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Greek War of Independence

Greek: Ελληνικη Επανασταση
Official Day of Independence: Mach 25, 1821
Population of new state in 1821: 800,000

Greek War of Independece oil Painting  by Theodoros Vryzakis.

Greek War of Independece oil Painting
by Theodoros Vryzakis.

The Greek War of Independence was a war fought by the Greek Revolutionaries against the Ottoman Empire between 1821 and 1830. Since the fall of Constantinople in 1453 most of Greece had come under Ottoman rule and for the next 400 years attempts were made by the Greeks to regain their independence. Only a few regions managed to evade Ottoman Empire rule. Mani, in south-eastern Peloponnesus, managed to stay free due to a very rocky and mountainous geography that allowed Maniotes to stay hidden and protected. The Ionian islands also managed to stay free because they were under Venetian rule.

In the late eighteenth century Rigas Feraiosconceived a national movement to liberate all Balkan nations from the Turks. His poem, the Thourios (war-song), served as an inspirational poem for all Greeks. He was arrested by Austrian officials in 1797 and strangled to death by Ottoman officials the following year. After his death Greek Revolutionaries began to conceive a plan to liberate Greece. In 1814 a secret organizationcalled the filiki Eteria was founded in Odessa, Ukraine with the purpose of liberating Greece. The filiki Eteria attempted for the next few years to liberate parts of Greece from the Ottoman Empire, recruiting members from all parts of the Greek world. Eventually onMarch 17, 1821 the Maniots officially declared war on the Ottoman Empire and captured and liberated Kalamata on March 25, 1821.

During the war many PhilHellenes from across Europe came to the aid of the Greeks such as Lord Byron, the famous poet from England. Russia, the United Kingdom and France all came to the aid of Greece and would help drive the Ottomans out from the Peloponnese in 1828. They would continue to fight for the next hundred years in accordance with the “Megalie Idea” (the goal of uniting all Greeks into one country). It would take decades to liberate other Greek states such as Crete, Epirus, the Aegean islands, parts of Macedonia and other Greek-speaking territories ending with the Greco-Turkish war of 1922. The Greek War of Independence had a lasting influence on other revolutions that would take place throughout Europe. The Serbs, Bulgars, Armenians, Romanians and Poles would all take inspiration from the Greeks and start their own fight for independence.

Greek War of Independence by the Greek Orthodox Telecommunications:

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