Posted on Sep 2, 2021 52
Athens, the capital of Greece, is a marvelous and very interesting place steeped in history. Some of its corners still remember ancient times and the number of architectural attractions is just off the charts. It’s a breathtakingly beautiful place and no wonder millions of tourists visit it each year.
- In Greek, the name of the capital coincides with the name of the goddess Athena, who was considered the patroness of the city named after her.
- Athens is among the oldest cities in the world, but at the same time, despite its age, it is the youngest European capital. It became the capital of modern Greece only in 1834, and the first capital of the modern Greek state was no less interesting city - Nafplion.
- Democracy, as a form of government, appeared here. It happened about three thousand years ago, when the art of public speaking developed and the institution of elections appeared.
- Over 4.5 million people live here, the population density reaches 7500 people per 1 km ².
- About 40% of the population of Greece live in Athens.
- It is one of the few cities where the Olympic Games have been held more than once - in 1896 and 2004.
- Before Athens was proclaimed the capital of Greece, the local population was barely 5,000 people. Over the past almost two centuries, it has grown by hundreds of times.
- Athens got its name after its patroness, the goddess Athena, but not everyone knows that her rival for the right to be the city’s patron was Poseidon. According to legend, the two deities were to give a gift to the citizens: Athena gave the citizens an olive tree and Poseidon gave them water. The inhabitants almost unanimously decided that water was more important, but when they tasted it turned out to be salty and unsuitable for eating or watering, so Athena won the dispute and became the eternal patroness of the Greek capital.
- At night, special workers scatter stones near the Parthenon, so that tourists could take away “pieces” of the ancient structure. If not for such measures, Parthenon would have long ago been taken for souvenirs. Similarly, the Rome authorities are doing in the case of the Colosseum.
- The first Museum of Contemporary Art appeared here only in 2000, and until 2014 it did not even have its own building.
- One of the twin cities of Athens is Kiev, the capital of Ukraine.
- The first modern Olympics were held in Athens in 1896. They were attended by athletes from 14 countries.
- One of the most famous local attractions is the Acropolis in Athens. It was built over 2000 years ago.
- Athens is one of the oldest cities in the world, with a history of over 3400 years. And for the first time, ancient people showed up here somewhere between 7 and 11 millennia BC.
- Traditionally, the parade of nations at the opening ceremony of each Olympics begins with the delegation of Greece, as the founding country of the Olympic Games, and ends with the delegation of the country where the Games are held. In 2004, when the Olympics were held in Athens, the collision was solved this way: the parade was opened by one Greek flag bearer, while the rest of the Greek team walked at the end.
- In 1821, the Greeks’ struggle for independence from the Ottoman Empire began. In one battle, the Greeks laid siege to the Acropolis in Athens. When the Turks ran out of ammunition, they opened up the columns of the Parthenon, remove the lead fasteners from there and cut them into bullets. Learning of this, the Greeks themselves sent the enemy a shipment of lead, just to prevent the destruction of the monument.
- Athens is now one of the world’s major centers for archaeological research.
- During the laying of tunnels for the construction of the Athens Metro, about 50 thousand ancient artifacts were found. Some of them were sent to museums, and some were used to decorate the Athens metro stations.
- It was in this city that such a sports discipline as the marathon race first appeared.
- There are 148 theaters in Athens. It is more than in any other city in the world.
- he inhabitants of Athens have experienced almost all known forms of government: monarchy, democratic state, socialism, capitalism and even communism in their centuries-long history.
- In ancient Greece, Athens was famous for its sandals. They are popular here to this day, and not just as a souvenir. The most expensive and authentic models are sewn only by hand.
- Once there was recorded a temperature of +48 degrees Celsius. That’s more than in any other city in Europe.
- Most historians agree that the world’s first theater appeared in Athens.
- In 1985, Athens was awarded the title of European Capital of Culture, which is a rolling title. It was the Greek capital that became the first city to receive this status. Every year, a new city is chosen.