Epirotic Federation of Oceania (Australia) Inc.
19-21 Ferguson Street
Abbotsford VIC 3067
AUSTRALIA
 

Federation

      About Us

      Epirotic History

Victoria Clubs

      Dodoni

      Panepirotic

New South Wales Club

      Enosis

South Australia Club

      O Pyrros



Epirotic History 

Epirotan History 

Pyrros (Pyrrhus) King of Epirus - born 319/31/BC

Pyrros was the sone of Aeacides of Epirus and Phthia and second cousin of Alexander the Great.  He was believed to be the descendant of Achilles.  As ruling Monarch, Pyrros was not impulsive (as is suggested).  Before an important decision, he would consult oracles and hold discussions with his advisers. He was not narrow minded nor was his interests strictly limited to the military.  Twice conquering Roman battles, he took the initiative to open negotiations.  He wanted to continue and develop a great Greek Empire of the West, united under his Rule-Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, Magna Graecia and Sicily, and strengthening them against the Romans and Carthaginaians.  Pyrros established the Attic coinage standard.  This system was the only one capable of unifyung mints.  He left room for local standards and local exchanges.  Hannibal ranked Pyrros as the second greatest commander of the world after Alexander the Great.

Byzantine Period

During the Byzantine period, Epirus developed and transfored administrative reforms.  The basic structures of the administrative reforms were economic and social.  With the increasing dominance of Christianity, new religious and ethical ideas prevailed.  There were the constructions of numerous basilicas within the cities and countryside.  The architectural landscape had been transformed.  Roads, cities and fortresses were built (via Egnatia - from Dyrrachion to Avlona to appollonia and to Constantinople and to the west - Brunsdisium Italy).  Art had flourished such as painting, mosaics, frescoes, sculpture, metal work and ceramics.  The horses from Epirus were considered among the best in the Mediterranean region, since antiquity.  After the capture of Constantinople by the Crusaders (April 1204), Epirus became independent and was called the Despotate of Epirus. 

The liberation of Ioannina

The allied Balkan States declared War on Turkey on 4 October 1912.  After 483 years of oppression, injustices, atrocities and attempted assimilation or obliteration, the time had come for the Epirotan to take another stand in their beliefs and values and to be free and unify Greece.  The battle began under the expert command of Lieutenant-General Constantine Sapountzakis and the Greek Army.  The Prime Minister Eleutherios Venizelos arrived in Epirus to form a personal view of the situation at the front.  The main battle was at Bizani and surroudning areas were liberated slowly which caused difficulties for the Turkish Army.

On 21 February 1913, Esat Pasha informed the Metropolitan Gervasios and the Consuls of the Surrender and Ceasefire at Ioannina.  Present at the Mediation with Crown Prince Constantine were Metropolitan Gervasios of Ioannina, Reuf Bey, Esat's nephew, Talaat Bey and the Consuls.  On 21 February 1913, the Greek Army entered Ioannina in triumph.

Diaspora

During the 1940's, Epirus suffered extreme hardship.  During WWII, Epirotans faced Italian and German invasions with many casualties recorded.  During this decade, 3 civil wars between natinalists and socialists broke out in Greece.  Given that the socialists based their operations from Northern Epirus, the ferocity of these civil wars were brought upon the region of Epirus, further compounding the suffering of Epirotans.

Once war was over, Epirotans, like all Greeks, went through a process of healing and rebuilding.  However, a generation of youth emerged, and the Greek economy was unable to sustain this generation and young Greeks began to migrate to other countries to seek a better future (Diaspora).  Epirotan Greeks migrated to countries including Germany, South Africa, Australia, and North America.  Many migrants have settled in their new countries, spreading throughout the world their Epirotan Culture.  It is estimated that in the late 1950's and early 60's, some 14,000 Epirotans migrated to Sydney.  Sydney, like many other cities throughout the world now have third generation Greeks with Epirotan Heritage.

( text courtesy http://www.epirotan.com.au )