912 in the church of Agios Spiridonas the representatives of the people of Samos unanimously voted the unification of the island with Greece. The leading figure of the unification was Themistoklis Sophoulis.

20th century

  After 1900 the systematic cultivation of tobacco and vine begun. The exquisite Muscat wine of Samos was exported mainly in Germany, Holland and France while the tobacco in the USA and Germany. The tobacco industry flourished until the economic crisis of 1930. In 1932 there were public tobacco factories in the port of Vathi, in Tigani (Pythagorio) and in Neo Karlovassi. In Karlovassi 40 small and large leather factories were operating, employing 300-400 workers.
  Throughout the era of sail ships Samos had an important role in this industry and with the arrival of the steamships the "Atmoploia Samou" was founded by the commercial house of Iglessis in 1910. The construction of ships had a notable development thanks to the Samian pinewood.
  In 1932 small sail ships and mechanized, with internal combustion engines, were being built in different locations of the island. The most important were in Tigani (Pithagorio), in Marathokabos and in Kalabaktassi. It is estimated that Samos built half of the Greek fleet.
  The port of Pithagorio linked Greece with the Dodecanese, which was under Italian occupation and all commerce with the coasts of Asia Minor was conducted through Pythagorio.
  During the 2nd world war the Greek and allied forces used Pythagorio for their movement from and to Asia Minor. The people of Samos played a decisive role in the resistance against the German and Italian invaders. With the surrender of Italy the Italian commander of the Kouneo brigade placed his men under the command of Bishop Eirinaios and Greek forces (Ieros Lohos) and latter English forces come to the island from the Middle East.
  1st-17th November 1943 elements of Ieros Lohos (The Sacred Band) parachuted successfully while others landed by sea in Samos and organized the defense of the island against the Germans.
  The 17th of November 1943 bombarded Samos and especially Pythagorio the port used by the Italians. A lot of people fled to the Monastery of Spiliani. The germans conquered the island but the resistance continued on the mountains until the final liberation of the island.

This text is cited Febr 2004 from the Municipality of Pythagorio URL below, which contains images

Participation in the fights of the Greeks

The naval battle of Mycale, 479 B.C.

  On the same day when the Persians were so stricken at Plataea, it so happened that they suffered a similar fate at Mykale in Ionia. When the Greeks who had come in their ships with Leutychides the Lacedaemonian were encamped at Delos, certain messengers came to them there from Samos, Lampon of Thrasycles, Athenagoras son of Archestratides, and Hegesistratus son of Aristagoras. The Samians had sent these, keeping their despatch secret from the Persians and the tyrant Theomestor son of Androdamas, whom the Persians had made tyrant of Samos. When they came before the generals, Hegesistratus spoke long and vehemently: 'If the Ionians but see you', he said, 'they will revolt from the Persians, and the barbarians will not remain; but if they do remain, you will have such a prey as never again'. He begged them in the name of the gods of their common worship to deliver Greeks from slavery and drive the barbarian away. That, he said, would be an easy matter for them, 'for the Persian ships are unseaworthy and no match for yours; and if you have any suspicion that we may be tempting you deceitfully, we are ready to be taken in your ships as hostages'.
  As the Samian stranger was pleading so earnestly, Leutychides asked him (whether it was that he desired to know for the sake of a presage, or through some happy chance of a god), 'Samian stranger, what is your name'? 'Hegesistratus', he replied. Then Leutychides cut short whatever else Hegesistratus had begun to say, and cried: 'I accept the omen of your name, Samian stranger; now see to it that before you sail from here you and those who are with you pledge that the Samians will be our zealous allies'.
  He said this and added deed to word. For straightway the Samians bound themselves by pledge and oath to alliance with the Greeks. This done, the rest sailed away, but Leutychides bade Hegesistratus to sail with the Greeks because of the good omen of his name...
... Having won favorable omens, the Greeks put out to sea from Delos for Samos. When they were now near Calamisa in the Samian territory, they anchored there near the temple of Hera which is in those parts, and prepared for a sea-fight. The Persians, learning of their approach, also put out to sea and made for the mainland with all their ships save the Phoenicians, whom they sent sailing away. It was determined by them in council that they would not do battle by sea, for they thought themselves overmatched; the reason of their making for the mainland was that they might be under the shelter of their army at Mykale, which had been left by Xerxes' command behind the rest of his host to hold Ionia. There were sixty thousand men in it, and Tigranes, the noblest and tallest man in Persia, was their general. It was the design of the Persian admirals to flee to the shelter of that army, and there to beach their ships and build a fence round them which should be a protection for the ship and a refuge for themselves.
   With this design they put to sea. So when they came past the temple of the Goddesses at Mykale to the Gaeson and Scolopois, where there is a temple of Eleusinian Demeter (which was built by Philistus son of Pasicles when he went with Nileus son of Codrus to the founding of Miletus), they beached their ships and fenced them round with stones and the trunks of orchard trees which they cut down; they drove in stakes around the fence and prepared for siege or victory, making ready, after consideration, for either event.
  When the Greeks learned that the barbarians had gone off to the mainland, they were not all pleased that their enemy had escaped them, and did not know whether to return back or set sail for the Hellespont. At last they resolved that they would do neither, but sail to the mainland. Equipping themselves for this with gangways and everything else necessary for a sea-fight, they held their course for Mykale. When they approached the camp, no one put out to meet them. Seeing the ships beached within the wall and a great host of men drawn up in array along the strand, Leutychides first sailed along in his ship, keeping as near to the shore as he could, and made this proclamation to the Ionians by the voice of a herald: 'Men of Ionia, you who hear us, understand what I say, for by no means will the Persians understand anything I charge you with when we join battle; first of all it is right for each man to remember his freedom and next the battle-cry "Hebe": and let him who hears me tell him who has not heard it'. The purpose of this act was the same as Themsitocles' purpose at Artemisium; either the message would be unknown to the barbarians and would prevail with the Ionians, or if it were thereafter reported to the barbarians, it would cause them to mistrust their Greek allies.
   After this counsel of Leutychides, the Greeks brought their ships to land and disembarked on the beach, where they formed a battle column. But the Persians, seeing the Greeks prepare for battle and exhort the Ionians, first of all took away the Samians' armor, suspecting that they would aid the Greeks; for indeed when the barbarian's ships brought certain Athenian captives, who had been left in Attica and taken by Xerxes' army, the Samians had set them all free and sent them away to Athens with provisions for the journey; for this reason in particular they were held suspect, as having set free five hundred souls of Xerxes' enemies. Furthermore, they appointed the Milesians to guard the passes leading to the heights of Mykale, alleging that they were best acquainted with the country. Their true reason, however, for so doing was that the Milesians should be separate from the rest of their army. In such a manner the Persians safeguarded themselves from those Ionians who (they supposed) might turn against them if opportunity were given for themselves: they set their shields close to make a barricade.
   The Greeks, having made all their preparations advanced their line against the barbarians. As they went, a rumor spread through the army, and a herald's wand was seen lying by the water-line. The rumor that ran was to the effect that the Greeks were victors over Mardonius' army at a battle in Boeotia. Now there are many clear indications of the divine ordering of things, seeing that a message, which greatly heartened the army and made it ready to face danger, arrived amongst the Greeks the very day on which the Persians' disaster at Plataea and that other which was to befall them at Mykale took place.
  Moreover, there was the additional coincidence, that there were precincts of Eleusinian Demeter on both battlefields; for at Plataea the fight was near the temple of Demeter, as I have already said, and so it was to be at Mykale also. It happened that the rumor of a victory won by the Greeks with Pausanias was true, for the defeat at Plataea happened while it was yet early in the day, and the defeat of Mykale in the afternoon. That the two fell on the same day of the same month was proven to the Greeks when they examined the matter not long afterwards. Now before this rumor came they had been faint-hearted, fearing less for themselves than for the Greeks with Pausanias, that Hellas should stumble over Mardonius. But when the report sped among them, they grew stronger and swifter in their onset. So Greeks and barbarians alike were eager for battle, seeing that the islands and the Hellespont were the prizes of victory.
   As for the Athenians and those whose place was nearest them, that is, for about half of the line, their way lay over the beach and level ground; for the Lacedaemonians and those that were next to them, their way lay through a ravine and among hills. While the Lacedaemonians were making a circuit, those others on the other wing were already fighting. As long as the Persians' shields stood upright, they defended themselves and held their own in the battle, but when the Athenians and their neighbors in the line passed the word and went more zealously to work, that they and not the Lacedaemonians might win the victory, immediately the face of the fight changed. Breaking down the shields they charged all together into the midst of the Persians, who received the onset and stood their ground for a long time, but at last fled within their wall. The Athenians and Corinthians and Sicyonians and Troezenians, who were next to each other in the line, followed close after and rushed in together. But when the walled place had been razed, the barbarians made no further defense, but took to flight, all save the Persians, who gathered into bands of a few men and fought with whatever Greeks came rushing within the walls. Of the Persian leaders two escaped by flight and two were killed; Artayntes and Ithanitres, who were admirals of the fleet, escaped; Mardontes and Tigranes, the general of the land army, were killed fighting.
  While the Persians still fought, the Lacedaemonians and their comrades came up and finished what was left of the business. The Greeks too lost many men there, notably the men of Sicyon and their general Perilaus. As for the Samians who served in the Median army and had been disarmed, they, seeing from the first that victory hung in the balance, did what they could in their desire to aid the Greeks. When the other Ionians saw the Samians set the example, they also abandoned the Persians and attacked the foreigners.
  The Persians had for their own safety appointed the Milesians to watch the passes, so that if anything should happen to the Persian army such as did happen to it, they might have guides to bring them safely to the heights of Mykale. This was the task to which the Milesians were appointed for the reason mentioned above and so that they might not be present with the army and so turn against it. They acted wholly contrary to the charge laid upon them; they misguided the fleeing Persians by ways that led them among their enemies, and at last they themselves became their worst enemies and killed them. In this way Ionia revolted for the second time from the Persians.
     In that battle those of the Greeks who fought best were the Athenians, and the Athenian who fought best was one who practised the pancratium, Hermolycus son of Euthoenus. This Hermolycus on a later day met his death in a battle at Cyrnus in Carystus during a war between the Athenians and Carystians, and lay dead on Geraestus. Those who fought best after the Athenians were the men of Corinth and Troezen and Sicyon.
  When the Greeks had made an end of most of the barbarians, either in battle or in flight, they brought out their booty onto the beach, and found certain stores of wealth. Then after burning the ships and the whole of the wall, they sailed away. When they had arrived at Samos, they debated in council over the removal of all Greeks from Ionia, and in what Greek lands under their dominion it would be best to plant the Ionians, leaving the country itself to the barbarians; for it seemed impossible to stand on guard between the Ionians and their enemies forever. If, however, they should not so stand, they had no hope that the Persians would permit the Ionians to go unpunished. In this matter the Peloponnesians who were in charge were for removing the people from the lands of those Greek nations which had sided with the Persians and giving their land to the Ionians to dwell in. The Athenians disliked the whole plan of removing the Greeks from Ionia, or allowing the Peloponnesians to determine the lot of Athenian colonies, and as they resisted vehemently, the Peloponnesians yielded. It accordingly came about that they admitted to their alliance the Samians, Chians, Lesbians, and all other islanders who had served with their forces, and bound them by pledge and oaths to remain faithful and not desert their allies. When the oaths had been sworn, the Greeks set sail to break the bridges, supposing that these still held fast. So they laid their course for the Hellespont. (Herodotus 9.90.1 - 9.107.3)

This extract is from: Herodotus. The Histories (ed. A. D. Godley, 1920), Cambridge. Harvard University Press. Cited Jan 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.

Naval Battle of Lade, 494 BC

Holding the western wing with sixty ships. (see Lade )

Cyprian revolt

Samian bravery against the Persians in the Cyprian revolt

Population movements

Neapolis & Marathesium

Marathesium . . originally belonged to the people of Samos, but they gave it to the Ephesians in exchange for Neapolis, which was nearer to Samos. (Strabo 14.1.20)

Related locations/lands


At the present time, however, it (Icaria) has but few inhabitants left, and is used by Samians mostly for the grazing of cattle.

Remarkable selections

Samaena ship

The samaena is a ship of war with a boar's head design for prow and ram, but more capacious than usual and paunchlike, so that it is a good deep-sea traveller and a swift sailor too. [4] It got this name because it made its first appearance in Samos, where Polycrates the tyrant had some built.

The Corcyraean boys

Periander (of Corinth) son of Cypselus sent to Alyattes at Sardis three hundred boys, sons of notable men in Corcyra, to be made eunuchs. The Corinthians who brought the boys put in at Samos; and when the Samians heard why the boys were brought, first they instructed them to take sanctuary in the temple of Artemis, then they would not allow the suppliants to be dragged from the temple; and when the Corinthians tried to starve the boys out, the Samians held a festival which they still celebrate in the same fashion; throughout the time that the boys were seeking asylum, they held nightly dances of young men and women to which it was made a custom to bring cakes of sesame and honey, so that the Corcyraean boys might snatch these and have food. This continued to be done until the Corinthian guards left their charge and departed; then the Samians took the boys back to Corcyra.


Milesians colonized the island Icaros

Anaximenes of Lampsacus says that the Milesians colonized the islands Icaros and Leros.

Ionians & Epidaurians settle the island

The inhabitants of the island received the Ionians as settlers more of necessity than through good.will. The leader of the Ionians was Procles, the son of Pityreus, Epidaurian himself like the greater part of his followers, who had been expelled from Epidauria by Deiphontes and the Argives. This Procles was descended from Ion, son of Xuthus.

The inhabitants founded the cities:

Perinthus, a colony of Samos

Puteoli Campania, Settled by Samian, 520 BC

Oasis inhabited by Samians

Samian exiles had established Anaia

Cydonia in Crete

(Samians) settled at Cydonia in Crete, though their voyage had been made with no such intent, but rather to drive Zacynthians out of the island. Here they stayed and prospered for five years; indeed, the temples now at Cydonia and the shrine of Dictyna are the Samians' work; but in the sixth year Aeginetans and Cretans came and defeated them in a sea-fight and made slaves of them; moreover they cut off the ships' prows, that were shaped like boars' heads, and dedicated them in the temple of Athena in Aegina. The Aeginetans did this out of a grudge against the Samians; for previously the Samians, in the days when Amphicrates was king of Samos, sailing in force against Aegina, had hurt the Aeginetans and been hurt by them. This was the cause.

The place was conquered by:


  King Darius conquered Samos, the greatest of all city states, Greek or barbarian, the reason for his conquest being this: when Cambyses, son of Cyrus, invaded Egypt, many Greeks came with the army, some to trade, as was natural, and some to see the country itself; among them was Syloson, son of Aeaces, who was Polycrates' brother and in exile from Samos. This Syloson had a stroke of good luck. He was in the market at Memphis wearing a red cloak, when Darius, at that time one of Cambyses' guard and as yet a man of no great importance, saw him, and coveting the cloak came and tried to buy it. When Syloson saw Darius' eagerness, by good luck he said, 'I will not sell this for any money, but I give it to you free if you must have it so much'. Extolling this, Darius accepted the garment.
   Syloson supposed that he had lost his cloak out of foolish good nature. But in time Cambyses died, the seven rebelled against the Magus, and Darius of the seven came to the throne; Syloson then learned that the successor to the royal power was the man to whom he had given the garment in Egypt; so he went up to Susa and sat in the king's antechamber, saying that he was one of Darius' benefactors. When the doorkeeper brought word of this to the king, Darius asked 'But to what Greek benefactor can I owe thanks? In the little time since I have been king hardly one of that nation has come to us, and I have, I may say, no use for any Greek. Nevertheless bring him in, so that I may know what he means'. The doorkeeper brought Syloson in and the interpreters asked him as he stood there who he was and what he had done to call himself the king's benefactor. Then Syloson told the story of the cloak, and said that it was he who had given it. 'Most generous man', said Darius, 'it was you who gave me a present when I had as yet no power; and if it was a small one, I was none the less grateful then than I am now when I get a big one. In return, I give you gold and silver in abundance so you may never be sorry that you did Darius son of Hystaspes good'. Syloson answered, 'Do not give me gold, O king, or silver, but Samos, my country, which our slave has now that my brother Polycrates has been killed by Oroetes; give me this without killing or enslaving'.
  Having heard this, Darius sent an army and Otanes, one of the seven, to command it, instructing him to do whatever Syloson asked. So Otanes went down to the coast and got his army ready.
  Now Samos was ruled by Maeandrius, son of Maeandrius, who had authority delegated by Polycrates. He wanted to be the justest of men, but that was impossible. For when he learned of Polycrates' death, first he set up an altar to Zeus the Liberator and marked out around it that sacred enclosure which is still to be seen in the suburb of the city; when this had been done, he called an assembly of all the citizens, and addressed them thus: "To me, as you know, have come Polycrates' scepter and all of his power, and it is in my power now to rule you. But I, so far as it lies in me, shall not do myself what I blame in my neighbor. I always disliked it that Polycrates or any other man should lord it over men like himself. Polycrates has fulfilled his destiny, and inviting you to share his power I proclaim equality. Only I claim for my own privilege that six talents of Polycrates' wealth be set apart for my use, and that I and my descendants keep the priesthood of Zeus the Liberator, whose temple I have founded, and now I give you freedom". Such was Maeandrius' promise to the Samians. But one of them arose and answered: "But you are not even fit to rule us, low-born and vermin, but you had better give an account of the monies that you have handled".
  This was the speech of Telesarchus, a man of consequence among the citizens. But Maeandrius, realizing that if he let go of the sovereignty someone else would make himself sovereign instead, resolved not to let it go. Withdrawing into the acropolis, he sent for the citizens individually as if he would give an account of the money; then he seized and bound them. So they were imprisoned, and afterwards Maeandrius fell sick. His brother Lycaretus thought him likely to die, and, so that he might the more easily make himself master of Samos, he put all the prisoners to death. They had, it would seem, no desire to be free.
  So when the Persians brought Syloson back to Samos, no one raised a hand against them, but Maeandrius and those of his faction offered to evacuate the island under a flag of truce; Otanes agreed to this, and after the treaty was made, the Persians of highest rank sat down on seats facing the acropolis.
  Now Maeandrius the sovereign had a crazy brother named Charilaus, who lay bound in the dungeon for some offense; this man heard what was going on, and by peering through the dungeon window saw the Persians sitting there peaceably; whereupon he cried with a loud voice that he wanted to talk to Maeandrius. His brother, hearing him, had Charilaus loosed and brought before him. No sooner had he been brought than he attempted with reviling and abuse to persuade Maeandrius to attack the Persians. "Although I am your brother, you coward", he said, "and did no wrong deserving of prison, you have bound and imprisoned me; but when you see the Persians throwing you out of house and home, you have no courage to avenge yourself, though you could so easily beat them? If you are yourself afraid of them, give me your foreign guards, and I will punish them for coming here; as for you, I will give you safe conduct out of the island".
  This was what Charilaus said; and Maeandrius took his advice, to my thinking not because he was so foolish as to suppose that he would be strong enough to defeat the king, but because he did not want Syloson to recover Samos safe and sound with no trouble. He wanted therefore by provoking the Persians to weaken Samos as much as he could before surrendering it, for he was well aware that if the Persians were hurt they would be furiously angry with the Samians. Besides, he knew that he could get himself safely off the island whenever he liked, having built a secret passage leading from the acropolis to the sea. Maeandrius then set sail from Samos; but Charilaus armed all the guards, opened the acropolis' gates, and attacked the Persians. These supposed that a full agreement had been made, and were taken unawares; the guard fell upon them and killed the Persians of highest rank, those who were carried in litters. They were engaged in this when the rest of the Persian force came up in reinforcement, and, hard-pressed, the guards retreated into the acropolis.
  The Persian captain Otanes, seeing how big a loss the Persians had suffered, deliberately forgot the command given him at his departure by Darius not to kill or enslave any Samian but to deliver the island intact to Syloson; and he commanded his army to kill everyone they took, men and boys alike. Then, while some of the Persians laid siege to the acropolis, the rest killed everyone they met, inside the temples and outside the temples alike.
  Maeandrius sailed to Lacedaemon, escaping from Samos; and after he arrived there and brought up the possessions with which he had left his country, it became his habit to make a display of silver and gold drinking cups; while his servants were cleaning these, he would converse with the king of Sparta, Cleomenes son of Anaxandrides, and would bring him to his house. As Cleomenes marvelled greatly at the cups whenever he saw them, Maeandrius would tell him to take as many as he liked. Maeandrius made this offer two or three times; Cleomenes showed his great integrity in that he would not accept; but realizing that there were others in Lacedaemon from whom Maeandrius would get help by offering them the cups, he went to the ephors and told them it would be best for Sparta if this Samian stranger quit the country, lest he persuade Cleomenes himself or some other Spartan to do evil. The ephors listened to his advice and banished Maeandrius by proclamation.
  As for Samos, the Persians swept it clear and turned it over uninhabited to Syloson. But afterwards Otanes, the Persian general, helped to settle the land, prompted by a dream and a disease that he contracted in his genitals.

This extract is from: Herodotus. The Histories (ed. A. D. Godley, 1920), Cambridge. Harvard University Press. Cited Jan 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.

Androclus of Athens

But the Ephesians under Androclus made war on Leogorus, the son of Procles, who reigned in Samos after his father, and after conquering them in a battle drove the Samians out of their island, accusing them of conspiring with the Carians against the Ionians.

Timotheus of Athens, 365 B.C.

He exiled most of the inhabitants and settled Athenians in the island.


Samian War, 440-439 BC

  In the sixth year of the truce (for 30 years between Athenians and Laceddemonians), war broke out between the Samians and Milesians about Priene. Worsted in the war, the Milesians came to Athens with loud complaints against the Samians. In this they were joined by certain private persons from Samos itself, who wished to revolutionize the government. Accordingly the Athenians sailed to Samos with forty ships and set up a democracy; took hostages from the Samians, fifty boys and as many men, lodged them in Lemnos, and after leaving a garrison in the island returned home. But some of the Samians had not remained in the island, but had fled to the continent. Making an agreement with the most powerful of those in the city, and an alliance with Pissuthnes, son of Hystaspes, the then satrap of Sardis, they got together a force of seven hundred mercenaries, and under cover of night crossed over to Samos. Their first step was to rise on the commons, most of whom they secured, their next to steal their hostages from Lemnos; after which they revolted, gave up the Athenian garrison left with them and its commanders to Pissuthnes, and instantly prepared for an expedition against Miletus. The Byzantines also revolted with them.
   As soon as the Athenians heard the news, they sailed with sixty ships against Samos. Sixteen of these went to Caria to look out for the Phoenician fleet, and to Chios and Lesbos carrying round orders for reinforcements, and so never engaged; but forty-four ships under the command of Pericles with nine colleagues gave battle, off the island of Tragia, to seventy Samian vessels, of which twenty were transports, as they were sailing from Miletus. Victory remained with the Athenians. Reinforced afterwards by forty ships from Athens, and twenty-five Chian and Lesbian vessels, the Athenians landed, and having the superiority by land invested the city with three walls; it was also invested from the sea. Meanwhile Pericles took sixty ships from the blockading squadron, and departed in haste for Caunus and Caria, intelligence having been brought in of the approach of the Phoenician fleet to the aid of the Samians; indeed Stesagoras and others had left the island with five ships to bring them.
  But in the meantime the Samians made a sudden sally, and fell on the camp, which they found unfortified. Destroying the look-out vessels, and engaging and defeating such as were being launched to meet them, they remained masters of their own seas for fourteen days, and carried in and carried out what they pleased. But on the arrival of Pericles, they were once more shut up. Fresh reinforcements afterwards arrived--forty ships from Athens with Thucydides, Hagnon, and Phormio; twenty with Tlepolemus and Anticles, and thirty vessels from Chios and Lesbos. After a brief attempt at fighting, the Samians, unable to hold out, were reduced after a nine months' siege, and surrendered on conditions; they razed their walls, gave hostages, delivered up their ships, and arranged to pay the expenses of the war by instalments. The Byzantines also agreed to be subject as before.(Herodotus 1.115.1-1.117.3)

This extract is from: Thucydides. The Peloponnesian War (ed. Richard Crawley, 1910). Cited Jan 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains comments & interesting hyperlinks.

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