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Arcadia: A “must” to see in Greece

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)    The trip to Arcadia in central Peloponnese reveals historical, religious, and environmental beauties little known. Some of these beauties are the gorges of Loussios River, as well as the nearby historic cities Dimitsana and Karitaina.   The rare variety of fauna and flora but also the landscape’s serene life -due to the difficulty of access- made it possible for monastic life to flourish over the centuries.   Monasteries clinging on Loussios rocks and the numerous shrines, chapels and churches, are impressive monuments of the life of Orthodox monks. The best known monastery is the Philosophou, founded in 963 AD.  The monastery served as “a secret school” during the Ottoman rule, to preserve the Greek language and Orthodox faith. Inside the monastery lie frescoes from the 17th century and precious icons. Prodromou monastery, probably founded in the 16th century, is currently the largest monastery with some 14 monks. Almost invisible, literally hanging from the wall of rock, it was used as hospital during the Greek War of Independence.  Loussios River and its many streams have been the source of the prosperity in the region during the 18th century, when economic activity revolved around water. The water mills were used, inter alia, to produce gun powder, fuelling Greece’s independence war in 1821. The city of Dimitsana nowadays hosts an open-air hydraulics museum, which reproduces the activity of the old water mills.

March 25: Independence Day of Greece

GREEK NEWS AGENDA)            The celebration of Independence Day on March 25th refers to the Greek War of Independence (1821-1829). The declaration of the Greek Revolution against the Ottomans, the long war and its successful outcome with the establishment of an independent state inaugurate procedures of change which introduce the Greek society to modernity.  Eugene Delacroix’s painting of the Massacre at Chios (left), shows sick, dying Greek civilians about to be slaughtered by the Turks. It expresses sympathy for the Greek cause in their war of independence against the Turks.  The day draws inspiration from one of the holiest days for Greek Orthodox Christians, the Annunciation of the Theotokos (Virgin Mary).  Secretary General of Information: About Greece- History of Modern Greece