A large building, 4.8 N of modern Koroni, which was probably the villa of a rich man or a gymnasium, can be dated in the Early Imperial period. It had three rooms, while a fourth room was situated ca. 30 m farther to the E. In the first room (5.7 m each side) a superb mosaic was discovered, which is now preserved in the Benakeion Museum at Kalamata. The stones of the mosaic vary in size, shape, and color. In the center of a simple sixfold frame was a quadrangular field (3.1 x 3.1 m) divided by plaited borders into a central circle, four semicircles, and four quarter circles, the last in the corners. In the central circle are depicted a Satyr, a panther, and, between them, Dionysos. In the four surrounding semicircles are painted scenes from the amphitheater (bull with gladiator), lion with gladiator, the scene of a tigerhunt, and a hunter (ill-preserved). Between the central circle and the corners are square fields with theatrical masks hung from red ribbons (two male, one female, one lost) while in the NW, SW corners are painted kantharoi surrounded by branches, and in the NE a running female panther. The fourth one (SW), probably occupied by another panther, is entirely lost. The mosaic themes of the other rooms form ornamental compositions.
G. S. Korres, ed.
This text is from: The Princeton encyclopedia of classical sites, Princeton University Press 1976. Cited Nov 2002 from Perseus Project URL below, which contains bibliography & interesting hyperlinks.
Koroni, the Byzantine lady, was one of the most important commercial
and naval Venetian centres of the East. It is built ei a position from which it
dominates both the Messinian Gulf and the area of Eastern Pylia, keeping its nobility
It was founded by refugees from argolian Asini, who were brought to settle the area by the Spartans after the ending of the A' (1st) Messinian War in 740 B.C approximately and named it Asini.
Around the 9th century A.D. the inhabitants of Koroni(Petalidi) moved and settled the top of the rock in order to protect themselves against brigands and pirates and this is where the medieval castle is today.
Later, they spread by the feet of the rock where the ancient city Asini was. Koroni was conquered by the Franks in 1205 while, in 1209 with the Treaty of Sapietza, the Venetians became,until 1500, the lords of the city turning it into the commercial and financial centre of Eastern Europe. In 1500 A.D. it was conquered by the Turks of the sultan Vagiazit B' who dominated it until 1828, except for the time from 1685 to 1715 when the Venetian Morozini tried to give the city its old splendor. The city was liberated from the Turkish rule on the 18th October 1828 by general Maizon's troops. The first commandant was Nikitaras who was a hero of the Greek Revolution of 1821.
Today, it still remains the financial centre of the area, keeping its character as it was created and shaped in the course of history with a lot of the characteristics of an island. It welcomes a lot of visitors every year who seek serenity and tranquillity in the endless blue of the Mediterranean the sun on its wonderful beach of Zaga, Memis and Artakis and the venetian colour which it lent by its medieval castle and narrow streets.
This text is cited March 2003 from the Messenia Prefecture Tourism Promotion Commission URL below, which contains image.
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