History of Agia Galini village


The current village of Agia Galini is built on the ancient Minoan city Sulia which was one of the hundred cities of Crete described by Homer. There was a temple dedicated to the goddess Artemis and it was a place of worship. The history of Soulia continued until the 7th century when it was destroyed by pirates. Remnants of this city and temple have been found, such as buildings, tombs, marbles and two granite columns that adorn until today the village's church.

The bay of Agia Galini was suitable anchorage for ships , and used in the revolutions of 1821 and 1866 for unloading munitions . Later because it was the nearest port to the fertile and oil producing region of Ampadia and Melampes,the port was used for loading oil to ships , but the village was still uninhabited. The settlement was founded in 1884, commercial buildings , oil warehouses and some residences were built. Over the years the commercial traffic and export of oil increased significantly and therefore Customs were founded. After a few years ( 1890 ) there was a permanent settlement of about 20 people.

Name origins

The name of Agia Galini , according to tradition , is due to the Empress Eudocia of Byzantium (or Athinais daughter Athenian philosopher Leontius ), on the journey of exile to Africa the ship faced a big storm not far from the ancient city of Soulia. Asking for the help of Mary ,the Empress Eudocia suggested the crew to approach the shore , and made ​​a vow that she would build a church dedicated to the Virgin Mary if they could find shelter. Indeed the ship moored safely to the naturally sheltered beach of the village , and the Empress began to build the temple. The temple was named "Holy Virgin of serenity" (γαλήνη means serenity) and after years became Agia Galini(Saint Serenity). This Byzantine church of Panagia(Holy Virgin) -which is of rare architecture- is still used as the cemetery's church.

Source: http://www.agios-vasilios.gr/template/lorem-ipsum/template-articles/history.html