Greece, history of

▪ Byzantine to modern

      history of the area from the Byzantine (Byzantine Empire) period, beginning about AD 300, to the present. For earlier periods, see Aegean civilizations; ancient Greek civilization; and Hellenistic Age.

      Geographically, Greece forms the southernmost extension of the Balkan Peninsula. It is a region dominated by mountain systems, and, although not particularly high, these cover some 80 percent of the surface area. The main formations are those of the Dinaric Alps, which push down from the western Balkan region in a southeasterly direction and which, in the Pindus Mountains, dominate western and central Greece. Extensions and spurs of these mountains form the salient features of southern Greece and the Peloponnese. The Balkan range lies north of Greece, extending eastward from the Morava River for about 340 miles (550 kilometres) as far as the Black Sea coast, but the Rhodope Mountains form an arc stretching from this range through Macedonia toward the plain of Thrace. The coastal and riverine plains are in consequence relatively limited in extent; moreover, they are differentiated by marked variations in climate, ranging from the Mediterranean type along the coast to the continental type inland, in the highlands. These plains reveal an accentuated settlement pattern consisting of a series of fragmented geopolitical entities, separated by ridges of highlands, that fan out along river valleys toward the coastal areas. This structure played a significant role in shaping the history of preclassical and classical Greece and continued to do so in the medieval period; for, in spite of the administrative unity and relative effectiveness of the fiscal and military administration of the later Roman and Byzantine states, these still had to function in a geophysical context in which communications were particularly difficult. The southern Balkan Peninsula has no obvious geographic focal point. The main cities in the medieval period were Thessaloníki and Constantinople, yet these were peripheral to the peninsula and its fragmented landscape. The degree of Byzantine political control during the Middle Ages is clearly reflected in this. In the Rhodope Mountains, perhaps the most inaccessible of those mentioned, as well as in the Pindus Mountains, state authority, whether Byzantine or Ottoman, always remained a rather distant factor in the lives of the inhabitants. These were regions in which paganism and heresy could survive with little interference or control from a central government or church establishment.

      This geophysical structure also has affected land use. The highland regions are dominated by forest and woodland and the lower foothills by woodland, scrub, and rough pasture. Only the plains of Thessaly and Macedonia offer the possibility of extensive arable exploitation. The riverine plains and the coastal strips associated with them (such as the region around the Gulf of Argolis and, much more limited in extent, the Gulf of Corinth) present a similar but more restricted potential; they have been used for orchards, viticulture, and oleoculture. Inevitably, the pattern of settlement of larger urban centres as well as of rural communities is largely determined by these features.

      Finally, the relationship between this landscape of mountains, gulfs, and valleys, on the one hand, and the sea, on the other, is fundamental to the cultural as well as to the political and military history of Greece. The sea surrounds Greece except along its northern bounds; and the extended coastline, including gulfs such as those of Corinth and Thessaloníki, which penetrate deep into the interior, has served as a means of communication with surrounding areas to the extent that even interior districts of the Balkans often share in the Mediterranean cultural world. The sea was also a source of danger: seaborne access from the west, from the south, or from the northeast via the Black Sea made Greece and the Peloponnese particularly vulnerable to invasion and dislocation.

Greece during the Byzantine period (c. AD 300–c. 1453)

Late Roman administration
      At the beginning of the 4th century the regions comprising very approximately the modern state of Greece were divided among eight provinces: Rhodope, Macedonia, Epirus Nova, Epirus Vetus, Thessaly, Achaea, Crete, and the Islands (Insulae). Of the eight provinces, all except Rhodope and the Islands were a part of the larger diocese of Moesia, which stretched up to the Danube River in the north; Rhodope belonged to the diocese of Thrace, while the Islands were classed as part of the diocese of Asiana, consisting, for the most part, of the westernmost provinces of Asia Minor. By the early years of the 5th century, administrative readjustments had divided the older diocese of Moesia into two sections, creating in the north the diocese of Dacia and in the south that of Macedonia, made up of the provinces of Macedonia I and II, with Epirus Novus and Epirus Vetus, Thessaly, Achaea, and Crete. Further changes during the middle of the 6th century resulted in the establishment of a military command known as the quaestura exercitus, a zone made up of the Islands and Caria, from the diocese of Asiana, together with the province of Moesia II on the Danube; it was designed as a means of providing for the armies based along the northern frontier in regions that were too impoverished or devastated to support them adequately.

      In turn, these diocesan groups were parts of larger administrative units, the praetorian prefectures. Most of the Greek provinces were in the praetorian prefecture of Illyricum, except Rhodope, which, as a province of the diocese of Thrace, was in the prefecture of Oriens, as were the Islands. This pattern was radically altered by the developments of the 7th century.

      Some of the ancient names for the regions of Greece disappeared from everyday use. However, many continued to be used in literary and administrative contexts, at least, especially in the administration of the church, or were revived by classicizing writers during the late Byzantine period. Thus, Aitolia, Akarnania, Achaia, Arkadia, and Lakedaimon were used in the 13th century and after. Similarly, in central Greece Boeotia, Euboea, and Thessaly all survived, in different contexts. Typical of their history is Euboea, which was so called until the 8th century, after which it was referred to variously as Chalkis or Euripus. After 1204 Western writers identified it as Negroponte, although the Byzantines also called it Euboea. The names Epirus and Macedonia seem never to have dropped out of regular use. However, many new names also were coined during the Byzantine period; these tended to be geographic descriptions (such as Strymon or Boleron) used for both provincial and administrative divisions as well as to describe regions with a particular ethnic composition, for example, Vlachia in southern Thessaly.

The evolution of Byzantine institutions
      As in other parts of the Roman world, the function of cities (city) in the administrative structure of the state underwent a gradual evolution from the 3rd century on as the central government found it increasingly necessary to intervene in municipal affairs in order to assure itself of its revenues. This need for intervention developed when the vitality of cities became eroded as a result of a range of factors, most particularly the economic damage to urban infrastructures that accompanied the civil wars and barbarian inroads of the 3rd century. Further, the so-called “decline” of the curial order, that is to say, the weakening of the fiscal and economic independence of many towns by the tendency of members of urban elites to avoid municipal obligations, played a role. Finally, in the eastern parts of the empire, the transformation of Byzantium into Constantinople as a new imperial capital in 330 had important results for patterns of internal trade and commerce as well as for social relations between provincial elites and the state establishment. Nevertheless, the cities of the southern Balkans were able to survive the raids and devastation of both Goths and Huns in the 4th and 5th centuries, and there is no evidence that cities ceased to carry on their function, where it existed, as centres of market activity, local administration, and social life. Those cities that were artificial—i.e., purely administrative creations of the Roman state—were the first to suffer, and, under difficult conditions, they generally disappeared. On the other hand, the state—through its regional and central military administration—appears also to have been involved in promoting different types of smaller defended urban centres, better adapted to these conditions.

      In the 7th century a series of developments combined to further promote what was already in the process of becoming a radically different pattern of settlement and administration. In the first place, the results of the long-term developments already referred to, in terms of both social and economic stability, must be borne in mind. (Of particular significance is the fact that the municipal landowning elites transferred their attention—especially in respect of investment in the imperial system—away from their local cities to the imperial capital.) In the second place, the economic disruption brought about by the infiltration of large numbers of Slav settlers and immigrants was exacerbated by the devastation and insecurity caused by the wars between the empire and the Avars, a Turco-Mongol confederacy that was able, from the 560s to the 630s, to harness the resources of those peoples in the plain of Hungary and in the Balkans under its thrall to launch a series of extremely damaging and disruptive attacks on the empire. Although the disruptions of the earlier invasions of the Huns and Goths may have been as damaging in the short term, the Balkans were by this time suffering from the cumulative effects both of two centuries of constant insecurity and warfare and of endemic plague, which had struck the eastern empire in the 540s. It is clear from the imperial legislation of the late 5th to the 6th centuries dealing with the Danubian provinces and with Thrace, as well as from the archaeological record, that the final results of this economic disruption were to bring about the abandonment of the traditional pattern of urban economies. Even the construction of churches, which had experienced a certain efflorescence during the 6th century, virtually ceased in the 7th century; secular construction stopped; an extended process of ruralization of settlement and of economic life took place; and new populations penetrated far into the Peloponnese. The extent to which these new settlers replaced, or were able to live alongside, the indigenous population remains unclear.

      As a consequence of these changes, the traditional administration collapsed, chiefly because the government at Constantinople could control only the coastal plains and some river valleys. The cities that remained in imperial hands, such as Corinth or Thessaloníki, for example, were well-defended fortresses or had access to the sea, from where they could be supplied. Inland, tribal groupings and chieftaincies (sklaviniai) dominated many districts; and, while it appears that the empire claimed a political sovereignty over such regions, it was rarely able to make this effective or to extract regular revenues (although “tribute” was obtained at times). The sklaviniai, however, did not control the entire inland region; there were many areas in which the indigenous population and the traditional patterns of local social structure and political organization may have survived and where imperial authority may have been recognized. The evidence is too sparse to draw definite conclusions.

      Evidence for the degree of Byzantine control over the area is reflected dimly in the lists of signatories to ecclesiastical councils (especially those of 680 at Constantinople and of 787 at Nicaea) and in the various lists of bishoprics (Notitiae episcopatuum). From these, it is clear that ecclesiastical administration in the south, especially the Peloponnese, had suffered considerably. Many bishoprics were abandoned and had ceased to exist; at the council of 680 only 4 bishops from this region (Athens, Corinth, Lakedaimon, and Argos) and 12 from Macedonia attended; a (probably) 7th-century episcopal list (the Pseudo-Epiphanios) records the names of only 5 metropolitan bishops from Greece, mostly from the north.

      Administratively, those districts that remained under Byzantine control were organized from the later 7th century onward into the military province, or theme (Greek: thema), of Hellas, under its general (strategos). The theme initially encompassed in all likelihood only the easternmost parts of central Greece but gradually came to include also parts of Thessaly and, possibly, of the Peloponnese, although in the latter case only the coastal regions were involved.

      The islands of the Aegean remained largely in imperial hands. In late antiquity they had been relatively heavily populated, the larger ones among them—especially Lemnos and Thasos in the north—being well-known sources of agricultural produce. Arab piracy and raiding from the later 7th century on altered this, causing many of the smaller islands to become deserted; however, the islands recovered during the 10th century.

      Byzantine fortress-towns testify to the presence of sizable rural populations needing shelter from attack; the towns also served as refuges for people from the mainland fleeing Avar, Slav, or Bulgar raids. Administratively, they formed in the second half of the 7th century an element of the districts allotted to the naval theme (in the original sense of the term—i.e., “army”) of the Karabisianoi (Greek karabos, a light ship), which represented the rump of the quaestura exercitus. During the first half of the 8th century this command appears to have been subdivided to form the naval themes of the Kibyrrhaiotai (including parts of western Asia Minor and named after the district and town of Kibyrrha in southwestern Asia Minor), Samos or the Kolpos (Gulf) in the southern zone, and Aigaion Pelagos covering the northern districts. Further subdivisions took place in the 10th–12th centuries, so that commands of the Dodecanese or the Cyclades also appear in the sources.

      It must be stressed that, even though the archaeological record clearly supports the conclusion that a dramatic collapse of traditional urban society and economic relations occurred, it also gives evidence of significant regional variations. The process of change was neither uniform across Greece, nor was it always as extreme in one area as in another. The degree of access to imperial resources and the ability to maintain regular contact with the imperial government were factors that gave some areas a very different appearance from others. It is important that this be borne in mind when considering the history of the various regions of Greece in the following period.

Byzantine recovery
      The Byzantine recovery of effectively lost provinces began toward the end of the 8th century. The emperor Nikephoros I (802–811) is traditionally credited with a major role in this, although the process was certainly under way before his accession. The degree of Slavicization (Slav) appears to have varied considerably. For example, it is clear that by the 10th century many districts of the Peloponnese were well Hellenized and thoroughly Christian once more. Yet outposts of Slavic language and culture—sometimes partly Hellenized, often relatively independent, in practice, of central imperial control—survived in the less-accessible regions until the 13th and 14th centuries and perhaps beyond. Traces of the preconquest social and political structures of the northern Peloponnese may be reflected in the story of the widow Danelis, a rich landowner whose wealth was almost proverbial in the later 9th century. She was a sponsor of the young Basil, later Basil I (867–886), and may have represented the last in a line of Christianized but semiautonomous Slavic princelings or chieftains who had dominated the region around Patras in Achaia.

      Different parts of Greece were reconquered at different times. Epirus in the northwest was gradually placed under Byzantine military administration, which was advancing inland from the coast during the first part of the 9th century. The themes of Cephalonia (Kefallinía) and Dyrrachion (Durazzo; modern Durrës) had been established by the 830s; that of Nikopolis appeared at the end of the 9th century. The theme of the Peloponnese emerged as a separate region in 812, although it was almost certainly created before this date; that of Thessaloníki had probably been established by about 812 (although this remains debated); those of Strymon and Boleron appeared likewise during the course of the 9th century.

      Ecclesiastical organization once again reflects this process. A 9th-century list of bishoprics contains 10 Greek metropolitan sees, including those of Patras and Athens, compared with the 5 that appear in earlier records. And during the first half of the 8th century (in the context of the Iconoclastic Controversy, a religious controversy concerning the veneration of icons, or sacred images) the ecclesiastical provinces of the old prefecture of Illyricum, which had been subject to Rome, were withdrawn by the emperor Leo III (717–741) from papal authority and placed under Constantinople, thus permitting a unified program of re-Christianization of much of this region.

      As Byzantine control became firmer, and as Byzantine military and political expansion northward accelerated during the 10th and early 11th centuries, older themes were subdivided, forming a mosaic of small administrative divisions. Thus the themes of Berroia, Drougoubiteia (clearly reflecting a Slavic tribal territory), Jericho (on the Adriatic coast between Dyrrachion and Nikopolis), and Edessa or Vodena (northwest of Thessaloníki) all appeared during the period from the later 9th to the 11th century.

Economy and society
      Like other regions of the Byzantine Empire, Greece had suffered economically from the warfare of the 7th and 8th centuries. The rise of the khanate of the Bulgars (Bulgar), established south of the Danube after 681, whose rulers were able to exercise a hegemony over their politically fragmented Slavic neighbours, meant that warfare remained endemic and economic insecurity a factor of daily existence. Yet the restoration of Byzantine military and political power from the later 8th century onward and the growth of Byzantine cultural and religious influence throughout the Balkans during the 9th and 10th centuries created a context favourable to economic and demographic recovery throughout the empire, especially in the southern Balkan region. During the 11th and 12th centuries Greece experienced a powerful economic upswing, certainly more so than Anatolia. Cities such as Thessaloníki, Thebes, and Corinth became centres of flourishing local industries and of market exchange, rivaling the imperial capital in many respects. The silk industry that developed around Thebes was especially important. The evidence for greater wealth, and more especially greater disposable wealth in the hands of local elites, is found not only in documentary sources but also in a number of splendidly endowed churches, some still extant today. Many other towns, particularly those with a harbour or shelter for ships, became flourishing centres of trade and commerce and were sought-after locations for the trading posts of the Italian merchant republics after the 11th century.

Results of the Fourth Crusade (Crusades)
      The Fourth Crusade, called by Pope Innocent III to reconquer the Holy Land, was diverted to Constantinople. Following the crusaders' seizure and sack of the city in 1204, the European territories of the Byzantine Empire were divided up among the Western magnates. Whereas in Asia Minor Byzantine resistance was successful, so that two independent successor empires were established (those of Nicaea and Trebizond), most of Greece was quickly and effectively placed under Frankish (Western Christian) rule. The principality of Achaia (the Morea) and the duchy of the Archipelago were subject to the Latin emperor, the ruler of the Latin Empire (also referred to as Romania) set up in Constantinople in 1204 by the Latin (Western) Christians of the Fourth Crusade and claiming jurisdiction over the territories of the Byzantine state. A kingdom of Thessaloníki was established, to whose ruler the lords of Athens and Thebes owed fealty; while the county of Cephalonia (Cephallenia) (which, along with the islands of Ithaca and Zákinthos had in fact already been under Italian rule since 1194, in the person of Matteo Orsini) was nominally subject to Venice, although it was in fact autonomous and after 1214 recognized the prince of Achaia as overlord. Finally, the lord of Euboia (Negroponte) was subject to the authority of both Thessaloníki and Venice. Byzantine control remained in the form of the despotate of Epirus in the northwest, in the area around Monemvasia in the eastern Peloponnese, and in the mountain fastness of the Taïyetos in Achaia and Arcadia. In 1261, however, the Nicaean forces were able to recover Constantinople and put an end to the Latin Empire. The recovery of some of the territory held by Frankish rulers followed, although Monemvasia actually fell, for a while, to a Frankish force in 1248: by the end of the 13th century parts of central Greece were once again in Byzantine hands, and the Byzantine despotate of Morea controlled much of the central and southeastern Peloponnese; but the principality of Achaia remained an important Frankish power to its north.

      The history of Greece, as stated above, reflects very closely its geopolitical structure. This fact is particularly clear in the period following the Fourth Crusade, when the former Byzantine administrative divisions were organized into various petty states, each having its own local history and political evolution.

Despotate of Epirus (Epirus, despotate of)
      The so-called despotate of Epirus (ruled by a despotēs, or lord), which usually included Cephalonia, was established by Michael I Komnenos Doukas, who established effective control after 1204 over northwestern Greece and a considerable part of Thessaly. His brother and successor Theodore was able to retake Thessaloníki from the Latins in 1224, where he was crowned as emperor, thus challenging the emperors of Nicaea (Nicaea, empire of) who claimed legitimate imperial rule. But in 1242 the Nicaean ruler John III Vatatzes compelled Theodore's son and successor John to abandon the title of emperor, and by 1246 Thessaloníki was under Nicaean rule. In 1259 much of Epirus came under Nicaean control, but this was lost by 1264; thereafter Epirus continued to be ruled by independent despots (despotai) until 1318. Its sheltered geographic position, between the spine of the Pindus range and the Adriatic, facilitated a degree of political separatism and independence from Constantinople until the Ottoman conquest. The Byzantine emperors, however, always insisted on their rights to confer the title of despotēs, and for much of the 14th and 15th centuries they regarded the rulers of Epirus as rebels.

      From 1318 until 1337 Epirus was ruled by the Italian Orsini Family, and, after a short Greek recovery, it was taken by the Serbs in 1348. Ioánnina and Arta were its main political centres. From 1366 to 1384 Ioánnina was ruled by Thomas Komnenos Palaeologus, also known as Preljubovič, the son of the caesar Gregory Preljub, who had been Serbian governor of Thessaly under Stefan Uroš IV Dušan. He was able to assert Serbian control over northern Epirus and fought with the Albanian lords of Arta (Ghin Bua Spata and Peter Ljoša) in the south, eventually defeating them with Ottoman help. In 1382 his title of despotēs was confirmed by the Byzantine emperor at Constantinople. He was assassinated late in 1384, probably by members of the local nobility who objected to his rule. His widow, the Byzantine Maria Angelina Doukaina Palaiologina, married the Italian nobleman Esau Buondelmonti, who ruled as despotēs until about 1411. Thereafter the despotate came under the Italian house of Tocco, whose rulers were able to recover Arta from the Albanians. But in 1430 the Ottomans took Ioánnina, and Arta fell to them in 1449. Thenceforth Epirus was to be part of the Ottoman Empire. Cephalonia was taken in 1479, but Venice seized it in 1500.

Thessaly and surrounding regions
      The political history of the other regions of Greece during this period is no less complex. Thessaly was ruled in its eastern parts by the Franks after 1204, while the western regions were disputed by the rulers of Epirus and Nicaea. About 1267 John I Doukas established himself as independent ruler, with the Byzantine title sebastokrator, at Neopatras, but in expanding his control eastward he came into conflict with Michael VIII, whose attacks he repelled with the assistance of the dukes of Athens and Charles I of Anjou. Venetian support, the result of a favourable trading relationship (Thessaly exported agricultural produce), helped maintain Thessalian independence until the arrival in 1309 of the Catalan Grand Company. This band of Spanish mercenaries, who originally had been hired by Andronicus II (1282–1328) to fight the Seljuks in Anatolia, had turned against imperial authority and established themselves in the Gallipoli peninsula. From there they moved into Greece through Thrace and Macedonia, which they plundered, and from 1318 onward they occupied the southern districts of Thessaly. The northern regions remained independent until 1332 (under the ruler Stephen Gabrielopoulos), after which they were taken by John II Orsini of Epirus. In 1335 Thessaly was retaken by the Byzantine Empire, and from 1348 it acknowledged the overlordship of the Serbian ruler Stefan IV. After his death (1355) the self-styled emperor Symeon Uroš, despotēs of Epirus and Akarnania, was able to seize control of both Epirus and Thessaly and rule independently following the death of Nikephoros II of Epirus in 1358/59. He was succeeded by his son John, who adopted the monastic life in 1373. The caesar Alexios Angelos Philanthropenos took control, governing as a vassal of the Byzantine emperor John V; but in 1393 the conquest of Thessaly by Ottoman forces put an end to its independence.

      In the south, Greece was divided among a number of competing political units. After 1204 the dukes of Athens controlled much of central Greece, with their main base at Thebes. They had political interests to the north and in the Peloponnese. However, in 1311 the Catalan Grand Company established its power over the duchies of Athens and Thebes, turning out their Latin lords. Under the protection of the Aragonese king Frederick II (Frederick III (or II)) of Sicily (three sons of whom became dukes of Athens), they dominated the region until the Navarrese Company (an army of mercenaries originally hired by Luis of Evreux, brother of Charles II of Navarre [1349–87], to help assert his claim over Albania and then temporarily in the service of the Knights Hospitalers, a military-monastic order) took Thebes in 1378 or 1379. This weakened Catalan power and opened the way for the Florentine Acciajuoli, lords of Corinth, to take Athens in 1388. The latter then ruled all three regions until their defeat at the hands of the Ottomans in the 1450s.

      In the Peloponnese, the political rivalry between the Byzantines and the Frankish principality of Achaia dominated. The principality was at its most successful under its prince William II Villehardouin (1246–78), but in 1259 he had to cede a number of fortresses, including Mistra, Monemvasia, and Maina, to the Byzantines. Internecine squabbles weakened resistance to Byzantine pressure, especially from the 1370s onward, when Jacques de Baux hired the Navarrese (Navarra) Company to fight for his claim to the principality. Upon his death in 1383 the Navarrese exercised effective political control over the Frankish territories under the commanders of the company. The last Navarrese prince, Pierre de St. Superan, joined the Ottomans in 1401 to raid Byzantine possessions in the southern Peloponnese; he died in 1402. He was succeeded by his widow, Maria Zaccaria, representative of an important Genoese merchant and naval family. She passed the title to her nephew Centurione II Zaccaria, who, however, lost much territory to the Byzantine despotate of the Morea (Morea, Despotate of). In 1430 he married his daughter to the Byzantine despotēs Thomas Palaeologus, handing over his remaining lands as her dowry. From this time on, the Byzantine despotate of the Morea effectively controlled most of the Peloponnese. However, the Ottoman presence and the fall of Constantinople to Sultan Mehmed II in 1453 effectively ended this final period of Byzantine rule. The Morea resisted Ottoman conquest until 1460, when it was finally incorporated into the Ottoman Empire (a year earlier than the empire of Trebizond, which fell in 1461). All of Greece was by this time under Ottoman authority, with the exception of some of the islands, which retained a tenuous independence under Venetian or Genoese protection.

Serbian and Ottoman advances
      Byzantine power in the northern Greek regions was effectively destroyed by the expansion of the Serbian empire under Stefan Uroš IV (Stefan Dušan) Dušan (1331–55), the results of which included the loss of Epirus, Thessaly, and eastern Macedonia, as noted above. From the 1350s the Ottomans established themselves in Europe, taking the chief towns of Thrace in the 1360s and Thessaloníki in 1387. Apart from the despotate of the Morea, therefore, and certain of the Aegean isles, there remained in Greece no Byzantine imperial possessions by the beginning of the 15th century.

The islands
      A particularly complex picture is represented by the islands, which were a focus for the activities of the Seljuks and later the Ottomans, of the Venetians and Genoese, and of the Byzantines. Following the Fourth Crusade, much of the southern part of the Aegean came under Venetian authority; and, although Byzantine power was restored for a while in the late 13th century, Naxos remained the centre of the Latin duchy of the Archipelago, established in 1207 among the Cyclades by Marco Sanudo, a relative of the Venetian doge, with a body of freebooting merchants and nobles. Initially under the overlordship of the Latin emperor at Constantinople, the duchy later transferred its allegiance to Achaia (in 1261) and to Naples (in 1267), although Venice also claimed suzerainty. The Sanudo family was replaced in 1383 by the Lombard Crispi family, which retained its independence until 1566, when the duchy was conquered by the Ottomans (although ruled by an appointee of the sultan until 1579, when it was properly incorporated into the state).

      The remaining islands were held at different times by the Venetians, the Genoese, the Knights Hospitalers (Hospitallers), and, eventually, the Turks. Rhodes played a particular role in the history of the Hospitalers' opposition to the Ottomans. Until the early 13th century, the island had been in the hands of a succession of Italian adventurers, most of whom acknowledged the overlordship of the emperor at Nicaea. In 1308 the Hospitalers took control, having been based on Cyprus since 1291, the time of their expulsion from the Holy Land. Rhodes, however, fell finally in 1523, when the knights were permitted to remove to Malta. Of the northern Aegean islands, Lemnos remained Byzantine until 1453, before coming for a while under the rule of the Gattilusi of Lesbos (whose independence of the Ottomans finally ended in 1462). In 1460 it was awarded to Demetrios Palaeologus, formerly despotēs of the Morea, along with the island of Thasos (the latter having come under Ottoman domination in 1455). In 1479 it was occupied by Ottoman forces and formally incorporated into the Ottoman state. Other islands had equally checkered histories. Naxos and Chios fell only in 1566; complete Ottoman control was not achieved, indeed, until 1715, when Tenedos, which remained until that year under Venetian control, was taken.

      The real exception to the Ottoman success in the Aegean, however, was Crete. Separately administered until the 820s, when it was seized by Spanish Arabs, it was conquered in 961 by the general and later Byzantine emperor Nicephoros II Phocas. After 1204 it was handed over to Boniface of Monferrat, who proceeded to sell it to Venice. Although oppressive and unpopular, Venetian rule witnessed the evolution of a flourishing Italo-Hellenic literary and political culture. It lasted until 1669, when, after a long siege of Candia and the creation and collapse of a range of temporary alliances between Venice and various western powers on the one hand and the Ottomans and their supporters on the other, the island passed into Ottoman hands.

Economic and social developments
      In spite of the political instability after 1204, Greece seems to have experienced relative prosperity in the later Byzantine period. Population expansion accompanied an increase in production as marginal lands were brought under cultivation, and trade with major and minor Italian mercantile centres flourished. Although hostility at the level of state politics was endemic, social relations between the ruling elites of Byzantine- and Latin-dominated areas were not mutually exclusive. Intermarriage was not uncommon, and a certain modus vivendi appears to have evolved. This contrasted with the attitude of the peasantry and ordinary population, whose perceptions were shaped by the Orthodox church, an identity as either Greek or Byzantine (“Roman”), and by hostility to the Western church and its ways. The Ottoman conquest was not seen as necessarily worse than Latin domination; in many cases, it was certainly welcomed as less oppressive.

Population and languages
      One of the most vexing questions concerning the history of medieval Greece has been that of the extent to which the indigenous “Hellenic” population survived and brings with it the question whether this term can properly be used of anything other than a cultural (as opposed to ethnic or racial) identity. The archaeological data, certainly, can offer answers only in terms of cultural similarities and differences, so that the question, as it has been traditionally expressed, of a Hellenic ethnic survival, cannot be answered. The issue must be explored in the context of the influx of large numbers of Slavs (Slav) during the later 6th–8th centuries as well as the migration across Greece of nomadic or seminomadic pastoral groups such as the Vlachs from the 10th or 11th century and the Albanians from the 13th century. Although the evidence of place-names suggests some lasting Slavic influence in parts of Greece, the evidence is qualified by the fact that the process of re-Hellenization that occurred from the later 8th century seems to have eradicated many traces of Slavic presence. Evidence of tribal names found in both the Peloponnese and northern Greece suggests that there were probably extensive Slavic-speaking populations in many districts; and from the 10th century to the 15th century Slavic occupants of various parts of the Peloponnese appear in the sources as brigands or as fiercely independent warriors. Whereas the Slavs of the south appear to have adopted Greek, those of Macedonia and Thessaly retained their original dialects, becoming only partially Hellenophone in certain districts.

The Albanians
      The origins of the Albanians (Albanoi/Arvanitai in Greek) remain uncertain. They appear to be the descendants of the Illyrian populations who withdrew into the highlands of the central Dinaric chain. Their name may originate from the valley of the Arbanon (along the Shkumbi River) in the theme of Dyrrachion (Durrës/Durazzo), in which they were first noted by outside commentators. Their language probably evolved from ancient Illyrian (formerly classed with the Hellenic group of Indo-European languages but now generally recognized as an independent member of the latter family), but it is heavily influenced by Greek, Slavic, and Turkish, as well as medieval Italian. For reasons not yet fully understood, the Albanians began in the 14th century to advance into the western coastal plain, where they served both Byzantine and Serbian overlords as well as ruling independently under various warlords and chiefly families; they were also present in considerable numbers in Thessaly, Boeotia, Attica, and the Peloponnese, serving as soldiers and as farmers, colonizing deserted lands. Albanians arrived in large numbers in the Peloponnese during the reign of the despotēs Manuel Kantakouzenos, who brought them there to serve as soldiers and to resettle depopulated regions. The impact of their presence on the region's existing ethnic and linguistic structure remains debated.

The Vlachs (Vlach)
      In central and southern Thessaly, the Vlachs played an important role. They have generally been identified with the indigenous, pre-Slav populations of Dacian and Thracian origin, many of whom migrated into the less-accessible mountainous areas of Greece and the northern Balkan region because of the Germanic and Avar-Slav invasions and immigration of the 5th–7th centuries. The Vlachs maintained a transhumant, pastoral economy in those areas. Their language belongs to the so-called Macedo-Romanian group and is closely related to that known from the 13th century on as Romanian (Daco-Romanian); it is essentially rooted in the late Latin, heavily influenced by the Slavic dialects with which the Daco-Thracian populations were in regular contact. By the 11th century the Vlachs are described as communities of shepherds who moved with their flocks between their winter pastures in Thessaly and summer pastures of the Gramoz Mountain and Pindus range; they are found in Byzantine armies and are mentioned in many documents dealing with landholdings in northern Greece, where—as is often the case in relations between settled and nomadic populations—they were regarded as troublemakers and thieves. Byzantines were often imprecise in their use of ethnic names; the Vlachs seem frequently to have been confused with the Bulgarians, through whose territory they also wandered on their seasonal routes and pasturage. A major modern debate about the role of the Vlachs in the establishment of the Second Bulgarian empire after 1185 continues, strongly marked by nationalist sentiment.

Emerging Greek identity
      As the Byzantine Empire declined, the predominant role of Greek culture, literature, and language became ever more apparent. For Christians of the early and middle Byzantine worlds, the terms Hellene and Hellenic generally (although not exclusively, since in certain literary contexts a classicizing style permitted a somewhat different usage) had a pejorative connotation, signifying pagan and non-Christian rather than “Greek.” From the 12th century, however, in the context of increasing conflict with Western European culture on the one hand and the encroaching Turkish powers on the other, this situation changed. With the territorial reduction of the empire to strictly Greek-speaking areas, the multiethnic tradition gave way to a more self-consciously “national” Greek consciousness, and a greater interest in “Hellenic” culture in a positive sense evolved. Byzantines began to refer to themselves not just as Rhomaioi, the traditional term, but as Hellenes. Notions of nationhood developed, and among learned circles a deep interest in the classical past was cultivated. While there was a powerful secularist tradition in this, culminating in the ideas of the neoplatonic Byzantine philosopher George Gemistus Plethon (Gemistus Plethon, George) (who argued for the implementation of the political-philosophical system outlined in Plato's Republic), it was the combination of popular Orthodoxy (and strongly anti-Western ecclesiastical sentiment) with a specifically Greek identity that shaped the Byzantines' notions of themselves in the twilight years of the empire. With the political extinction of the empire, it was the Greek Orthodox church and the Greek-language community, in both “Greece” and Asia Minor that continued to cultivate this identity as well as the ideology of a Byzantine imperial heritage rooted in both the Roman and the classical Greek past.

John Frederick Haldon

Greece under Ottoman (Ottoman Empire) rule
      Constantinople fell to the Ottoman Turks on May 29, 1453. The Byzantine emperor, Constantine XI Palaeologus, was last seen fighting alongside his troops on the battlements; his death gave rise to the widely disseminated legend that the emperor had turned to marble but that one day he would return to liberate his people. By 1453 the Byzantine Empire was but a pathetic shadow of its former glories. The fall of this symbolic bastion of Christendom in the struggle against Islām may have sent shock waves through Western Christendom, but the conquest was accepted with resignation by many of the inhabitants of the city; as they saw it, their plight was a consequence of the sinfulness of the Byzantine Empire. Moreover, for many people Ottoman rule, and the maintenance of the integrity of the Orthodox faith, was preferable to accepting the pretensions of the papacy, the price Western Christendom had sought to exact in return for military assistance to ward off the Turkish threat. What was more, it was widely believed that the end of the world would come in 1492.

The millet system
      With the conquest of the territories that had constituted the Byzantine Empire, the Ottoman sultans were faced with the problem of governing large non-Muslim populations. Christians and Jews, as “People of the Book,” were afforded a considerable degree of toleration. Indeed, it was to the Ottoman Empire rather than Christian Europe that many Spanish Jews migrated following their expulsion from Spain in 1492. The Ottomans confronted the problem of the governance of these large heterodox and polyglot populations by establishing millets. These were organized on the basis of religious confession rather than ethnic origin, of which, in any case, in the early centuries of Ottoman rule there was little consciousness. The ruling millet within the empire was made up of the Muslims. Next in importance was the Orthodox Christian millet-i Rūm, or “Greek” millet, as it was known. There was also an Armenian, a Jewish, a Roman Catholic, and even, in the 19th century, a Protestant millet. Although its head, the ecumenical patriarch, was invariably of Greek origin, the term “Greek” millet was something of a misnomer, for it included, besides the Greeks, Romanians, Bulgarians, Serbs, Albanians, Vlachs, and substantial Arab populations. With the rise of nationalism in the 18th and 19th centuries the non-Greek members of the “Greek” millet came increasingly to chafe at the Greek stranglehold on the higher reaches of the hierarchy of the Orthodox church, through which the millet was administered.

      The powers of the ecumenical patriarch were indeed extensive, although there is uncertainty as to the precise nature of the privileges granted by Sultan Mehmed II to the man whom he elevated to the highest office in the church. This was Gennadios II Scholarios, a known opponent of those who, in the last years of the Byzantine Empire, had advocated union with the Western church. Patriarchal authority was considerable and extended to civil as well as to strictly religious matters. In many respects, indeed, it was greater than that enjoyed by the patriarchs in Byzantine times. The privilege of a considerable degree of autonomy in directing the affairs of the millet carried with it the responsibility of ensuring that its members were unshaken in their loyalty to the Ottoman Porte, or government. If disloyalty manifested itself, then retribution was swift and harsh, as occurred at the time of the outbreak of the War of Greek Independence (Greek Independence, War of) in 1821 when the patriarch Grigorios V was executed in reprisal, despite the fact that he had vigorously condemned the insurgents. In the West this was seen as an act of mindless barbarity. In the eyes of the Ottomans, however, Grigorios had signally failed to carry out his fundamental obligation, that of ensuring that the Orthodox flock remained loyal subjects of the sultan.

Disadvantages for non-Muslims
      In keeping with Islāmic tradition, members of the Greek millet enjoyed a considerable degree of autonomy in conducting their religious affairs. They were nonetheless at a disadvantage in a number of ways in comparison with members of the ruling Muslim millet. A Christian was not allowed to bear arms and was disbarred from military service (although this latter disability was in many ways a privilege), in lieu of which he had to pay a special tax, the haradj. In a court of law, a Muslim's word was always accepted over that of a Christian, although disputes between Christians were generally settled in courts under the control of the millet. A Christian could not marry a Muslim woman, and there was a strict prohibition against apostasy from Islām. Indeed, Christians who had embraced Islām and then reverted to Christianity, were, until well into the 19th century, invariably punished by death. These “neomartyrs,” however, helped sustain the faith of the Orthodox populations during the centuries of Ottoman rule.

      The most serious disability to which Christians were subject, until the practice died out toward the end of the 17th century, was the Janissary levy (paidomazoma). Christian families in the Balkans were required, at irregular intervals, to deliver to the Ottoman authorities a given proportion of their most intelligent and handsome male children to serve, after being forcibly converted to Islām, as elite troops or civil servants. Inevitably the levy was much feared, but those conscripted frequently rose to high office and were sometimes able to help relatives or their native villages. Indeed, there is evidence of Muslim families seeking to pass their children off as Christian in the hope that they would be included in the levy and would thus be able to better their prospects. Under such pressures there were numerous instances of Christian conversion to Islām on both an individual and a mass basis, such conversions being particularly prevalent in the 17th century. Not infrequently, however, the conversions were only nominal, and these crypto-Christians secretly practiced the rituals of their former faith.

Resistance to Ottoman rule
      During much of the four centuries of the “Tourkokratia,” as the period of Ottoman rule in Greece is known, there was little hope that the Greeks would be able to free themselves by their own efforts, although there were sporadic revolts, such as occurred on the mainland and in the islands of the Aegean in the aftermath of the defeat inflicted on the Ottoman navy in 1571 by Don John of Austria; the short-lived revolt launched by Dionysius Skylosophos in Epirus in 1611; and the abortive uprising in the Peloponnese in 1770 at the time of the Russo-Turkish war of 1768–74. These uprisings had little chance of success, but throughout the centuries of the Tourkokratia there was a kind of armed resistance to the Turks in the form of the klephts (literally robbers). In their banditry the klephts did not distinguish between Greek and Turk, but their attacks on such manifest symbols of Ottoman authority as tax collectors led to their being seen as acting on behalf of the Greeks against Ottoman oppressors. Certainly they are viewed in this light in the corpus of klephtic ballads that emerged, extolling the bravery and military prowess of the klephts and their heroic resistance to the Ottomans.

      In an effort to counter the depredations of the klephts and to control the mountain passes that were their favoured area of operation, the Ottomans established a militia of armatoloi (armatole). Like the klephts, these were Christians, and the distinction between klepht and armatolos tended to be a narrow one. Moreover, the existence of such armed formations meant that, when the Greek revolt broke out in 1821, there was an invaluable reserve of military talent.

Belief in divine intervention
      Greek aspirations for freedom were largely sustained by a corpus of prophetic and messianic beliefs that foretold the eventual overthrow of the Turkish yoke as the result of divine rather than human intervention. Such were the oracles attributed to the Byzantine emperor Leo VI the Wise (886–912), which foretold the liberation of Constantinople 320 years after its fall—i.e., in 1773. Particular credence was placed in this prophecy, for its fulfillment coincided with the great Russo-Turkish war (Russo-Turkish wars) of 1768–74, one of the periodic confrontations between the two great regional powers. The Russians were the only Orthodox power not under foreign domination, and they were widely identified with the legendary “xanthon genos,” a fair-haired race of future liberators from the north. The Russians were seen as forming part of a commonwealth linking the various parts of the Orthodox Christian world, with its common centres of pilgrimage such as the monastic republic of Mount Athos (forming one of the three fingers of the Chalcidice Peninsula) and Jerusalem.

The role of the Orthodox church (Eastern Orthodoxy)
      The Orthodox church was the only institution to which the Greeks could look as a focus. Through the use of Greek in the liturgy and through its modest educational efforts, the church helped to a degree to keep alive a sense of Greek identity, but it could not prevent Turkish (Turkish language) (which was written with Greek characters) from becoming the vernacular of a substantial proportion of the Greek population of Asia Minor and, indeed, of the Ottoman capital itself.

      The Orthodox church, however, fell victim to the institutionalized corruption of the Ottoman system of government. The combining of civil with religious power in the hands of the ecumenical patriarchate and the upper reaches of the hierarchy prompted furious competition for high office. This was encouraged by the Ottomans, for it was soon the norm for a huge peshkesh, or bribe, to be paid to the grand vizier, the sultan's chief minister, on each occasion that a new patriarch was installed. Thus, despite the fact that, in theory, a patriarch was elected for life, there was a high turnover in office. Some even held the office more than once. Grigorios was executed by the Ottomans in 1821 during his third patriarchate, while during the second half of the 17th century Dionysius IV Mouselimis was elected patriarch no fewer than five times. It was this kind of behaviour that prompted an 18th-century Armenian chronicler to taunt the Greeks that they changed their patriarch more frequently than they changed their shirt.

      Bribes had to be paid to secure office at all levels, and these could be recouped only through the imposts placed on the Orthodox faithful as a whole. The clergy's reputation for rapacity led to the growth of anticlericalism at a popular level and, in particular, among the small nationalist intelligentsia that emerged in the course of the 18th century. The anonymous author of that fiery nationalist polemic the “Ellinikhi Nomarkhia” (“Hellenic Nomarchy”; 1806) was a bitter critic of the sloth and self-indulgence of the higher clergy, while Adamántios Koraïs (Koraïs, Adamántios) (1748–1833), the intellectual mentor of the national revival, though careful to steer between what he termed the Scylla of superstition and the Charybdis of atheism, was highly censorious of the obscurantism of the clergy. What particularly incensed Koraïs and his ilk was the willingness with which the Orthodox hierarchy identified its interests with those of the Ottoman authorities. However, the views of men such as Anthimos, the patriarch of Jerusalem, who argued in 1798 that the Ottoman Empire was part of the divine dispensation granted by God to protect Orthodoxy from the taint of Roman Catholicism and of Western secularism and irreligion, were by no means unusual.

Transformation toward emancipation

Signs of Ottoman decline
      During the 16th and 17th centuries the main preoccupation of the Greeks was with mere survival. In the course of the 18th century, however, a number of changes occurred both in the international situation and in Greek society itself that cumulatively gave rise to hopes that the Greeks might themselves launch a revolt against Ottoman authority with some promise of success. By the end of the 17th century the protracted process of Ottoman decline was clearly under way. The failure of the great siege of Vienna in 1683 signaled the beginning of a slow process of retreat in the European provinces of the empire. The military triumphs of earlier centuries gave way to pressure on the empire from the Austrians, the Russians, and the Persians. The Russian threat reached its apogee in the 1768–74 war with Turkey. The Russians were subsequently to claim the right to exercise a protectorate over all the Orthodox Christians of the Ottoman Empire on the basis of an optimistic reading of the terms of the peace settlement with the Ottoman Empire by the Treaty of Küçük Kaynarca (Küçük Kaynarca, Treaty of).

      As the empire lost territory as it was forced onto the defensive, so the control of the Ottoman Porte over its still enormous provinces weakened. In both European and Asiatic Turkey, provincial warlords usurped the authority of the sultan, and the example of successful defiance of the Porte afforded by powerful satraps such as Ali Paşa Tepelenë, the Muslim Albanian who ruled over a large swathe of mainland Greece, gave encouragement to Greek nationalists, for it demonstrated that the empire was no longer the invincible monolith it once had been.

The Phanariotes (Phanariote)
      Of critical importance to the ultimate success of the national movement was the profound transformation that Greek society was to undergo during the course of the 18th century. Significant among these developments was the rise to power and influence of the Phanariotes, a small caste of Greek (and Hellenized Romanian and Albanian) families who took their collective name from the Phanar, or Lighthouse, quarter of Constantinople, the home of the ecumenical patriarchate. The roots of their ascendancy can be traced to the need of the Ottomans for skilled negotiators as the power of their empire declined. No longer in a position to dictate peace terms to their vanquished enemies, they now had to rely on diplomats skilled in negotiation who might mitigate the consequences of military defeat, and these were drawn from the Phanariotes. Between 1699, when the peace treaty with the Habsburg monarchy was signed at Carlowitz, and 1821, the year of the outbreak of the War of Greek Independence, Phanariote grandees monopolized the post of chief interpreter to the Porte (Sublime Porte). This was a more important post than it appeared, for its holder bore considerable responsibility for the conduct of foreign policy. Similarly, Phanariotes were invariably interpreters to the kapudan pasha, the admiral of the Ottoman fleet. Again their powers were wider than the title suggests, for these Phanariotes in effect acted as governors of the islands of the Aegean archipelago, whose Greek inhabitants were a principal source of the sailors manning the Ottoman fleet.

      The most important posts held by Phanariotes were those of hospodar, or prince, of the Danubian principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia. Phanariotes ruled these potentially rich provinces as the viceroys of the sultans, and their sumptuous courts in Jassy (now Iaşi, Rom.) and Bucharest aped on a lesser scale the splendour of the imperial court in Constantinople. Just as there was furious, and corrupt, jockeying for high office in the Orthodox church, so the appointment of the hospodars was accompanied by intrigue and corruption. Just as there was a high turnover in office of the ecumenical patriarch, so the average tenure in office of a Phanariote hospodar was less than three years. Because they needed to recoup their expenditures on bribes, hospodars acquired a not wholly justified reputation for greed and oppression. Some hospodars displayed an enlightened interest in legal and land reform. Most acted as patrons of Greek culture, education, and printing. The princely academies attracted teachers and pupils from throughout the Orthodox commonwealth, and there was some contact with intellectual trends in Habsburg central Europe. For the most part the Phanariotes were too closely wedded to the Ottoman system of government, of which they were major beneficiaries, to play a significant part in the emergence of the Greek national movement. Nonetheless, however much their interests coincided with the maintenance of the Ottoman status quo, they provided a pool of individuals with experience in diplomacy and politics when armed struggle erupted in 1821.

The mercantile middle class
      The single most important development in the Greek world during the 18th century was the emergence of an entrepreneurial, prosperous, and far-flung mercantile middle class, which played a major role in the economic life of the Ottoman Empire but which was also active outside its bounds. Discouraged from investing their capital within the empire by the arbitrariness and rapacity of the state, these Greek merchants played an active role in developing commerce in Hungary and Transylvania, newly acquired by the Habsburg monarchy, and also in southern Russia, where they were encouraged to settle by the empress Catherine the Great after Russia's borders had reached the Black Sea. Greek became the basic language of Balkan commerce as these merchants challenged the existing hold of British, French, and Dutch merchants on the import-export trade of the empire, importing Western manufactured goods and colonial produce and exporting raw materials. Greek merchant communities, or paroikies, each with their own church, were established through much of central Europe, the Mediterranean littoral, and southern Russia, and even as far afield as India.

      Paralleling this development, a substantial merchant marine, based on the three “nautical” islands of Hydra, Spetsai, and Psará, came into existence. This merchant marine prospered from running the continental blockade imposed by Great Britain during the period of the French revolutionary and Napoleonic wars. The existence of a reservoir of trained sailors was to prove of inestimable advantage once the war of independence had broken out, when Greek fire ships became a formidable weapon against the cumbersome ships of the line of the Ottoman fleet.

      The emergence of a mercantile middle class had a number of important consequences. Greeks were brought into contact with the ordered societies of western Europe, in which the state gave encouragement to commerce. They compared this state of affairs with that prevailing in the Ottoman Empire, where the absence of the rule of law and general arbitrariness militated against the generation of capital and still more its retention. Most of the merchants were, like the Phanariotes, too wedded to the status quo to give active encouragement to the national movement and thus potentially threaten their newfound prosperity. However, indirectly at least, they made a major contribution to the emerging national movement. For it was their wealth that provided the material basis for the intellectual revival that was such a significant feature of the last three decades of the 18th century and first two of the 19th. Impelled by the sense of local patriotism that had always been strong in the Greek world, they endowed schools and libraries. It was no accident that the three most important schools-cum-colleges in the Greek world on the eve of the war of independence were situated in Smyrna, Khíos, and Ayvalik (on the coast of Asia Minor opposite the island of Lesbós), all three major centres of Greek commerce.

The intellectual revival
      A significant number of schoolteachers studied, with the financial backing of their merchant benefactors, in the universities of western Europe, particularly those of Italy and the German states. There they came under the influence of the ideas of the European Enlightenment and encountered the intoxicating nationalist doctrines emanating from the French Revolution. Above all, they became aware of the reverence in which the language and culture of ancient Greece (ancient Greek civilization) were held throughout Europe. This realization kindled in them a consciousness of their own past, a recognition of being the heirs to this same civilization and of speaking a language that had changed remarkably little in the two and a half millennia since the time of Pericles. During the 50 years or so before 1821 a veritable flood of books on the language, literature, and history of the ancient Greek world was published (albeit for the most part outside the Greek domains) for a Greek readership.

      A leading role in the rediscovery of the past was played by Adamántios Koraïs (Koraïs, Adamántios). A native of Smyrna, where he was born in 1748, Koraïs sought, unsuccessfully, to establish himself as a merchant in Amsterdam. After studying medicine at the University of Montpellier, he moved to Paris in 1788, where he soon experienced the French Revolution firsthand. The main interest of his life, however, was classical philology, of which he became one of the foremost scholars in the Europe of his day. He devoted his years in Paris (until his death in 1833) to the study of this subject as well as to inspiring in his compatriots an appreciation of their classical ancestry. With the help of a family of rich merchants of Jannina (Ioánnina) he published a whole series of editions of classical authors, which he prefaced with exhortations to his compatriots to cast off their Byzantine ignorance by reviving the glories of the ancient world and by imitating the French, the people of modern Europe who, in his estimation, most resembled his classical forebears. His panacea for the degraded condition of the Greeks was education; it would enable them to free themselves from the double yoke of the Ottoman Turks and the Orthodox church.

      One consequence of what could be described as an obsession with antiquity on the part of the small nationalist intelligentsia was the practice of naming children (and ships) after the worthies of ancient Greece, a custom dating from the first decade of the 19th century. Another was the vigorous debate that got under way, and which has lasted until the present day, as to the form of the language that was appropriate to a regenerated Greece. Some advocated using the spoken language, the demotic, as the language of educated discourse. Others favoured the Katharevousa, or purified Greek, which would render it more akin to the supposed purity of Attic Greek. Still others, such as Koraïs, advocated a middle path.

      The intellectual revival of the half century or so before 1821 was real enough. However, much of it took place in the Greek communities of the diaspora, and the nationalist enthusiasms of the intelligentsia left the great mass of the peasantry, most of whom were illiterate, largely unmoved. Moreover, the elites of preindependent Greek society, the higher clerics, the wealthy merchants, the Phanariotes, and the kodjabashis, the wealthy provincial notables, whose lifestyle sometimes led to their being derisively referred to as “Christian Turks,” were for the most part supporters of the status quo under the Ottomans. Whatever the faith pinned by Koraïs on education, cultural revival by itself was not going to remove the incubus of the Turks.

From insurgence to independence

Rigas Velestinlis
      Toward the end of the 18th century Rigas Velestinlis (also known as Rigas Pheraios), a Hellenized Vlach from Thessaly, began not only to dream of, but actively to plan for, an armed revolt against the Turks. Rigas, who had served a number of Phanariote hospodars in the Danubian principalities, spent part of the 1790s in Vienna. There he had come under the influence of the French Revolution, as is manifest in a number of revolutionary tracts he had printed, intending to distribute them in an effort to stimulate a Pan-Balkan uprising against the Ottomans. These tracts included a “Declaration of the Rights of Man” and a “New Political Constitution of the Inhabitants of Rumeli, Asia Minor, the Islands of the Aegean, and the principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia.” The latter proposed the establishment of what, in essence, would have been a revived Byzantine Empire, but an empire in which monarchical institutions would have been replaced by republican institutions on the French model. Rigas' insistence on the cultural predominance of the Greeks, however, and on the use of the Greek language, meant that his schemes had little potential interest for the other peoples of the Balkan Peninsula. In any case, Rigas' ambitious schemes came to naught. Before he had even set foot on Ottoman soil, he was betrayed by a fellow Greek to the Habsburg authorities, who promptly handed him and a small group of coconspirators over to the Ottoman authorities; he was strangled by them in Belgrade in the summer of 1798. At one level Rigas' conspiracy had thus been a miserable failure, but his almost single-handed crusade served as an inspiration to subsequent generations of Greek nationalists.

Western encroachments
      The arrest of Rigas thoroughly alarmed both the Ottoman authorities and the hierarchy of the Orthodox church, for it almost coincided with the occupation of the Ionian Islands in 1797 by the forces of revolutionary France and with Bonaparte's invasion of Egypt in 1798. These developments occasioned panic in Constantinople, for they seemed to indicate that the seditious and atheistic doctrines of the French Revolution had arrived at the very borders of the empire. The brief period of French rule in the Ionian Islands, attended as it was by the rhetoric of revolutionary liberation, soon gave way to a short-lived Russo-Turkish condominium, a further period of French rule, and finally, after 1815, the establishment of a British protectorate. Although governed like a colony, the Ionian Islands under British rule in theory constituted an independent state and thus afforded an example of free Greek soil, adjacent to but not under the control of the Ottoman Empire.

      The example of Rigas Velestinlis was very much in the minds of the three young Greeks, lowly members of the Greek mercantile diaspora, who in 1814 in Odessa in southern Russia, the centre of a thriving Greek community, founded the Philikí Etaireía, or “Friendly Society,” with the specific aim of laying the foundations for a coordinated, armed uprising against the Turks. The three founders, Emmanuil Xanthos, Nicholas Skouphas, and Athanasios Tsakalov, had little vision of the shape of the independent Greece for which they aimed beyond the liberation of the motherland.

      The initiation rituals of the Philikí Etaireía were strongly influenced by those of the Freemasons. There were four categories of membership, ranging from the lowly vlamis (brother) to the poimin (shepherd). Those who betrayed the conspiracy were ruthlessly dispatched. Initially the society's attempt to recruit members throughout the Greek world met with little success, but from 1818 onward it made some headway, finding the communities of the diaspora an important source of recruits. From the outset the leadership of the society, well aware that the overwhelming majority of the Greek people looked upon their fellow Orthodox, the Russians, as their most likely liberators, put it about, quite misleadingly, that the conspiracy enjoyed the support of the Russian authorities.

      In this connection, two attempts were made to recruit as leader of the conspiracy Count Ioánnis Kapodístrias (Kapodístrias, Ioánnis Antónios, Count), a Greek from Corfu, who, since 1816, had served as joint foreign minister to Tsar Alexander I of Russia and who was well versed in the ways of European diplomacy. The conservative Kapodístrias, however, was dismissive of the plot and urged the Greeks to bide their time until there was yet another of the regular wars between the Russian and Ottoman empires, when they might hope to achieve the kind of quasi-autonomy enjoyed by Serbia since 1813. Although he could see no future in the plans of the members of the Philikí Etaireía, Kapodístrias did not betray the secret of the conspiracy. It was to another Greek in the Russian service, Prince Alexander Ypsilantis, a Phanariote who held the position of aide-de-camp to Alexander but who lacked the political experience of Kapodístrias, that the leadership was offered.

      Like Rigas Velestinlis, the conspirators were hoping for the support of the Romanians and Bulgarians, but there was little enthusiasm for the project on the part of the other Balkan peoples, who were inclined to view the Greeks, with their privileged position in the Ottoman Empire and their enthusiasm for the ecclesiastical and cultural Hellenization of the other Balkan Christians, as scarcely less oppressive than the Turks.

      Although unable to rely on the other Balkan peoples, the leadership of the conspiracy succeeded in exploiting the internal problems of the Ottoman Empire to its advantage. Sultan Mahmud II, who had ascended the throne in 1808, was bent on restoring the authority of the central government. To this end, in the winter of 1820, he launched an attack against Ali Paşa Tepelenë, a provincial warlord who, from his capital in Jannina, exercised control over large areas of mainland Greece. Although he nominally paid allegiance to the sultan, his virtual independence had for many years made him a thorn in the flesh of the Ottoman authorities. Taking advantage of the fact that large numbers of Ottoman troops were tied up in the campaign against Ali Paşa, Alexander Ypsilantis launched an attack from Russian territory across the Pruth River in March 1821, invoking the glories of ancient Greece in his call to arms from the Moldavian capital, Jassy. However, his campaign met with little success. He encountered no enthusiasm on the part of the supporters of Tudor Vladimirescu, who had risen against the oppression of the local Romanian boyars, or notables. Memories of Phanariote Greek oppression were altogether too vivid and recent. In June of 1821 Ypsilantis and his motley army were defeated at the battle of Dragatsani (Drăgăşani, Battle of), and Ypsilantis was forced ignominiously to flee into Habsburg territory, where he died in captivity in 1828.

Revolt in the Peloponnese
      Shortly after Ypsilantis' incursion into Moldavia, scattered violent incidents coalesced into a major revolt in the Peloponnese. With atrocities being committed by both sides, the Turks, very much in a minority, were forced to retreat to their coastal fortresses. The diversion of Ottoman forces for the attack on Ali Paşa, the element of surprise, and the military and naval skills on which the Greeks could draw, gave the Greeks an advantage in the early years of what proved a lengthy struggle.

      The revolt caught the public imagination in western Europe, even if in the early years the reactionary governments of post-Napoleonic Europe were not prepared to countenance any disturbance of the existing order. Public sympathy in western Europe, however, was translated into more concrete expressions of support with the arrival in the Peloponnese of philhellene volunteers, the best-known of whom was the poet Lord Byron, who had traveled extensively in the Greek lands before 1821. The military contribution of the philhellenes was limited, and some became disillusioned when they discovered that Greek reality differed from the idealized vision of Periclean Athens in which they had been nurtured in their home countries. But, the philhellenic committees that sprang up in Europe and the United States raised money for the prosecution of the war and the succour of its victims, such as the survivors of the great massacre on Chios in 1822, immortalized by the French painter Eugène Delacroix.

Factionalism in the emerging state
      At a very early stage in the fighting the question of the governance of the liberated territories arose. Initially no fewer than three provisional governments concurrently came into existence, while in 1822 a constitution, which by the standards of the day was highly democratic, was adopted with more than half an eye to securing the support of enlightened public opinion in Europe. A revised constitution was adopted in 1823, at which time the three local governments were unified in a central authority. However, unification did not bring unity. Feuding between rival groups culminated in outright civil war in 1824, prompting one chieftain, Makriyannis, to protest that he had not taken up arms against the Turks in order to end up fighting Greeks.

      Such factionalism derived from a number of causes. There was a basic tension between the kodjabashis, or notables, of the Peloponnese, who were anxious to ensure that they retained the privileged status they had held under the Ottomans, and the military element, associated with such klephtic leaders as Theodoros Kolokotronis (Kolokotrónis, Theódoros), who sought recognition in terms of political power for their contribution to the war effort. The island shipowners, whose contribution to the prosecution of the war at sea was vital, likewise laid claim to a share of power, while the small intelligentsia argued for the adoption of liberal parliamentary institutions. To some degree the clash can be seen as a confrontation between Westernizers and traditional elites, to some degree as a clash between the military and civilian parties. The Westernizers, who were consciously nationalist and whose attitudes were expressed by their adoption of a Western lifestyle and Western clothing, wanted independent Greece to develop along the lines of a European state, with a regular army and with a curb on the traditional powers of the church. The traditional elites, on the other hand, tended to see the struggle in terms of a religious crusade against the Muslims, and their national consciousness was less fully articulated. Anxious to maintain the power and privileges they had enjoyed before the struggle began, they were chiefly concerned with substituting the oligarchy of the Turks with their own.

      The insurgents could ill afford internecine fighting. Mahmud II had by this time forged an alliance with his nominal subject, Muḥammad ʿAlī, the ruler of Egypt, and his son Ibrahim Pasha, who were promised lavish territorial rewards in return for their assistance in suppressing the revolt. From early 1825 Ibrahim Pasha engaged in a bitter war with the insurgents. As their initially favourable military position deteriorated, the insurgents looked increasingly for salvation to the Great Powers, which, from a combination of mutual suspicion as to each other's objectives and concern at the damage being done to their commercial interests, gradually moved toward a more interventionist position.

      In 1826, by the Protocol of St. Petersburg, Britain and Russia committed themselves to a policy of mediation, to which France became a party through the Treaty of London of 1827. A policy of “peaceful interference,” as the British prime minister Lord Canning (Canning, George) described it, culminated in the not wholly planned destruction of the Turco-Egyptian fleet by a combined British, French, and Russian fleet at the Battle of Navarino (Navarino, Battle of) in October 1827, the last great naval battle of the age of sail. This intervention by the Great Powers was instrumental in ensuring that some form of independent Greece came into existence, although its precise borders, which ran from Arta in the west to Volos in the east, took some years to negotiate. This process was overseen by Count Ioánnis Kapodístrias (Kapodístrias, Ioánnis Antónios, Count), who was elected the first president of Greece by the Assembly of Troezene, which in 1827 enacted the third constitution of the independence period. Besides overseeing the negotiation of the boundaries of the new state, in which his extensive diplomatic experience in the Russian imperial service was employed to the full, Kapodístrias was also fully engaged in trying to create the infrastructure of a state in a country that had been ravaged by a vicious and destructive war. Schooled as he was in the traditions of Russian autocracy, Kapodístrias chafed under the provisions of the 1827 constitution, which, like its predecessors, was a remarkably liberal document, and he abrogated it. His paternalist and authoritarian style of government offended a number of key elements in the power structure of the embryonic Greek state. Growing unrest culminated in his assassination in Nauplia, the provisional capital, in October 1831.

Building the nation, 1832–1913
      Greece's existence as an independent state gained formal recognition in the treaty of 1832 between Bavaria and the Great, or “Protecting,” Powers. Significantly, the Greeks themselves were not party to the treaty. Greece now, formally at least, became a sovereign state, and the Greeks were thus the first of the subject peoples of the Ottoman Empire to gain full independence. But the state contained within its borders scarcely one-third of the Greek populations of the Middle East, and the struggle to expand the nation's borders was to dominate the first century of independent statehood. Only in 1947, with the incorporation of the Dodecanese Islands (a group of islands off the southwestern coast of Turkey hitherto under Italian rule), were Greece's present borders established.

      Moreover, the sovereignty of the small Greek state was not absolute. The Protecting Powers had determined that Greece should be a monarchy, and they retained certain ill-defined rights of intervention.

Greece under Otto of Wittelsbach
      The Great Powers had chosen Otto of Wittelsbach, the 17-year-old son of King Louis I (Ludwig) of Bavaria, as king of Greece. Because Otto was still a minor, the Great Powers determined that until he came of age the country was to be ruled by three Bavarian regents, while the army was to be composed of Bavarians. The period of the “Bavarokratia,” as the regency was termed, was not a happy one, for the regents showed little sensitivity to the mores of Otto's adopted countrymen and imported European models wholesale without regard to local conditions. Thus the legal and educational systems were heavily influenced by German and French models, as was the church settlement of 1833, which ended the traditional authority of the ecumenical patriarch and subjected ecclesiastical affairs to civil control.

      Even after the formal ending of the regency in 1835, the Bavarian presence remained strong and was increasingly resented by those who had fought for independence and who now felt cheated of the fruits of victory. A further source of frustration for some was Otto's failure to grant a constitution, as had been provided for in the negotiations preceding independence. Despite the absence of a constitution, however, political parties of a kind came into existence; the “British,” “Russian,” and “French” parties were associated, as their names suggest, with the diplomatic representatives of the Great Powers, and their main appeal was strong personalities rather than well defined ideologies.

      Toward the end of the decade of the 1830s there was growing discontent with Otto's rule. There was no sign of his conceding a constitution; Bavarians were still influential; his marriage to Queen Amalia had not produced an heir; the king remained a Roman Catholic in an Orthodox country with a strong anti-Catholic tradition; and much of the country's revenues were being expended in servicing the loan granted on independence by the Protecting Powers.

      These various strands of discontent coalesced in the military coup of September 1843. Virtually bloodless, but on this occasion manifestly reflecting the popular will, the coup was the first of many military interventions in the political process. Otto was forced to grant a constitution (promulgated in 1844), which was a liberal document by the standards of the day, providing for virtually universal manhood suffrage (although women were barred from voting until as late as 1952). However, Otto, in concert with his wily prime minister, Ioannis Kolettis, was able to subvert the spirit of the new constitution by establishing a kind of parliamentary dictatorship. Moreover, the attempt to graft a liberal constitutional democracy onto an essentially premodern, traditional society that had evolved in quite a different fashion from those of western Europe gave rise to tensions both within the political system and in the relations between state and society which have continued until modern times. Rouspheti (the reciprocal dispensation of favours), patronage, manipulation, and, at times, outright force continued to characterize the politics of the postconstitutional period.

The Great Idea
      It was during the debates that preceded the promulgation of the 1844 constitution that Kolettis first coined the expression the “Great Idea” (Greek: Megali Idea). This was a visionary nationalist aspiration that was to dominate foreign relations and, indeed, to a significant extent, to determine the domestic politics of the Greek state for much of the first century of its independent existence.

      If the expression was new in 1844, the concept was deeply rooted in the Greek popular psyche, nurtured as it was by the prophecies and oracles that had kept alive hopes of eventual emancipation from the Turkish yoke during the dark centuries of the Tourkokratia. In essence, the Great Idea envisaged the restoration of the Christian Orthodox Byzantine Empire, with its capital once again established in Constantinople, which would be achieved by incorporating within the bounds of a single state all the areas of Greek settlement in the Middle East. Besides the Greek populations settled over a wide area of the southern Balkan Peninsula, there were extensive Greek populations in the Ottoman capital, Constantinople (Istanbul) itself; around the shores of the Sea of Marmara; along the western littoral of Asia Minor, particularly in the region of Smyrna (İzmir); in central Anatolia (Cappadocia), where much of the Greek populace was Turkish-speaking but employed the Greek alphabet to write Turkish; and in the Pontus region of northeastern Asia Minor, whose geographic isolation had given rise to a form of Greek barely intelligible elsewhere in the Greek world.

      The Great Idea, the liberation by the Greek state of the “unredeemed” Greeks of the Ottoman Empire, was to be achieved through a combination of military means—an ambitious objective indeed for a state with such limited resources—and a far-reaching program of educational and cultural propaganda aimed at instilling a sense of Hellenic identity in the very large Greek populations that remained under Ottoman rule. The University of Athens (founded 1837) attracted people from all parts of the Greek world to be trained as students and apostles of Hellenism.

      Greece hoped to profit from the Crimean War (1854–56) fought between Russia (as stated above, the only sovereign Orthodox power and looked upon for so long as the most likely liberator of the Greeks) and the Ottoman Empire and its British and French allies. However, Greek neutrality in the conflict was enforced by a British and French occupation of Piraeus, the port of Athens; this was one of several interventions in Greece's internal affairs by the Protecting Powers that made light of Greece's sovereign status.

      King Otto's enthusiasm for the Great Idea at the time of the Crimean War was popular with his subjects, but during the 1850s there was renewed discontent. The manipulation of the 1844 constitution had alienated a younger generation of politicians who had had no direct experience of the war of independence. Moreover, Otto had still not converted to the Orthodox church and still had no heir. The king was driven into exile following a coup in 1862; throughout his remaining days in exile in Bavaria he demonstrated an affection for his subjects that was largely unreciprocated.

Reform, expansion, and defeat
      The downfall of King Otto obliged the Great Powers to search for a new sovereign who could not be drawn from their own dynasties. Their choice was a prince of the Danish Glücksburg family, who reigned as King George I of the Hellenes from 1863 to 1913; thereafter the Glücksburg dynasty reigned intermittently until the 1974 referendum rejected the institution of monarchy. To mark the beginning of the new reign, Britain ceded to Greece the Ionian Islands, over which it had exercised a protectorate since 1815. This represented the first accession of territory to the Greek state since independence.

Political modernization
      A new constitution in 1864 amplified the democratic freedoms of the 1844 constitution, although the sovereign retained substantial, if vaguely defined, powers in foreign policy. However, the realities of politics remained much as before, with numerous elections and even more frequent changes of administration, as politicians formed impermanent coalitions, jockeying for power in the disproportionately large parliament. It was not until 1875 that a decisive step was taken toward political modernization. In that year King George conceded that he would thenceforth entrust the government to the political leader enjoying the confidence of a majority of the deputies in parliament. During the last quarter of the 19th century the kaleidoscopic coalitions of earlier years gave way to a two-party system, in which power alternated between two men, Kharílaos Trikoúpis (Trikoúpis, Kharílaos) and Theodoros Deliyannis (Dhiliyiánnis, Theódoros). Trikoúpis represented the modernizing, Westernizing trend in politics, while Deliyannis was a political boss in the traditional mold, with no real program other than overturning the reforms of his archrival Trikoúpis. Believing the modernization of the political system and economic development to be the essential preconditions of territorial expansion, Trikoúpis struggled to establish Greece's credit-worthiness in international markets and encouraged the country's hesitant steps in the direction of industrialization. He also promoted infrastructural projects such as road building, railway construction, the building of the Corinth Canal, and the draining of Lake Kopaïs in Thessaly. Such measures, however, and also Trikoúpis' concurrent efforts to modernize the country's armed forces, had to be paid for, and the increased taxation they entailed proved an easy target for a populist demagogue such as Deliyannis. Deliyannis was able to court further popularity by advocating an aggressive policy toward the Ottoman Empire, but his belligerence was to have disastrous economic consequences.

Extension of Greek borders
      If Britain had hoped to dampen irredentist enthusiasm by ceding the Ionian Islands, it was sorely mistaken. The continuing agitation in the “Great Island” of Crete for union with the Greek kingdom, which erupted in periodic uprisings, caused inevitable friction in relations with the Ottoman Empire, as did Greece's rather maladroit effort to exploit the latter's discomfiture in the great Middle Eastern crisis of 1875–78, which gave rise to a war between Russia and the Ottoman Empire. The Great Powers, meeting in Berlin (Berlin, Congress of) in 1878, besides cutting down to size the “Big Bulgaria” that had arisen from the conflict, pressed the Ottoman government to cede the rich agricultural province of Thessaly and a part of Epirus to Greece. Thus, in 1881 the second extension of the territory of the independent state came about, like the first—the cession of the Ionian Islands—as a result of mediation by the Great Powers rather than of armed conflict. In 1878, again as part of the Berlin settlement, the island of Cyprus, with its largely Greek population, came under British administration, while formally remaining under Ottoman sovereignty. The island was annexed by Britain in 1914 after the Ottoman Empire had entered the war on the side of the Central Powers, becoming a crown colony in 1925.

Rectification of frontiers
      The incorporation of Thessaly brought the northern frontier of Greece to the borders of Macedonia, which, with its mixed population of Greeks, Bulgarians, Serbs, Albanians, Turks, Vlachs, and Gypsies, was a byword for ethnic complexity. It also brought Greece into contention with Serbia and Bulgaria, all of which cast covetous eyes over Macedonia, which remained under Ottoman rule. Initially, the contest was conducted by means of ecclesiastical, educational, and cultural propaganda, but at the turn of the century rival guerrilla bands, financed by their respective governments (and supported by public opinion), sought to achieve by terror what they could not achieve by more peaceful means.

      While Trikoúpis argued for the strengthening of the state as the essential precondition of territorial expansion, Deliyannis showed no such caution. But his mobilization in 1885 in an attempt to exploit a crisis over Bulgaria resulted in the imposition of a naval blockade by the Great Powers, while his support for the insurgents in Crete in 1897 led to humiliating defeat in the Thirty Days' War with Turkey. Greece was forced to pay compensation and to accept rectifications of its frontier. Moreover, the repayment of its substantial external debts was to be overseen by an international financial commission, another humiliating erosion of its sovereignty.

      Military endeavours compounded serious economic problems, which had culminated in national bankruptcy in 1893. Economic difficulties were primarily responsible for the great wave of emigration, principally from the Peloponnese to the United States, that characterized the last decade of the 19th and the first decade of the 20th century. About one-sixth of the entire population participated in this great exodus. Very largely male, the early emigrants had little intention of settling permanently overseas; few, however, returned to their homeland, although most retained strong nostalgic ties to their birthplace. Migrant remittances to relatives in the old country thenceforward made a significant contribution to the country's balance of payments.

The early Venizélos years
      The clear lesson of the 1897 war was that, however weakened the Ottoman state might be, Greece, notwithstanding the impassioned rhetoric of nationalist politicians, was in no position to engage in single-handed military confrontation. Allies and the reinvigoration of the ramshackle state and economy were the necessary preconditions of a successful military challenge. The latter came about under the inspired leadership of Eleuthérios Venizélos (Venizélos, Eleuthérios), who had made his mark in the politics of his native Crete where an autonomous regime had been established in the aftermath of the 1897 war. A charismatic figure who was adored and execrated in equal measure, Venizélos dominated Greek politics during the first third of the 20th century.

The Goudi coup
      Venizélos was projected from the provincial to the national stage as a consequence of a coup staged by the Military League, formed by disaffected army officers, from Goudi (at the outskirts of Athens) in 1909; this coup ushered in a persistent pattern of military involvement in politics during the 20th century. The conspirators demanded thoroughgoing reforms of both a nonmilitary and a military nature, the latter including the removal of the royal princes, who were held to favour the promotion of their own protégés, from the armed forces.

Venizélos' reformist program
      The short-lived but forceful intervention of the military compelled the discredited political establishment to make way for Venizélos, who had not been compromised by involvement in the petty politics of the kingdom. In elections held in December 1910 Venizélos and his newly founded Liberal Party won more than four-fifths of the seats in parliament. His power legitimized through elections, Venizélos plunged into a wide-ranging program of constitutional reform, political modernization, and economic development, which he combined with an energetic espousal of the Great Idea. Some 50 amendments to the 1864 constitution were enacted; provision was made for land reform; innovations were made in the educational system; and legislation benefiting the working population was introduced. These moderately reformist policies inhibited the development of the powerful agrarian and socialist movements that developed elsewhere in the Balkans. British naval and French military missions were brought in to overhaul the armed forces. Venizélos' continuing political ascendancy was confirmed with a sweeping victory in elections held in 1912.

      The pessimism induced by the defeat of 1897 gave way to a period of optimism, in which Greece grandiosely saw itself as a power in the ascendant, poised to displace a declining Ottoman Empire as the leading power in the Middle East. When, in 1911, Italy attacked the Ottoman Empire (in the process occupying the largely Greek-populated Dodecanese islands), Greece, no less than the other Balkan states, wanted its share of the spoils from the ever more likely collapse of Ottoman rule in the Balkans. However, Greece's situation differed from that of its Balkan neighbours, whose populations were relatively compactly settled within the Balkan peninsula. The Greeks alone were widely dispersed throughout the Middle East and hence were vulnerable to Turkish reprisals in the event of a war. Nonetheless, Greece could scarcely stand aside from the complex of alliances being formed among the Balkan states. These culminated in October 1912 in the First Balkan War, with Greece, Serbia, Bulgaria, and Montenegro declaring war on the Ottoman Empire. In contrast to earlier Balkan crises, the Great Powers did not intervene, and the heavily outnumbered Ottoman forces were forced into rapid retreat. Within less than a month, Thessaloníki (Salonica), the most important port in the northern Aegean, coveted by Bulgaria as well as by Greece, was captured by Greek forces. In February 1913 Greek forces took Ioánnina, the capital of Epirus. Meanwhile the Greek navy rapidly occupied the Aegean islands still under Ottoman rule.

      The Balkan alliance was always a somewhat fragile affair in view of rivalries over Macedonia. Bulgaria, in particular, felt that its sacrifices had been in vain and turned against its erstwhile allies Greece and Serbia. This brief Second Balkan War (June to July 1913) led to the Treaty of Bucharest (August 1913), in which Bulgaria was forced to acknowledge the acquisition by Greece and Serbia of the lion's share of Macedonia. At the same time the formal union of Crete with the kingdom was recognized, although Greek hopes for the annexation of northern Epirus, with its large Greek population, were thwarted when the region was incorporated into the newly independent Albania.

      The expansion of Greece's territories in the First and Second Balkan Wars had been truly breathtaking. Its land area had increased by some 70 percent, and so had its population (from 2.8 million to 4.8 million), but by no means were all of its newly acquired citizens ethnic Greeks. Indeed, in the city of Thessaloníki the largest single element in the city's population comprised Sephardic Jews (Jew), the descendants of the Jews expelled from Spain in 1492, who continued to speak Spanish. Elsewhere in “New Greece,” as the recently acquired territories came to be known, there were substantial Slavic, Muslim (mainly Turkish), Vlach, and Gypsy populations. Like the Jews, many of these populations did not look upon the Greeks as liberators. The integration of “New” with “Old” Greece, the conservative core of the original kingdom, was not to be an easy process, but the problems it created did not emerge until much later.

      At the conclusion of hostilities, Greece was gripped by euphoria. Under the charismatic leadership of Venizélos, the irredentist aspirations enshrined in the Great Idea appeared to be within reach. When King George I died at the hands of a deranged assassin in March 1913, there were demands that his successor, Crown Prince Constantine, be crowned not Constantine I (as he was) but Constantine XII to symbolize continuity with Constantine XI Palaeologus, the last emperor of Byzantium.

Greek history since World War I

From National Schism to dictatorship
      The dynamism and sense of national unity that had characterized the early Venizélos years gave way to rancour and vindictiveness that was to poison the country's political life throughout World War I and the interwar period. Greece was riven by the “National Schism,” a division of the country into irreconcilable camps supporting either King Constantine I or his prime minister, Venizélos. The immediate grounds for tension were differences between the king and the prime minister as to Greece's alignment during World War I, although there were deeper causes underlying the split. The king advocated neutrality, while Venizélos was an enthusiastic supporter of the Triple Entente—Britain, France, and Russia—which he regarded as the alliance most likely to favour the implementation of Greece's remaining irredentist ambitions. The entente had, indeed, in an effort to lure Greece into the war, held out the attractive prospect of territorial gains for Greece at the expense of Turkey, which had aligned itself with the Central Powers. Increasingly bitter disagreements between king and prime minister resulted in the latter twice resigning in 1915, despite a convincing electoral victory.

      The breach between the two became irrevocable when Venizélos in October of 1916 established a rival government in Thessaloníki, which, like most of “New Greece,” was passionately loyal to Venizélos. In June 1917 the entente allies ousted King Constantine and installed Venizélos as prime minister of a formally united but bitterly divided Greece. Venizélos duly brought Greece, hitherto neutral, into the war on the side of the entente. Naturally, he expected to reap the reward for his loyalty at the Paris Peace Conference. In May of 1919 Greece was permitted to land troops in Smyrna (İzmir), the major port city in Asia Minor, with its large Greek population, and Greece was a major beneficiary of the Treaty of Sèvres (Sèvres, Treaty of) of August 1920, the peace treaty with the defeated Ottoman Empire. However, for the Turkish nationalists, galvanized by the leadership of Mustafa Kemal (Atatürk, Kemal) (Atatürk), the treaty was from the outset a dead letter and the Greek landings a challenge they were prepared to meet.

      In November 1920 Venizélos, to universal surprise, was defeated in elections, and the exiled King Constantine I was restored to his throne after a bogus plebiscite to the manifest displeasure of Britain and France. Meanwhile, the military situation in Asia Minor steadily deteriorated; a Turkish nationalist offensive in August/September 1922 resulted in a dramatic rout of the Greek armies in Asia Minor. Much of Smyrna was burned, and many Greeks and Armenians were killed. Tens of thousands of destitute Greek refugees (refugee) fled to the kingdom. Thus ended a 2,500-year Greek presence in Asia Minor and with it the elusive vision of the Great Idea.

      A military junta seized power in 1922 as King Constantine abdicated. Five royalist politicians and the deranged commander of the Asia Minor forces were tried and executed on a charge of high treason, although there was no evidence of deliberate treachery. The “Trial of the Six” was to poison the climate of interwar politics, exacerbating the already bitter feud between the supporters of Venizélos and of the monarchy.

      At a peace conference in Lausanne (Lausanne, Treaty of) an exchange of populations between Greece and the newly established Turkish Republic was agreed upon. The criterion employed was religion, one consequence of which was the exchange of many tens of thousands of Turkish-speaking Orthodox Christians for Greek-speaking Muslims. The ecumenical patriarchate was allowed to remain in Constantinople, as were the Greek inhabitants of that city and of the two islands, Imbros (now Gökçe) and Tenedos (Turkish: Bozca), which straddled the entrance to the strategically sensitive Dardanelles. In return, the Muslims of Greek Thrace were allowed to remain in situ. An influx of some 1.3 million refugees (including significant numbers from Russia and Bulgaria) strongly tested the social fabric of a country prostrated by some 10 years of intermittent war. Nonetheless, leaving aside the prejudice they encountered on the part of the indigenous population, the process of their integration into Greek society was remarkably successful. The economy, benefiting from the entrepreneurial skills of the refugees, experienced a significant degree of industrialization during the interwar period. The remaining large estates were broken up to provide smallholdings for the newcomers, and rural Greece became a society of peasant smallholders, which made for social stability albeit not for economic efficiency. The majority of the refugees were settled in the territories of “New Greece,” thereby consolidating the area's “Greekness.” Although refugees were disproportionately represented in the leadership of the newly founded Greek Communist Party (KKE), they by and large remained intensely loyal to Venizélos. Their vote was clearly instrumental in the formal establishment of a republic in 1923, shortly after the departure of King George II, who had briefly succeeded to the throne following his father's abdication in 1922. Indeed, the refugees and the army acted as the arbiters of political life during the interwar period.

      In 1928 Venizélos made a political comeback, two years after the downfall of the short-lived military dictatorship headed by General Theodoros Pangalos (Pangalos, Theodoros) in 1925–26. Although Venizélos initiated a good-neighbour policy with Italy and Greece's Balkan neighbours and brought about a remarkable rapprochement with Turkey, his government was knocked off course by the repercussions of the Stock Market Crash on Wall Street in 1929. Because Greece was dependent on the export of agricultural products such as olive oil, tobacco, and currants and on migrant remittances, it was severely affected by the slump in world trade.

      Moreover, after four years of relative stability, politics reverted to the confusion of the early 1920s. When the anti-Venizélists won the 1933 elections, Colonel Nikolaos Plastiras, a staunch supporter of Venizélos and the mastermind behind the 1922 coup, sought to restore Venizélos to power by force. His coup was unsuccessful and was shortly afterward followed by an attempt on Venizélos' life. The political arena was once again polarized between supporters of Venizélos and of the monarchy. Fear of a royalist restoration lay behind another attempted coup by Venizelist officers in March 1935. Because of his proven involvement on this occasion, Venizélos was forced into exile in France, where he died shortly afterward, but not before he had urged his supporters to effect a reconciliation with the king.

      The royalists were the main beneficiaries of the abortive 1935 coup, in the aftermath of which King George II had been restored to his throne, following a distinctly dubious plebiscite. Like Venizélos in exile, the king on his return to Greece was in a conciliatory mood. However, elections held under a system of proportional representation in January 1936 produced a deadlock between the two main parliamentary blocs, the Venizelists and the royalists. Both blocs engaged in secret negotiations with the communists, hitherto an insignificant force, who now, with 15 seats in the 300-seat parliament, held the balance of power.

The Metaxas regime and World War II
      Public disillusionment with the endless intrigues of the political world, which had been growing apace in the preceding years, was exacerbated when the news leaked that the main political blocs were secretly negotiating with the communists. When the nonpolitical figure appointed by the king to head a caretaker government charged with overseeing the elections died, he was replaced as prime minister by General Ioannis Metaxas (Metaxas, Ioannis), a marginal figure on the far right of the political spectrum. Metaxas exploited labour unrest and a threatened general strike to persuade the king on Aug. 4, 1936, to suspend key articles of the constitution. Although the suspension purported to be temporary, parliament did not reconvene until 10 years later.

      Backed by the army and tolerated by the king, the Metaxas dictatorship lasted four and a half years. The dictator, whose paternalistic style was signaled by the adoption of titles such as “National Father,” “First Peasant,” and “First Worker,” shared the loathing of parliamentary democracy, liberalism, and communism characteristic of German Nazism and Italian Fascism, but the “Regime of the Fourth of August 1936” altogether lacked their dynamism. The Metaxas regime was neither aggressive nor racist, nor did it seek alliances with the European dictatorships. On the contrary, with the support of the king, Metaxas strove to maintain the country's traditional alignment toward Britain. The dictator, however, endeavoured to recast the Greek character in a more disciplined mode, invoking the values of ancient Greece and, in particular, of the Spartans. He furthermore sought to fuse them with the values of the medieval Christian Empire of Byzantium, thus fashioning what he pompously described as the “Third Hellenic Civilization.”

      At the outbreak of World War II Metaxas tried to maintain neutrality, but Greece was increasingly subject to pressure from Italy, whose dictator Benito Mussolini sought an easy military triumph to match those of his ally Adolf Hitler. A series of provocations culminated in the delivery of a humiliating ultimatum on Oct. 28, 1940. Metaxas, reflecting the mood of the entire nation, rejected this without discussion. The Italians immediately invaded Greece from Albania, which they had occupied 18 months previously. But any hopes of a lightning military triumph were rapidly dashed. Within weeks not only had the Italians been driven from Greek territory, but Greek forces had pushed on to occupy much of what the Greeks term “Northern Epirus,” the area of southern Albania with a substantial Greek minority.

      While accepting token British military aid, Metaxas, until his death in January 1941, was anxious to avoid provoking German intervention in the conflict. However, his successor agreed to accept a British expeditionary force as it became apparent that Hitler's aggressive designs extended to the Balkans. The combined Greek and British forces, however, were able to offer only limited resistance when the German juggernaut rolled across the borders on April 6, 1941. By the beginning of June the country was overrun and subject to a harsh tripartite German, Italian, and Bulgarian occupation. King George II and his government-in-exile fled to the Middle East. The requisitioning of food stocks resulted in a terrible famine during the winter of 1941–42, in which as many as 100,000 people died. In 1943 virtually the entire Jewish (Jew) population was deported to death camps in Germany. A devastatingly high rate of inflation added to the miseries and humiliations of everyday life.

      Almost from the outset of the occupation, acts of resistance were recorded. These took a more systematic form after the Communist Party in September 1941 founded the National Liberation Front (EAM), whose military arm was known under the initials ELAS. Although the communists had been a marginal force during the interwar period, EAM/ELAS became the largest resistance organization. Other groups came into being, the most important of which, the National Republican Greek League ( EDES), opposed, as did EAM/ELAS, the return of the king upon liberation. With the support of a British military mission, the guerrillas (guerrilla) engaged in some spectacular acts of resistance, the most notable of which was the destruction in November 1942 of the Gorgopotamos viaduct, which carried the railway line from Thessaloníki to Athens.

      Just as during the War of Independence and World War I, so during this time of grave national crisis internecine strife divided the resistance organizations. Besides fighting the Axis occupation, they jockeyed for postwar power. During the winter of 1943–44 civil war broke out in the mountains of Greece between EAM/ELAS and the much smaller EDES, which, however, enjoyed the support of the British authorities, who had become increasingly alarmed at the prospect of a postliberation seizure of power by the communists.

      Not for the first time in Greek history, the country's fate was to be determined by the Great Powers. The British prime minister, Winston Churchill, eager to see King George II restored to his throne, engaged in the summer and autumn of 1944 in some high-level negotiations with the Soviet leader, Joseph Stalin (Stalin, Joseph), trading Russian predominance in postwar Romania for British predominance in Greece. True to the spirit of this deal, it would seem, Stalin gave no encouragement to the Greek communists to make a bid for power in the autumn of 1944 as the Germans began their withdrawal, even though by this time they were by far the most powerful force in occupied Greece.

      The confrontation was only postponed, however, for bloody fighting broke out in Athens in December 1944 between ELAS and the small British force that had accompanied the Greek government on its return from exile on October 18. It was a sign of Churchill's obsession with the crisis in Greece that he flew to Athens on Christmas Eve 1944 in an unsuccessful attempt to resolve it. The British prime minister, however, was able to persuade King George II not to return to Greece pending a plebiscite on the monarchy and to accept the regency of Archbishop Damaskinos of Athens. A temporary respite in the struggle between left and right was achieved at the Varkiza conference in February 1945, which aimed at a political settlement of the crisis.

Civil war and its legacy
      The first elections since the fateful ones of 1936 were held in March 1946. These, however, were flawed, and, with the far left abstaining, resulted in a sweeping victory for the royalist right. In September a plebiscite issued in a vote for the return of King George II; he died within six months and was succeeded by his brother Paul. Against this background the country slid toward civil war as the far left was undecided as to whether to work within the political system or to make an armed bid for power.

      The turning point toward civil war came with the establishment in October 1946 of a communist-controlled Democratic Army. In December 1947 the communists established a Provisional Democratic Government. Although heavily outnumbered, the communists were able, with the logistical support from the newly established communist regimes to the north, coupled with skillful use of guerrilla tactics, to control a wide area of northern Greece for a substantial period of time. Following the declaration of the Truman Doctrine in March 1947, which pledged support for “free peoples” in their fight against internal subversion, the tide gradually began to turn, as the United States, assuming Britain's former mantle as Greece's chief external patron, provided military equipment and advice. American intervention and the consequences of the break between Josip Broz Tito and Stalin, combined with factionalism and altered military tactics on the left, all contributed to the defeat of the communist guerrillas in the summer of 1949.

      Greece emerged from the travails of the 1940s in a state of devastation. Nonetheless, if the post-civil-war political regime had a distinctly authoritarian hue, from the mid-1950s Greece underwent a rapid, if unevenly distributed, process of economic and social development, far surpassing its communist neighbours to the north in standard of living. The population of greater Athens more than doubled in size between 1951 and 1981, and by the early 1990s about one-third of the entire population was concentrated in the area of the capital. However, if urbanization progressed quickly and living standards rose rapidly, the country's political institutions failed to keep pace with rapid change. Following a brief centrist interlude, the right maintained a firm grip on power between 1952 and 1963 and was none too scrupulous about the means it employed to retain it.

      By the early 1960s, however, the electorate (which now included women) had become increasingly disenchanted with the repressive legacy of the civil war and looked for change. This was offered by Georgios Papandreou (Papandreou, Georgios), whose Centre Union Party secured a sweeping victory in 1964. Yet the promise of reform and modernization was thwarted as, against a background of renewed crisis in Cyprus, groups within the army conspired to subvert the country's democratic institutions. A guerrilla campaign in Cyprus, fought from the mid-1950s onward with tenacity and ruthlessness by the Greek-Cypriot general Georgios Grivas (Grivas, Georgios), had resulted in 1960 in the British conceding not the union with the Greek state sought by the overwhelming Greek-Cypriot majority on the island but independence. However, within three years the elaborate power-sharing arrangements between the Greek majority and the Turkish minority on the island had broken down.

      During the civil war and after, Greece's armed forces had come to look upon themselves not only as the country's guardians against foreign aggression but also as its defenders against internal subversion, of which they were to be the final judge. They increasingly viewed Georgios Papandreou as a stalking horse for his much more radical American-educated son, Andreas Papandreou (Papandreou, Andreas), who had returned to Greece and joined his father's government.

      On April 21, 1967, middle-ranking officers, led by Colonel Georgios Papadopoulos, launched a coup designed to thwart an expected Centre Union victory in elections planned for May of that year. The conspirators took advantage of a prolonged political crisis, which had its origins in a dispute between the young King Constantine II, who had succeeded his father, King Paul, to the throne in 1964, and his septuagenarian prime minister, Georgios Papandreou. Alternating between policies that were heavy-handed and absurd, the “Colonels,” as the military junta came to be known, misruled the country between 1967 and 1974. In December 1967, after a failed countercoup, King Constantine went into exile, with Papadopoulos assuming the role of regent. In 1973, following student protests, which were violently suppressed, Papadopoulos was toppled from within the junta, to be replaced by the even more repressive brigadier general Demetrios Ioannidis, the head of the much-feared military police.

      In July 1974, in the wake of an increasingly bitter dispute between Greece and Turkey over oil rights in the Aegean Sea, Ioannidis, seeking a nationalist triumph, launched a coup to depose Makarios III, the archbishop and president of Cyprus since 1960. Makarios survived, but the coup triggered the invasion of the northern part of the island by Turkey, which, together with Britain and Greece, was a guarantor of the 1960 constitutional settlement. The Turkish army occupied almost 40 percent of the land area of the island, despite the fact that the Turkish population numbered less than 20 percent. Ioannidis' response to the Turkish invasion was to mobilize for war with Turkey. The mobilization proved chaotic, however, and the regime, bitterly unpopular domestically and totally isolated diplomatically, collapsed in complete disarray.

Restoration of democracy
      Konstantinos Karamanlis (Karamanlis, Konstantinos), a conservative politician, was summoned back from self-imposed exile in France to restore democracy and rebuild a country ravaged by seven years of brutal and inefficient military rule. This he accomplished with signal success. He defused the threat of outright war with Turkey, ensured that the army returned to the barracks, and, acknowledging the way in which opposition to the junta had brought together politicians of all political backgrounds, legalized the Communist Party, which had been outlawed in 1947. He moved rapidly to legitimize his power through elections held in November 1974, in which he secured a sweeping victory. In December of the same year, a referendum on the future of the monarchy resulted in a 69 percent vote against the monarchy and the return of King Constantine.

      Karamanlis' second premiership lasted from 1974 until 1980, when he was elected president. By this time he had achieved his main objective, early membership in the European Community, which Greece joined in January 1981. His failure to counter the populist appeal of Andreas Papandreou's Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK) resulted in a stunning electoral victory for PASOK in 1981.

      The smooth transfer of power from a right wing that had held power for much of the postwar period to a radical (at the level of rhetoric at least) socialist government appeared to indicate that Greece's newly reestablished democratic institutions were firmly in place. During almost a decade in power, Papandreou's promise of “Change” and a dramatic reorientation in the country's domestic politics and external relations was not fulfilled. Ambitious plans to “socialize” key sections of industry failed to materialize, and the attempt to create a welfare state could be sustained only by enormous borrowing. Important reforms were, however, introduced in family law, and society was liberalized in other respects. It was testimony to Papandreou's ability to articulate both the aspirations and frustrations of a large segment of the electorate that, despite a poor economic record and amid accusations of large-scale corruption in the higher reaches of the party, the conservative New Democracy Party (New Democracy) only just scraped into power in 1990. The new government, with Konstantinos Mitsotakis (Mitsotakis, Konstantinos) elected prime minister, was committed to a policy of economic liberalism and the diminution of the powers of the state, but the problems that confronted it were formidable. The policies of economic stringency introduced by Mitsotakis and, in particular, proposals for the privatization of the large state sector were unpopular with much of the electorate. In 1993 Papandreou's PASOK returned to power with a share of the vote only marginally smaller than it had received at the time of its electoral triumph in 1981. The underlying economic and infrastructural problems facing Greece remained.

Richard Ralph Mowbray Clogg

Additional Reading

General works
All aspects of the country are treated in Glenn E. Curtis (ed.), Greece: A Country Study, 4th ed. (1995). John Campbell and Philip Sherrard, Modern Greece (1968), contains, besides useful historical surveys, valuable chapters on the Orthodox church, literature, and the economy, while paying attention to the values underpinning society. A good source for readings on Greece is Mary Jo Clogg and Richard Clogg (compilers), Greece (1980), a bibliography with more than 800 entries on some 30 subjects, with the majority of cited sources in English.Catherine Delano Smith

Greece during the Byzantine period (c. AD 300–c. 1453)
Johannes Koder and Friedrich Hild, Hellas und Thessalia (1976), provides a detailed regional historical and geographic survey and includes an extensive bibliography as well as a discussion of the historical and political evolution of the region.General surveys of the history of the Byzantine world all include information dealing with Greece at the appropriate junctures. The most useful are George Ostrogorsky, History of the Byzantine State, 2nd ed. (1968, reissued 1980; originally published in German, 3rd rev. ed., 1963); and The Cambridge Medieval History, 2nd ed., vol. 4, The Byzantine Empire, ed. by J.M. Hussey, 2 parts (1966–67); the latter in particular contains material relevant to the local historical evolution of the various Greek regions. A wealth of detail on the society and economy of the late Roman world, as well as on the provincial administration of the Greek regions, is provided by A.H.M. Jones, The Later Roman Empire, 284–602: A Social Economic and Administrative Survey, 2 vol. (1964, reprinted 1986). The transition from late Roman to early Byzantine structures, the fate of urban society, and the effects of the disruptions of the 7th century are surveyed in J.F. Haldon, Byzantium in the Seventh Century: The Transformation of a Culture (1990), with detailed discussion of a number of fundamental developments. Society and economy in the later period are treated in Alan Harvey, Economic Expansion in the Byzantine Empire, 900–1200 (1989), for the period to the Fourth Crusade; and Angeleki E. Laiou-Thomadakis, Peasant Society in the Late Byzantine Empire (1977), for the period from about 1204 until the end of the empire. Michael F. Hendy, Studies in the Byzantine Monetary Economy, c. 300–1450 (1985), presents a detailed collection of surveys of the physical geography, land use, and settlement patterns of the Balkans (as well as other regions of the empire), together with a discussion of the nature of the Byzantine economy, the fiscal administration, and related topics. Nicolas Oikonomidès, Les Listes de préséance byzantines des IXe et Xe siècles (1972), presents the evidence for the development of the middle Byzantine provincial, fiscal, and administrative structures that evolved in Greece during this period. The most accessible materials for demography and population are Peter Charanis, “On the Demography of Medieval Greece: A Problem Solved,” Balkan Studies, 20:193–218 (1979); and Peter Charanis (compiler), Studies on the Demography of the Byzantine Empire (1972), a collection of articles.Works dealing specifically with Greece include Apostolos E. Vacalopoulos, Origins of the Greek Nation, trans. from Greek (1970); and Nicolas Cheetham, Mediaeval Greece (1981), both of which provide excellent general accounts, the former in particular presenting both the political, socioeconomic, and ethnic-linguistic issues. English-language surveys of different regions are Donald M. Nicol, The Despotate of Epiros, 1267–1479 (1984); D.A. Zakythinos (Dionysios A. Zakythènos), Le Despotat grec de Morée, 2 vol., rev. and augmented by Chryssa Maltézou (1975); and Michael Angold, A Byzantine Government in Exile: Government and Society Under the Laskarids of Nicaea, 1204–1261 (1975). Particular aspects of regional history are discussed in David Jacoby, Recherches sur la Méditerranée orientale du XIIe au XVe siècle: peuples, sociétés, économies (1979); and Peter Topping, “The Morea, 1311–1364,” and “The Morea, 1364–1460,” in Kenneth M. Setton (ed.), A History of the Crusades, vol. 3 (1975), pp. 104–166, all of which deal with social and economic as well as political and historical problems connected with the Latin/Frankish presence in Greece. The roles of the Vlachs and Albanians are examined by T.J. Winnifrith, The Vlachs (1987); and Alain Ducellier, L'Albanie entre Byzance et Venise, Xe–XVe siecles (1987). A useful and important survey of Byzantium and the Slavs, as well as the Vlachs and Albanians, is Dimitri Obolenski, The Byzantine Commonwealth: Eastern Europe, 500–1453 (1971, reissued 1982). A basic reference work that deals with all the topics referred to, sometimes in detail, and that also includes further references is Alexander P. Kazhdan (ed.), The Oxford Dictionary of Byzantium, 2 vol. (1991).John Frederick Haldon

Greece under Ottoman rule, 1453–1831
Arnold Toynbee, The Greeks and Their Heritages (1981), is a stimulating survey of the whole range of Greek history from prehistoric times to the present day. One of the few scholarly studies in English of the dark age of Greek history, between the fall of Constantinople and the capture of Crete, is Apostolos E. Vacalopoulos, The Greek Nation, 1453–1669: The Cultural and Economic Background of Modern Greek Society, trans. from Greek (1976). An overview of the critical four centuries of Ottoman rule is contained in D.A. Zakythinos (Dionysios A. Zakythènos), The Making of Modern Greece: From Byzantium to Independence (1976). The crucial role of the church during the period is discussed in Steven Runciman, The Great Church in Captivity: A Study of the Patriarchate of Constantinople from the Eve of the Turkish Conquest to the Greek War of Independence (1968, reissued 1985). Richard Clogg (ed. and trans.), The Movement for Greek Independence, 1770–1821 (1976), illustrates the emergence of the Greek national movement through contemporary documents; while G.P. Henderson, The Revival of Greek Thought, 1620–1830 (1970), focuses on the intellectual revival that preceded the outbreak of the war of independence in 1821. The war itself is covered in Douglas Dakin, The Greek Struggle for Independence, 1821–1833 (1973); and the diplomacy of the period is analyzed in C.W. Crawley, The Question of Greek Independence; A Study of British Policy in the Near East, 1821–1833 (1930, reprinted 1973). The colourful story of the philhellene volunteers who fought alongside the insurgent Greeks is told by William St. Clair, That Greece Might Still Be Free: The Philhellenes in the War of Independence (1972). The independence movement is also traced in C.M. Woodhouse, Capodistria: The Founder of Greek Independence (1973), a study of the first president of Greece.

Greece since 1831
Richard Clogg, A Concise History of Greece (1992), an illustrated survey, focuses mainly on the 19th and 20th centuries. Douglas Dakin, The Unification of Greece, 1770–1923 (1972), is a detailed study of the gradual expansion of the Greek state. The early years of King Otto's reign are studied in considerable detail in John A. Petropoulos, Politics and Statecraft in the Kingdom of Greece, 1833–1843 (1968). Charles K. Tuckerman, The Greeks of To-day, 3rd ed. rev. and corrected (1886), is a perceptive account of mid-19th century Greece written by the first U.S. minister to Greece. The Goudi coup of 1901, the first of many military interventions in the political process in the 20th century, is the subject of S. Victor Papacosma, The Military in Greek Politics (1977). The meddling of Britain and France in Greece's internal affairs during the First World War is treated by George B. Leon, Greece and the Great Powers, 1914–1917 (1974); while Michael Llewellyn Smith, Ionian Vision: Greece in Asia Minor, 1919–1922 (1973), thoroughly treats the disastrous Anatolian entanglement. George Th. Mavrogordatos, Stillborn Republic: Social Coalitions and Party Strategies in Greece, 1922–1936 (1983), provides an indispensable guide to the complex politics of the interwar period. The impact of the Axis occupation is investigated by Mark Mazower, Inside Hitler's Greece (1993). A critical decade of foreign occupation, resistance, and civil war is the subject of C.M. Woodhouse, The Struggle for Greece, 1941–1949 (1976), while his The Rise and Fall of the Greek Colonels (1985) analyzes one of the consequences of the civil war, the military dictatorship of 1967–74. C.M. Woodhouse, Karamanlis: The Restorer of Greek Democracy (1982), traces the political career of the politician who oversaw the return to democracy. The whirlwind rise to power in 1981 of Andreas Papandreou and his PASOK party is the subject of Michalis Spourdalakis, The Rise of the Greek Socialist Party (1988).Richard Ralph Mowbray Clogg

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Universalium. 2010.

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