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Kalymnos (Municipality, Greece)


Last modified: 2014-11-15 by ivan sache
Keywords: kalymnos |
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Flag of Kalymnos - Image by Olivier Touzeau, 3 November 2013

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Presentation of Kalymnos

The municipality of Kalymnos (16,179 inhabitants in 2011, 13,450 ha) is located to the west of the Turkish peninsula of Bodrum (the ancient Halicarnassos), between the islands of Kos and Leros. The island is known as Càlino in Italian and Kilimli or Kelemez in Turkish. The island is the third most populous island of the Dodecanese, after Kos and Rhodes.
The municipality was not modified with 2011 local government reform.

Kalymnos is mainly mountainous with complicated topography. The coastline is very irregular, with many sheltered coves.
Kalymnos is known as the sponge-divers' island. Sponge diving has long been a common occupation on Kalymnos and sponges were the main source of income of Kalymnians. An annual celebration, Sponge Week, occurs a week after Easter to honour this "Kalymnian gold". In recent times, tourism has become important for the island, particularly rock climbing.

In Antiquity Kalymnos depended on Kos, and followed its history. In the Middle Ages it was under the influence of the Byzantine Empire, and during the 13th century it was used by the Venitian Republic as a naval base. In 1310 it came under the control of the Knights of Rhodes, and later (mainly in 1457 and 1460) was often attacked by the Ottomans, who conquered it in 1522. Unlike Rhodes and Kos, during the Ottoman period there was no Turkish immigration to Kalymnos.
On May 12, 1912, during the Italo-Turkish War, Kalymnos was occupied by Italian sailors. Italy took control of the island along with other islands of the Dodecanese until 1947, when the Dodecanese were finally united with mainland Greece, as part of the modern Greek state.

Olivier Touzeau, 3 November 2013

Flag of Kalymnos

The flag of Kalymnos (photo) is blue with a large red outer border and a thin yellow/gold inner border. It includes a map of the municipality, the words ΔΗΜΟΣ ΚΑΛΥΜΝΙΩΝ, a lyre (part of the official emblem of the municipality) in the upper fly, and a diving helmet in the lower hoist.

Olivier Touzeau, 3 November 2013