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Culture in Pelion

The region of Magnesia is one of the four regions of Thessally and one of the most important in the Central Greece. As any other place in Greece is filled with beauty and legends, were history appears from every corner and the past meets the present on various sites, buildings and monuments.

The region is called Magnesia after the first inhabitants who came to the area and they called Magnites. From mythology we learn that Magnesia and Pelion was the place that took place the Gigantomahia ( Giants war), the place that were lived mythical centaurs with centaur Heron who is the most known, here took place thePelion Culture - Pilio Holidays Greece wedding between king Peleas and the nymph Thetis, were their love seed was the famous hero Achilles. From Iolkos’s port begin the mythical sail of Argonauts, with leader the hero Jason, towards the ancient city Kolhis to take the Golden Fleece.

Excavations that took place here, brought to light many information about the ancient cities such as Fthiotides Thives, today’s Aghialo, Dimitrias thet was the capital Christian center of Magnesia during the first Christian Years.

During the Byzantine period Magnesia were established as an important Christian power but was suffered under many attacks by pirates, Gothic races and Huns. These attacks had as result the people of the coastal cities to move and relocate to inaccessible areas of the mount Pelion.

So in the new places started to build fortified monasteries for the people’s protection. During the ottoman occupation while the rest of Greece was suffering under the ruling, those inaccessible areas were in no interest for the Turks, so they stayed Greek territories. That gave the opportunity to the operating monasteries on these areas to support the keep increasing number of Greek people who they were looking refuge to the mountain.

So that way were create and founded the first villages of Pelion, where every monastery was the core of inhabitation support. Having a relatively freedom and not having the Turkish authorities presents on their life, the Pelion villages managed to develop in economy and literature.

People coming from the literature field as well as from the church, such as Rigas Fereos and Anthimos Gazis, were organizing revolutionary movements against the Turkish ruling and managed to succeed great damages to the rulers. Those revolutionary activities though had as result the lifting of all the privileges, continuous punishments and penalties. Pelion Culture - Pilio Holidays GreeceThe years that followed was very difficult for the people of Magnesia, and so, many were forced to emigrate so they will support their families.

During the Turkish occupation came to Pelion many workers and technicians from Epirus, where in cooperation with the local technicians, buid churches, three storey mansions, arched stone bridges and coble stoned paths.

But also it is still obvious the influence in the architecture coming from East and Egypt, where were emigrated the Magnesian people. Those people were prospered at the foreign places, and in respond they helped the economy of their birth places and build hospitals, luxurious mansions, and schools.

On the following years Magnesia was a prosperous region but with the Balkan wars, the middle period, the 2WW, the earth squeaks of 1955, the frost and the agricultural disasters, the economy’s ascending course changed and stopped.

That had as result another emigration wave, and many people left their places and immigrated to bigger countries in Greece and the world.
Pelion Culture - Pilio Holidays Greece
Today the region of Magnesia has 200.000 inhabitants, where they succeed the constant upgrading and development, by creating local businesses and work shops, equal to the ones in the bigger cities and some time even better than these. They have athletic centers, stadiums, modern facilities and comforts.

The old model of Magnesia’s economy that was based mainly on the agriculture has changed, by making big investments on the industrial and tourism field.

The agriculture modernized is still one of the important economy supplies and comes to add to the new ways of economy such as using the local products, by the women associations, by making labeled traditional products, sweets, herbals, organic foods etc.

A very important presence is that of the traditional embroideries, the ceramics with folklore and modern designs, wooden carved artifacts and also the mining of the famous Pelion’s schist stone, that is one of the most important occupations in Magnesia.


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