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Paros (Municipality, Greece)


Last modified: 2015-08-10 by ivan sache
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Flag of Paros - Image by Olivier Touzeau, 16 December 2014

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Presentation of Paros

The municipality of Paros (13,715 inhabitants in 2011, 19,630 ha), located in the central Aegean Sea, in the Cyclades island group, includes the island of Paros and numerous uninhabited offshore islets.
The municipality was not modified with the 2011 local government reform.

Historically, Paros was known for its fine white marble. During the Antiquity (in ~720/705 BC), the island received from Athens a colony of Ionians under whom it attained a high degree of prosperity. Shortly before the Persian War, Paros seems to have been a dependency of Naxos. In the first Greco-Persian War (490 BC), Paros sided with the Persians. In retaliation, the capital was besieged by an Athenian fleet under Miltiades, but the town offered a vigorous resistance, and the Athenians were obliged to sail away after a siege of 26 days, during which they had wasted the island. Paros also sided with shahanshah Xerxes I of Persia against Greece in the second Greco-Persian War (480-479 BC). For their support of the Persians, the islanders were later punished by the Athenian war leader Themistocles, who exacted a heavy fine.
Under the Delian League, the Athenian-dominated naval confederacy (477-404 BC), Paros was one of the wealthiest islands in the Aegean. Little is known about the constitution of Paros, but inscriptions seem to show that it was modeled on the Athenian democracy. Paros was included in the second Athenian confederacy (378-355 BC). In c. 357 BC, along with Chios, it severed its connection with Athens. The Cyclades were then probably subjected to the Ptolemies, the Hellenistic dynasty (305-30 BC) that ruled Egypt. Paros then became part of the Roman Empire and later of the Byzantine Empire.

In 1204, the soldiers of the Fourth Crusade seized Constantinople and overthrew the Byzantine Empire. But many of the original Byzantine territories, including Paros, were lost permanently to the crusading powers. Paros became subject to the Duchy of the Archipelago, a fiefdom made up of various Aegean islands ruled by a Venetian duke as nominal vassal of a succession of crusader states. In practice, however, the duchy was always a client state of the Republic of Venice.
In 1537, Paros was conquered by the Ottoman Turks and remained under the Ottoman Empire until the Greek War of Independence (1821-1829). During the Russo-Turkish War (1768-1774) Naoussa Bay was the home base for the Russian Archipelago Squadron of Count Alexey Orlov. Under the Treaty of Constantinople (1832), Paros became part of the newly independent Kingdom of Greece.

Olivier Touzeau, 16 December 2014

Flag of Paros

The flag of Paros (Kokkonis website) is white with the municipal emblem in the middle.

Olivier Touzeau, 16 December 2014