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The Cyclades Islands

Around the sacred island of Phoetus Apollo, Dilos, in the very middle of the Aegean Archipelagos, the islands of the Cyclades gush up filled with sun and light. Large and small, tame and wild, serene and vigilant, fertile and rocky, they are all children of the white and the blue. And whoever is acquainted with them once, must not know of beauty, if one doesn't become their slave. If one doesn't feel their grace overflow deep in his soul with laughter, waves and wind.

Because, the Cyclades are light. Above everything, light. "An endless summer, as if until now he gilds them "Lord Byron chants amazed. A light lavishly transparent, pure gold and white. Light of the sun and of the clouds, of the rock and of the mastic trees, of the beach and of the bottoms, of the stars and of the night, of the temples and of the castle, of the houses "at the neighbouring of the glaucous", of the girls who laugh and of the sea-gulls who play with the reefs at sunset.

In such a light, only light could be born. Glowing still through its scattered remnants, their ancient and most beautiful civilization shines. It was the cradle from which all the following great Greek civilizations got their life and power. In all its phases, the Cycladean Civilization, in its glory and in its decline, winner and defeated, with adventures or without, it was human and Greek. With moderation, sense, not in the least supernatural but harmonically connected with its surrounding beauty and nature.

All the creations emit this sense. Ancient temples and scattered statues, Kouros and idols, monasteries and castle, churches and deserted churches, stone paved narrow street and squares, old noble houses "archontika" and humble rustic ones, arched arcades and fountains, yards and alleys, ruins and deserted mills. All together and dispersed children of yesterday and to day, call us forth in their spell.

They scream, silent witnesses but at the same time eloquent, of peoples' passage (their imprint and their continuity) alike deep inside, Greeks of beauty and measure. Because, even today's Cycladeans always continue the tradition of their ancestors. Famous craftsmen of the scalpel and the paint-brush, verse, great scientists and wise men, navigators and skippers, artists and simple common people, all follow the same road with the older, giving their own fight for culture and man.

They preserve many of their old customs and live them with a religious faith. Songs of love, expatriation, death, faith, spontaneously spring from their soul, alike clear cool spring water, alike the sea breeze.

Every island, a special note. And all together an ancient, present and eternal melody. Andros with the springs and the greenery, Tinos the pious shrine of the Holy Virgin, Delos the birthplace of Apollo, Thira of volcanoes and wine, the cheerful los, the inaccessible Amorgos of the poets, Sifnos of ceramic art and Gripari, Paros of the famous Arhilohos and marble, the unexpected Folegandros, the humble Sikinos, Milos of the catacombs, Naxos of dancing and music, the reclusive Anafi, the sail experienced Kithnos, the serious Kea. All branches of the same tree. A tree where inside it flow the juices of the most fertile coexistence.

The natural beauty, the minds' flight, the spiritual refinement. The Cycladean beauty enchanted many creators of the paintbrush and the speech, they were inspired and they sang for it. Among them. "Worthy" the poet of the Aegean. Elitis in "Worthy Is" celebrates and is himself with his eternal verse.

Worthy is the wooden table
the yellow wine with the spot of the sun
the waters' games on the ceiling
at the corner the leaf tree which officiates

The stones and the waves hand - in - hand
a sole which accumulated wisdom in the sand
A cicada which convinced thousands of other ones
the conscience all lit like summer

THE ISLANDS with the minimum and the soot
the islands with the vertebra of some Zeus
the islands with the deserted shipyards
the islands with the potable azure volcanoes.

>> Cyclades Islands Amorgos, Anafi, Andros, Antiparos, Delos, Folegandros, Ios, Kea, Kimolos, Kithnos, Koufonisia, Milos, Mykonos, Naxos, Paros, Santorini, Serifos, Sifnos, Sikinos, Syros, Tinos.

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