History of Macedonia 1354-1833

A. Vacalopoulos


XVI. Macedonia during the Greek revolution of 1821


3. The revolution on Thasos



At the beginning of the winter of 1821, thirteen ships from Psará, which were sailing along the coasts of Ionia and Thrace to prevent



Fig. 198. Road in the village of Theológos

Fig. 198. Road in the village of Theológos.



the transport of Turkish forces to Greece and to observe the movements of the Turkish fleet that was anchored in the Hellespont, landed on Thasos and roused the inhabitants to revolt. The presence of the ships, together with the splendid example of the struggle going on in nearby Chalcidice, exercised a decisive influence on the men of Thasos. According to an oral tradition which still survives, the inhabitants rose in revolt, with the assistance of other Greeks, under the leadership of the 'President' of the island, Hadji Giorgis (see fig. 197) from Theológos (see fig. 198). He had been initiated into the Society of Friends by his fellow-islander, the archimandrite Callinicus Stamatiades (see fig. 199).


In a short biographical note, Stamatiades informs us that, for some years before the revolution, from the age of nine until he was twenty-one, he had lived at Karyés on Mount Athos in the house of a maternal





uncle. He does not say where he was when the Greek revolution broke out and, indeed, makes no mention of that event. However, there is evidence of his direct or indirect participation in the revolt on Thasos, and probably on Athos too, in a document of the newly-constituted Greek state, in which King Otho of Greece approves of the award to Callinicus of a "silver medal for his services during the War of Independence".



Fig. 199. The Archimandrite Callinicus Stamatiades

Fig. 199. The Archimandrite Callinicus Stamatiades.

(Α. Ε. Bakalopoulos, Thasos, Paris 1953, plate VIII)



After the outbreak of the revolution, the people of Thasos seized the Ağa (i.e. the Voyvoda) and took him to the shore of Macedonia, without harming him. According to oral tradition, a united force of Greeks from Thasos and from elsewhere defeated the Turks at Potós, the port of Theológos, killing a good number of them. Those Turks who escaped,





fled to the village of Kazavíti, where they joined forces with other Turks and crossed to Kavála on the opposite shore. They never returned to the island, for when it was placed under the Sultan's rule at the end of 1821, the Greek corsairs continued to ravage Thasos. Indeed, the Turks would not venture to the island even to arrange leases on their estates; instead, the Greeks would go to Kavála and rent the estates on such favourable terms that many of them made long-term profits out of the arrangement. This state of affairs continued until the well-known exchange of populations between Greece and Turkey in 1923, when the National Bank of Greece took over the management of the Turkish estates.


Around the end of August or the beginning of September 1821, the inhabitants of Thasos learnt that Turkish forces were gathering on the Macedonian shore opposite the island. They sent two emissaries to Psará to ask for assistance, and the Psarians sent the ships of Anagnostis Kalimeris and Manolis Valavanos, which bombarded and dispersed the Turkish concentrations at Keramotí (opposite Thasos) [1].



1. Vacalopoulos, Thasos, pp. 39-41, where the relevant bibliography is to be found. See also of same author, Ἀρχιμ. Καλλίνικος Σταματιάδης ὁ Θάσιος, «Μακεδονικὰ» 5 (1961-1963) 185.


[Previous] [Next]

[Back to Index]