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Listed 2 sub titles with search on: Sights for destination: "FRANGOKASTELLO Castle SFAKIA".


Sights (2)

Castles, fortresses & fortifications

Frangocastello of Sfakia

Tel: +30 28210 56119, 53033, Fax: +30 28210 56118

  The Venetian fortress was erected by the rulers of the island in 1371, in order to protect the small bay from the pirates. However it was barely used for defensive purposes during the Venetian era and on the eve of the Turkish attack, it was actually abandoned. In 1828 the Cretan rebels occupied the fortress and during the siege that followed, its towers were destroyed.
  The fortified castle is a typical example of the Venetian defence architecture with a rectangular shape with towers on each side. Over the gate, one sees a relief with the Lion of St Marcus and the Venetian crowns. The buildings in the interior, as well as the battlements, were constructed during the ottoman occupation; at the same time many repairs were carried out. Underneath the fortress, there are the ruins of the church of St Marcus.
  According to tradition, during the second half of May and with a specific weather, shadows of the armed cretan warriors, who lost their lives there, seem to march towards the fortress. The locals call them "Drosoulites". Near the fortress, is the church of St Niketas of 1371, where there are traces of an Early Christian basilica. The works of restoration and consolidation were carried out by the 13th Ephorate οf Byzantine Antiquities.


The Venetian Fort of Frangokastello

  The exterior of the Venetian fortress (1371) has survived in excellent condition although the interior is in ruins. It has a square design with a tower at each corner. Above the gate is the emblem of Venice, the lion of St. Mark. The Venetians built the castle to deter pirate raids and to bring some order to this area. The castle is associated with some fierce battles. In 1828, a small band of Greeks, headed by Hatzi Michali Daliani, occupied the castle in an attempt to spread the War of Independence to Crete. He and his small band of rebels were massacred by the much larger Turkish force on the plain of Frangokastello. Their martyrdom became the subject of heroic legends and songs. The local legend says that on or around the anniversary of this battle (17 May), you can see the ghosts of Daliani and his army. They appear in the early morning, marching from the castle. These spirits are called "dhrosoulites" or "dew shadows" by the locals.

This text is cited Nov 2002 from the Crete TOURnet URL below, which contains images.


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