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Syros , Cyclades capital

The island of Syros or Siros is the capital of the Cyclades. It is not a very tall island and its area is 86 km2 and it has about 35,000 inhabitants. The name Syros has been used since antiquity and it is probably of Phoenician origin. There was a sizable Cycladic settlement (Bronze age) over the NE coast and the island is mentioned in the Odyssey as the home of the swineherd Eumaios. Pythagoras' teacher Pherekydes was from here. In the Middle Ages Syros was dominated by the Venetians. Today there is a sizable Catholic population, remnant of that period. In later times many well known European visitors such as Byron, Nerval, Chateaubriand, and Melville started their Eastern Mediterranean tour from here. During the 1821 war of independence many refugees from Chios and Psara came to Syros. Until that time the population was predominately Catholic and agrarian. The new comers were Greek Orthodox, seamen and merchants. After the Greek War of Independence of 1821, Syros became the maritime, commercial, and cultural center of the Aegean and a place of refuge. Young Nikos Kazantzakis went to school in Syros. Today there are many neoclassical mansions in Ermoupolis and Piskopio as well as in the aristocratic resort of Della Grazia near Finikas.Syros is a wonderful island in the middle of the Aegean. It is not overly developed but yet it manages to provide all the amenities. Get more information