The contemporary town has 7000 inhabitants and it’s built on the right
bank of the river Pamisos where «Makaria Ge» used to be in antiquity. The surrouniding
area has been inhabited since the Protohellenic Era (2600-2200 B.C), as the findings
in the area Mexa of Bouka prove. It was inhabited in the Late Hellenic Era (1580-1120
B.C) too as the chambered tombs which are dug in the peremeter of the hill, prove.
In 900 A.D. it is built by the Melissinous where «Panigyristra» is today. The
flooded river of Pamisos around Melissopyrgos gives the impression of an island
which gives Messini its nickname; «Nisi» (=island).
This nickname first appears in texts written during the Frank domination (1205-1430) and it’s kept until today. During the french chronicle of Moreas, «Nisi» is mentioned as the favourite place of the legendary Frank-Greek the Velleardouini Princess Isabella, the owner of Morias, known as Princess Izambo.
In 1770, the last action of the Orlof revolutionary actions is recorded. The remnants of Melissopyrgos are blown up and the last fighters, under the leadership of Yiannis (John) Mavromichalis, like George Flessas and John Kolokotronis, grandfathers of the Heroes of the 1821 Revolution Papaflessas and Kolokotronis, met a tragic but heroic death.
During the Revolution in 1821, Nisi participates with Kalamata, shares the expenses for the organisation and the training of the army, while in 1825, it will be completely destroyed by Ibrahem Pasha. In 1833, the Episcopal of Messini is founded and in 1867 the city is officially named «Messini».
The contemporary city bases its economy on agriculture. Oil, raisins, potatoes and early vegetables are grown, while the area is rapidly developing in terms of tourism with the creation of infrastructure at the beaches of «Bouka», Analipsi and Velika.
This extract is cited March 2003 from the Messenia Prefecture Tourism Promotion Commission URL below, which contains image.
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