sitemap contact terms

Greeklanguage seperatorEnglish (United Kingdom)Russianlanguage seperatorChinese

22.08.17
 > ABOUT > Foreign Travellers


NEWSLETTER

Foreign travelers in Santorini


The image of Santorini in 1650-1850 is colored by the narrations of the era's foreign travelers*.

Francois Richard
The first narration is of French priest Francois Richard, who together with the Jesuit monks settled in the island in the second half of the 17th century. He gives such information as "...the island's resources are poor. It does not produce any cereals for its residents to feed except barley and is not irrigated by any streams nor water springs. If the rain doesn't fill the cisterns, people die from thirst or drink brackish water from some water wells near the sea.
Cisterns are carved in solid ground and then are whitewashed. But most of the villages' houses or farmhouses even churches and chapels are underground. Therefore, many families have over their houses' roofs the fields, the vineyards and the gardens they cultivate. The island's poverty has made holidays nonexistent.
Everyone works, even children, and women most of all because they never stop. They weave cotton fabrics but also engage in farming activities. The only thing I don't like about them is their dress.
It makes you think that they are descendants of the ancient Vakchides who when they did their orgies used to run in the mountains and the valleys having naked arms and wearing short clothes. Their dress is so short that exceeds their knees only by a little... Because they do not consider having their chest uncovered to be inappropriate they also do not hesitate to lift their sleeves and let their arms show when working. The good thing is though that this does not happen with cunning in mind..."

G.A. Olivier
Interesting facts for Santorini, its residents and their occupations are given by the emissary of the French Government, G. A. Olivier in his book in approximately 1800:

"The Santorinians are industrious, virtuous and abstemious... The best product of Santorini is its wine known as vino santo. Its taste is becoming better with time and its production is exported almost in full to Russia. The winemakers have carved huge domed «kanaves» within the white pumice. The domed roof seems very solid despite the material being soft".

Francesco Piacenza
The Italian geographer described in detail the topography of Santorini and its Kastelia in his book published in 1688. He wrote for the Kasteli of Skaros:

"...Built on top of the ruins of an ancient fortified city it is today the capital of the whole island. Being uphill and built high up on the most isolated and steep place, one can only go up with a great effort and with the escort of experienced drivers who climb using their hands and feet (!)... The houses of this Kasteli are no more than 150. It is decorated with a grand rock rising on top of it towards the north. This rock is a powerful well preserved stronghold, that is being constantly maintained so as not tear down on the houses and people beneath it and cause a great catastrophe...".

V. Fontanier
V. Fontainer, another official visitor who came on the island in 1828 found Santorini in a state of prosperity.:

"... Santorini is an example of people's skill. This island produces nothing else except wine however no other place in the Archipelagos has in such abundance all the things one needs to live well. No other place is so advanced and so close to Europe than Santorini...".

* Data from the text of priest Ieronymos Delendas entitled "Travelers of 17th and 19th century in Santorini", from the book by I. M. Danezis "Santorini, Thera, Therassia, Aspronisi, Volcanoes". Editor in chief Emm. A. Lignos.

Περιηγητές
Περιηγητές

social Twitter YouTube Facebook


 

Large map

view