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Bread: more than just food!

19 June 2018,

The history of bread in the world It belongs to our everyday life and is one of the things with the longest history. We are talking of course about bread. “Kneaded” with the history of man and identified with food, survival, worship, and enjoyment. But bread is something more than all of these: it was […]

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Kalymnos-sponges

Kalymnos & the last sponge-divers of the Aegean

31 May 2018,

It belongs to the Dodecanese, it is just 20km from the Turkish coast and is known to all the mountain climbers for its mountains. It is none other than beautiful Kalymnos. The “soft gold” of Kalymnos The locals use to say “When God created the earth, He just flung a few rocks in the direction […]

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donkeys

Golden donkeys vs economic crisis!

23 May 2018,

At a time when the only “horses” we know are those of our car engine, it’s hard for someone to remember the humble “donkey”. His scientific name is Equus asinus and it is clearly an animal that up till now is known for its character. For many is a symbol of humility but often – […]

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Superstitions from Greece and the whole word

17 May 2018,

Black cats and open umbrellas that bring bad luck. Βlue beads and garlic against  the evil eye … And much more! … Prejudices and superstitions that have to do with everything that surrounds us. And if you think that all these funny and absurd metaphysics concern only Greece, you are probably wrong. Superstitions are something […]

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Old Athens & its faded history

9 May 2018,

Sitting in one of the many cafes in the shadow of the once holy (now only touristic) hill of the Acropolis, we enjoy a cup of hot coffee, Greek, or one of the European styled we have grown accustomed to in recent years. In the hustle of the modern city, in an environment with old-fashioned […]

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first may

First May in Greece and … what do the donkeys on the rooftops?

30 April 2018,

May Day is one of the few holidays that do not carry any religious meaning. Also, it is not a day connected just to labour rights. Since antiquity it is mainly a day related to the fruitfulness of the earth, the end of the winter and the coming of the summer. That is why it […]

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ai giorgis

“Ai Giorgis” (St George), the Victory-bearing knight of the spring

23 April 2018,

Ai Giorgis, the patron of farmers and breeders April 23 is a special day in Greece. It is the feast day of St. George and the second milestone day in the year, after the feast day of St. Demetrios. It is identified with the coming of spring, the sowing and transfer of the flocks to […]

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How did the months get their names

20 April 2018,

Winter  months Even if January changed many times his name in honour of various emperors, the official name January is of Latin origin. Janus was the Roman guardian of doors and also the god who protected the “new beginnings” or endings. He had two faces, one of which looked forward and the other backward. That […]

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trees, bomen

The cursed trees

28 March 2018,

Are there trees that are victims of people’s superstition? Trees that folk tradition associates with curses? And trees that we are happy to accept their fruits but are not welcome in our garden?   The incriminated fig tree One of the most “incriminated” trees is the fig tree. Many do not want it in their […]

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water

Water as a cultural symbol

20 March 2018,

Why water is of such an importance in some cultures? Most cultures were born and grew up around the water. That is why people understood its power since very early: either when it was giving life, either when it took life back. One of these cultures is Greece. And as it is normal, water and […]

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Greek-black

Flock bells: a source of noise or a communicational code?

14 March 2018,

Bells and the melody of the sheep The sound of the flock is a sound of history. The bells were hung on animals as a sound transmitter but not only. The bell is not a simple tool, but a communication code. Experienced breeders know the sounds so well they can understand when their herd grazes, […]

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“Wear a “March” – The custom and the interpretation behind it.

1 March 2018,

“March” or “Martis” is a very old custom. It is believed to have its roots  in Ancient Greece and more specifically in the Eleusinian Mysteries, where the mystics tied a thread, the Kroki (=thread), to their right hand and their left leg.  Nowadays at the first day of March, parents put a bracelet made of […]

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March and its three plagues

1 March 2018,

March and its first day carry magical power because it was believed that then “the resurrection of nature” takes place. Before the designation of  January 1st, March 1st was the beginning of the year. That is why it was also described as the “great hour of the year“.  At 1st March it was said that […]

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Common Greek fox-proverbs

28 February 2018,

The fox is an animal well-known because of its beauty and cunningness. That’s why there are so many expressions in all languages and countries. In Greece some very common “fox- expressions” are:   1. “Τι κάνει η αλεπού στο παζάρι”; What does the fox look for in the bazaar? A cunning person never risks exposing […]

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Greek Carnival

22 February 2018,

February is the last winter month; everyone is already bored with cold and rain and snow and is looking forward to warmer days. However, everybody loves and welcomes February because he brings the first signs of spring. That is why in Greece people use to say: ” Ο Φλεβάρης κι αν φλεβίσει, καλοκαίρι θα μυρίσει”. Which […]

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Greek Valentines & Carnival …

14 February 2018,

The inhabitants of Amorgos do not wait for Valentine’s Day to express their love. They always  do it with Carnival, thanks to a very old tradition which is called the “Captain” (=Kapetanios). Amorgos: A Valentine comes always in Carnival! Every year, all the young people from 4 different villages gather in the chapel of St. […]

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Playing or organising?

9 February 2018,

We talk about colours, we organise everything and make our space more beautiful. The current project seems to be difficult but Creative Kids like challenges and of course creativity.   Lato Het Griekse CultuurCentrum van Amsterdam – Greek language, Culture and more-

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The “lame” February.

8 February 2018,

WhyFebruary has only 28 days instead of 30 or 31?
The folk version …

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March and his two faces

8 February 2018,

“Keep wood for March,
so not to burn the fence-poles”  is a known Greek proverb.
But what made March so unpredictable?  …

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When the storm is over

7 February 2018,

After last Thursdays’ storm, many people in the Netherlands and elsewhere lost much.
The famous Greek writer Nikos Kazantzakis describes in “Report to El Greco” such an event and the life lesson he then got .

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The unknown Acropolis of the Peloponnese

7 February 2018,

Ancient Oiniades

Once upon a time there was dominative king
who was living in a big city on a hill with his beautiful son …

Mythology

… The name of the king of the castle was Trikardos (=the one who has three hearts). His son, a very handsome young man, had the name Aniliagos (=the one who can’t face the sun), because he should never face the sunlight.

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Lake Ziros, an undiscovered Paradise

7 February 2018,

According to a folk legend two sisters, one rich and one poor, were in dispute with each other because of the plump children of the poor one who were fed with the leftovers of the rich. Eventually a rupture occurred in the relation of two sisters and the poor left her house in order to start a new life far away on the mountains.

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sea-language

The Spinaloga of Pelion & a saint

6 February 2018,

When limited knowledge and prejudice create communities like the one of Spinaloga,
always some visionary people write  their own story….

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