Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Theodoros Kolokotronis Statue, Mytilene

Theodoros Kolokotronis is one of the greatest national heroes of Modern Greece, fighting against the Ottoman Empire during the Independence struggle of Greece in the 1820s. Many cities and historical places all around Greece have his statue, in order to show their respect to this national hero. Here, we find the statue of Theodoros Kolokotronis in Mytilene, the capital of Lesvos.
Also known as the Elder of Morias, Kolokotronis was born in Messinia. His farther participated in the rebellion supported by Empress Catherine II of Russia (1770), and was killed along with his two brothers by the Turks. As a result, Kolokotronis and his mother moved to her hometown in Arkadia, where he was raised. In 1805 he participated in the naval missions of the Russian fleet, during the Russian – Turkish War. In 1806 a decree was announced for his persecution. He was chased by the Turks all over the Peloponnese and eventually managed to escape on a boat to the then Russian territory of Kythera. In 1810 he went to Zakynthos and was enlisted in the Greek corps of the British army.

In 1818 he became a member of the Filiki Etairia, a secret organisation, which prepared the way for the Greek Revolution against the Ottoman Empire. He was a leader in a number of military actions during the Revolution in Southern Greece.
When part of Modern Greece was Independent, he supported its first Governorn, Ioannis Kapodistrias and his policies. However, in 1833 he had a conflict with the Regents and King Otto, resulting in his imprisonment in the Palamidi Castle, in Nafplio, which was the first capital of Greece. In 1834 he was sentenced todeath; however, after Otto’s coming of age, he received a royal pardon and became an Advisor to the Country. Kolokotronis died in 1843 after a stroke, while returning from a celebration at the palace.

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