P.A.H.H. logo

Out of the Balkans

Part 1: Out of the Balkans

Chapter 1:
Eleni and Evangelia: Out of Thrace and the Black Sea


  1. Also known as Arumanians, these people are likely descendants of Roman soldier-colonists of Dacia, located in the Transylvanian region of Romania. They migrated and settled throughout the Balkans. The mountainous regions of Greece ~ Epirus and Macedonia ~ know them as transhumant shepherds. [Return to the text at note 26.]

  2. An ecclesiastical jurisdiction governed by a patriarch. There are eight such in the Orthodox Church, the four ancient patriarchates of the East, and the four Slavic patriarchates. [Return to the text at note 27.]

  3. Douglas Dakin, The Unification of Greece, 1770-1923 (London,: Benn, 1972), 6. "Porte" (also known as the "Sublime Porte") is a reference to the high gate that led to the buildings housing the offices of the Ottoman government in Constantinople, and is therefore a reference to the government. [Return to the tex at note 28.]

  4. Now Kaynardzha, NE Bulgaria, in the Dobruja, near the Danube and SE of Silistra. [Return to the text at note 29.]

  5. Catherine even retained Greek speaking servants properly to train Konstantin for his future role. [Return to the text at note 30.]

  6. The iconostasion is a screen, adorned with various icons, that separates the sanctuary or altar from the church proper in the Greek Orthodox Church. At its center is a door that controls access to, and viewing of the sanctuary. [Return to the text at note 31.]

  7. The Porte held the Patriarch and the Bishops accountable for civil disorder among the Orthodox people (the millet), thus brutally punished them for their failure to prevent insurrection. The gate leading to a side entrance of the Patriarch's residence still exists, though welded shut in memory of the Patriarch who was martyred there. [Return to the text at note 32.]

  8. The institution of slavery was widespread in the Ottoman world. Slaves were captured from Eastern Europe to the Caucasus to meet the Sultan's demands. They served in every capacity: household servants, soldiers, concubines, and even in high positions in government as civil servants. [Return to the text at note 33.]

  9. Friendly to Greece or Greeks in relation to national independence, or an admirer of Hellenic civilization. [Return to the text at note 34.]

  10. The Battles of Marathon and Thermopylae were fought and won by the Greek city-states in the fifth century B.C. against the Persian armies of Darius and Xerxes, respectively. For a fascinating, almost novel-like historical account see: Peter Green, The Greco-Persian Wars (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1996). [Return to the text at note 35.]
  11. Navarino Bay is on the west coast of the Peloponnesos close to the ancient Mycenean city of Pylos. Navarino Bay was always a staging post between the Middle East and the Mediterranean, and between the Eastern Mediterranean and the Black Sea. See: C. M. Woodhouse, The Battle of Navarino ([London]: Hoddler and Stoughton, 1965). [Return to the text at note 36.]

  12. Ibid., 46. [Return to the text at note 37.]

  13. Ibid., 163. [Return to the text at note 38.]

  14. In the sense that Constantinople's Greeks had a Greek/Byzantine legacy as citizens of the New Rome. [Return to the text at note 39.]

  15. All participants in ancient warfare committed horrid atrocities. In 1014 A.D., the Byzantine Emperor Basil completed his conquest of Bulgaria with the capture of 15,000 Bulgars. To punish his enemies, Basil, remembered in history as Basil the Bulgar-Slayer, had ninety-nine of every one hundred prisoners blinded. The remaining prisoner was blinded in only one eye so that he might lead his comrades back to the King of the Bulgars as examples of Byzantine wrath. See: Norwich, A Short History of Byzantium, 215. [Return to the text at note 40.]

  16. Schevill, The History of the Balkan Peninsula, from the Earliest Times to the Present Day 148, 149. [Return to the text at note 41.]

  17. The warfare involved Macedonia Greeks, Serbs, Bulgarians, Vlachs, and Albanians; Turks, and volunteer forces from Crete and Greece. [Return to the text at note 42.]

  18. A "Pontic Greek" is from the Black Sea region known as the "Pontus." On the southeastern coastline of the Black Sea, the region extends roughly from Sinope on the west to Batum on the border of modern day Republic of Georgia, ancient Colchis. This coastline is isolated from the inland areas of Turkey by the Pontic Mountains, which reach a height of almost 13,000 feet. Xenophon led his Greek mercenaries over these mountains to reach the Pontos in an early fourth century B.C. escape from Persian forces. [Return to the text at note 43.]

  19. See: Michael Llewellyn Smith, Ionian Vision : Greece in Asia Minor, 1919-1922 (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1998). [Return to the text at note 44.]

  20. Eleni's Death Certificate gives her age as 47 on May 26, 1933. The Manifest of the S.S. Macedonia, the ship that brought her and her daughter to America, shows her age to be 32 on July 31, 1912, which would have made her 53 at the time of her death. Her photographs lend credence to her having been born in 1880. She may have hidden her age because of her marriage to a much younger man in Chicago in 1916. [Return to the text at note 45.]

  21. Variants of the name include: Zissis, Ziso, Zisu, Zisou, Zison, Zisova, etc. [Return to the text at note 46.]

  22. Tunny are Pelamyds, or young tuna fish. Both the Atlantic Bonito and a species identified as "Little Tunny" are found in the Mediterranean and Black Seas. [Return to the text at note 47.]

  23. Burgas was known in medieval times, and even by 19th century Greeks, as Pyrgos, which in ancient and Medieval Greek meant tower, or tower of defense. The Latin burgus meant a castle, fort or fortress. According to the historians of the modern Municipality of Bourgas: "For the first time the name of Bourgas appeared as early as 1306 in a poem by Manuel Phil, Bysantium poet, as Pirgos ~ the Greek equivalent to the Latin word Burgos, i.e., 'the Tower': a name preserved in local legends, and dating as back as the 1st or 2nd century A.D., when a Roman travel station was functioning at the place of the present-day harbour." Pyrgos often is spelled Pirgos, and Burgas is often spelled Bourgas. [Return to the text at note 48.]

  24. ". . . of the Hellenes," not "of Greece." The difference is significant. King George was brought to his throne as King of all the Hellenic people, whether in Greece or not. The title embodied the dream of a renewed Byzantium, with Constantinople as its capitol. In anticipation of the dream's realization King George's first son was named Constantine, in keeping with the names of the first and last emperors. [Return to the text at note 49.]

  25. The Prince was evidently able to see and smell the contents of the slop buckets that had been emptied over the cliffs by the locals. [Return to the text at note 50.]

Helpful Links

[Skip the navigation links: Jump to the Citation Guidelines.]

Navigation Links

[Skip the citation guidelines: Jump to the Bottom of the Page.]

Citation Guidelines

(This is the bottom of the page.)