Site hosted by Build your free website today!
Lesbos Photographs
Mytilini Fotos

Map and GalleriesDescription
Greek Mainland Image Map
Click on a name to go to that Gallery
Agiaossos Ag. Paraskevi Geras Bay Kallonis Bay
Leimonos Monastery Mitilini Molivos Petra
Road Cuts St. Barbara Beach St. Isidoros Beach Aegean Islands
Sign Guestbook Greek Mainland Greek Islands Photos for Sale
Comments to

Updated 9/23/03

    Lesbos is found in the North Eastern Aegean a few kilometers from the Turkish coastline. It is a rugged, hilly island, which was formed when the land bridge between Greece and Asia Minor sank under the sea at the end of the last Ice age. Having managed to escape the Turkish Rain Shadow, Lesbos is a very lush island with the western half teaming with Pine forests and the eastern half lined with olive groves. The forests reminded me a lot of the Sierra Nevada foothills in California because of all the trees.

    With an "agreeable" climate, an abundant water supply, and lots of land, Lesbos is a very fertile island. The island has taken great pride in its Animal Husbandry and other agricultural industries for centuries. Dating back to archaic times Lesvos has always been a major trade center in the Aegean. In fact the islands fertility earned it the Sultan's Seal during the Ottoman occupation because of its good fortune. Its fertility has also brought occupation from Rome, the Venetians and the Genoese as well as the Turks, all of which have left their mark.

    Entire books have be written about its history but here is the readers digest™ version. One of the first literary mentions of the island date back to the Iliad and Odyssey. It was here that Achilles and Ajax made port and buried Palamides.

   In mythology, the island was first populated by grandchildren of Helios; Mytilene, Methymna, Issa, Antissa, Arisve, Eressos, Kydrolaos, Neandros and Leukippos. From these children the main settlements derived their names. One of the grandaughters was married to Lesvos, son of the Thessalian hero Lapithos and it was from him the island derived its name. A second theory is the word Lesvos means island with lush vegetation. The island has gone through a series of invaders, each one leaving their mark on the town.

    From the archaic time Lesvos was a rich trading and agricultural center and naval power, resisting both the Persians and the Athenian League. The population was apparently well educated producing poets and philosophers. The Romans did manage to control the island where again it was known for its fertility. The Byzantines succeeded the Romans when the empire split. Lesbos was eventuallygiven to Genoa as a dowry and it was a major trading outpost boasting castles in Milivos and Mitilini. It finally fell to the Turks and was one of the few islands that the Turks made a substantial effort at colonizing. The Turks wanted the island for its fertility and was even recognized by the Sultan for its production. There were several revolutionary movements and the Turks were never really welcome on the island. Mitilini was liberated on November 8, 1912 and the island on December 8th, 1912. The island was finally officially given to Greece in 1914 and the Turkish population moved back to Turkey.