Several architectural phases are distinguished in the fortification
walls of Naupactos, dated from the Greek antiquity until the Turkish occupation.
Two walls run down the slope of the hill, starting from the top, one towards the
east, and the other towards the west. Before they reach the coast, they form an
angle and block the entrance to the harbour. Four transverse walls join these
two, thus forming five sections. The enceinte is reinforced with rectangular and
The castle is built on the site of the ancient acropolis. Naupactos
was destroyed by an earhtquake in A.D.553 and from the 8th century on, it became
the capital of the fifth Theme of Byzantium. It remained under Greek control until
1204, when it was given away to the Venetians. In 1210, Michael Angelos Comnenos
included the city in the properties of the Despotate of Epiros. In 1294 it came
under the control of Philip d'Anjou and in 1360 was conquered by the Albanian
leader, Ghino Buo Spata. From 1407 until 1444 it was occupied by the Venetians
and then by the Turks, who kept it until 1687. From 1687 until 1699 it was again
under the Venetian control and remained under Turkish domination until 1829.
The site has not been systematically excavated. The trenches opened
in 1980-81 to the north of the church of Prophetes Elias brought to light the
remains of a Byzantine bath and a Byzantine church.
Cleaning and consolidation work is conducted every year by the 8th
Ephorate of Byzantine and Classical Antiquities. The crumbling sections of masonry
are repaired and the foundations in all parts of the wall that present stability
problems are restored.
As well, significant is the Clock
A square building
made of dressed stone terminating in a cornice likewise of stone. On two sides
hang the two round faces of the clock. Above it are four little pillars of brickwork,
connected by semi-circular apses. It was built at the beginning of this century
on the site of the Byzantine fortress (castro) of Naupaktos. The site is prominent
and the bell-tower is a fine example of a particular category of architecture.
In 1991 the clock was repaired.