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Re-enactment of Battle of Lepanto held October 8, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Arts Events Greece, Greek Culture Heritage.
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A scene from the re-enactment of the 1571 Battle of Lepanto at the medieval fortress of the coastal town of Nafpaktos, in southwest Greece, on Sunday, October 7, 2007.

lepanto_battle.jpg  A massive and multi-national re-enactment of the 1571 sea battle of Lepanto, which dashed hopes for Ottoman domination of the Mediterranean once and for all, occurred in the coastal town of Nafpaktos over the weekend, as October 7 marked the 436th anniversary of the decisive battle.

Delegations from Venice, Malta, Croatia and Austria, many of whose members were decked out in uniforms and regalia reminiscent of the era, participated in a variety of anniversary events. Among others, a 14-metre-long gondola, replete with knights aboard, along with choirs and various civic groups filled the fortress town, in southwestern Greece on the Patras Gulf, with their presence and performances.

“Within the new prospect of cooperation and peaceful cohabitation in the European Union, Nafpaktos Municipality establishes the multicultural character of these anniversary’s events, ones aimed at an alliance of peoples. Our aim is for the anniversary events to extend beyond Greece’s borders and to become a product of cooperation between the citizens and the cultural associations of the nations which took part in this naval battle,” Nafpaktos Mayor Thanassis Papathanassis stressed.

Italian ambassador to Greece, Gianpaolo Scarante, himself a native of Venice, announced that the Mayor of Nafpaktos will be invited next May to Venice’s well-known “Marriage to the Sea” (Festa della Sensa) festival. Ambassador Scarante also noted that the Venice regional authority will promote a programme, in cooperation with Greece, Spain Malta and Austria, for the collection of data to preserve the historical memory of the Battle of Lepanto.

The battle marked a significant victory for an allied Christian fleet, the Holy League, a coalition made up of the Republic of Venice, the Papacy, Spain, Naples, Sicily, Sardinia, the Republic of Genoa, the Duchy of Savoy, the Malta-based Knights Hospitaller and others, which thoroughly defeated a fleet of Ottoman war galleys.

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