Paros (/ˈpɛərɒs/; Greek: Πάρος; Venetian: Paro) is a Greek island in the central Aegean Sea. One of the Cyclades island group, it lies to the west of Naxos, from which it is separated by a channel about 8 kilometres (5 miles) wide.[2] It lies approximately 150 km (93 miles) south-east of Piraeus. The Municipality of Paros includes numerous uninhabited offshore islets totaling 196.308 square kilometres (75.795 sq mi) of land.[3] Its nearest neighbor is the municipality of Antiparos, which lies to its southwest. In ancient Greece, the city-state of Paros was located on the island.[4]

Historically, Paros was known for its fine white marble, which gave rise to the term "Parian" to describe marble or china of similar qualities.[5] Today, abandoned marble quarries and mines can be found on the island, but Paros is primarily known as a popular tourist spot.


From top left: Parikia, Panagia Ekatontapiliani, the Frankish Castle and a typical Paros street
From top left: Parikia, Panagia Ekatontapiliani, the Frankish Castle and a typical Paros street
Flag of Paros

Seal of Paros

Paros is located in Greece
Location within the region
2011 Dimos Parou
Coordinates: 37°5′N 25°9′E / 37.083°N 25.150°ECoordinates: 37°5′N 25°9′E / 37.083°N 25.150°E
Administrative regionSouth Aegean
Regional unitParos
 • Municipality196.3 km2 (75.8 sq mi)
Highest elevation
724 m (2,375 ft)
Lowest elevation
0 m (0 ft)
 • Municipality
 • Municipality density70/km2 (180/sq mi)
 • Population6,058 (2011)
Time zoneUTC+2 (EET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+3 (EEST)
Postal code
844 00
Area code(s)22840
Vehicle registrationEM


Paros' geographic co-ordinates are 37° N. latitude, and 25° 10' E. longitude.[2] The area is 165 km2 (64 sq mi). Its greatest length from N.E. to S.W. is 21 km (13 mi), and its greatest breadth 16 km (10 mi).[2] The island is of a round, plump-pear shape, formed by a single mountain (724 m (2,375 ft)) sloping evenly down on all sides to a maritime plain, which is broadest on the north-east and south-west sides.[2] The island is composed of marble, though gneiss and mica-schist are to be found in a few places.[2] To the west of Paros lies its smaller sister island Antiparos. At its narrowest, the channel between the two islands is less than 2 km (1 mi) wide. A car-carrying shuttle-ferry operates all day (to and from Pounda, 5 km (3 mi) south of Parikia). In addition a dozen smaller islets surround Paros.

Paros has numerous beaches including Golden Beach (Chrissí Aktí) near Drios on the east coast, at Pounda, Logaras, Piso Livadi, Naousa Bay, Parikia and Agia Irini. The constant strong wind in the strait between Paros and Naxos makes it a favoured windsurfing location.


  • Gaiduronisi – north of Xifara
  • Portes Island – west of the town of Paros
  • Tigani Island – southwest of Paros
  • Drionisi – southeast of Paros



Paros Marpissa tango7174
A windmill in Marpissa is of the traditional Cyclades design.

The story that Paros of Parrhasia colonized the island with Arcadians[6] is an etymological fiction of the type that abounds in Greek legends. Ancient names of the island are said to have been Plateia (or Pactia), Demetrias, Strongyle (meaning round, due to the round shape of the island), Hyria, Hyleessa, Minoa and Cabarnis.[2][7]

The island later received from Athens a colony of Ionians[8] under whom it attained a high degree of prosperity. It sent out colonies to Thasos[9] and Parium on the Hellespont. In the former colony, which was planted in the 15th or 18th Olympiad, the poet Archilochus,[10] a native of Paros, is said to have taken part. As late as 385 BC the Parians, in conjunction with Dionysius of Syracuse, founded a colony on the Illyrian island of Pharos [2](Hvar).[11]

Shortly before the Persian War, Paros seems to have been a dependency of Naxos.[2][12] In the first Greco-Persian War (490 BC), Paros sided with the Persians and sent a trireme to Marathon to support them. In retaliation, the capital was besieged by an Athenian fleet under Miltiades, who demanded a fine of 100 talents.[2] But the town offered a vigorous resistance, and the Athenians were obliged to sail away after a siege of 26 days, during which they had wasted the island.[2] It was at a temple of Demeter Thesmophoros in Paros that Miltiades received the wound from which he died.[2][13] By means of an inscription, Ross was able to identify the site of the temple; it lies, as Herodotus suggests, on a low hill beyond the boundary of the town.[2]

Paros Parikia5 tango7174
Church of Zoodohos Pigi, Parikia

Paros also sided with shahanshah Xerxes I of Persia against Greece in the second Greco-Persian War (480–479 BC), but, after the battle of Artemisium, the Parian contingent remained inactive at Kythnos as they watched the progression of events.[2][14] For their support of the Persians, the islanders were later punished by the Athenian war leader Themistocles, who exacted a heavy fine.[2][15]

Under the Delian League, the Athenian-dominated naval confederacy (477–404 BC), Paros paid the highest tribute of the island members: 30 talents annually, according to the estimate of Olympiodorus (429 BC).[2][16] This implies that Paros was one of the wealthiest islands in the Aegean. Little is known about the constitution of Paros, but inscriptions seem to show that it was modeled on the Athenian democracy, with a boule (senate) at the head of affairs.[2][17] In 410 BC, Athenian general Theramenes discovered that Paros was governed by an oligarchy; he deposed the oligarchy and restored the democracy.[18] Paros was included in the second Athenian confederacy (the Second Athenian League 378–355 BC). In c. 357 BC, along with Chios, it severed its connection with Athens.

From the inscription of Adule, it is understood that the Cyclades, which are presumed to include Paros, were subjected to the Ptolemies, the Hellenistic dynasty (305–30 BC) that ruled Egypt.[2] Paros then became part of the Roman Empire and later of the Byzantine Empire, its Greek-speaking successor state.


In 1204, the soldiers of the Fourth Crusade seized Constantinople and overthrew the Byzantine Empire. Although a residual Byzantine state known as the Empire of Nicaea survived the Crusader onslaught and eventually recovered Constantinople (1261), many of the original Byzantine territories, including Paros, were lost permanently to the crusading powers. Paros became subject to the Duchy of the Archipelago, a fiefdom made up of various Aegean islands ruled by a Venetian duke as nominal vassal of a succession of crusader states. In practice, however, the duchy was always a client state of the Republic of Venice.

Ottoman Era and independence

In 1537, Paros was conquered by the Ottoman Turks and remained under the Ottoman Empire until the Greek War of Independence (1821–1829). During the Russo-Turkish War (1768–1774) in 1770–1775 Naoussa Bay was the home base for the Russian Archipelago Squadron of Count Alexey Orlov. Under the Treaty of Constantinople (1832), Paros became part of the newly independent Kingdom of Greece, the first time the Parians had been ruled by fellow Greeks for over six centuries. At this time, Paros became the home of a heroine of the nationalist movement, Manto Mavrogenous, who had both financed and fought in the war for independence. Her house, near Ekatontapiliani church, is today a historical monument.

On 26 September 2000 the ferry MS Express Samina collided with the Portes islets off the bay of Parikia, killing 82 of those on board.[19]


Panoramic view over the bay of Parikia
Panoramic view over the bay of Parikia

The capital, Parikia, situated on a bay on the north-west side of the island, occupies the site of the ancient capital Paros.[2] Parikía harbour is a major hub for Aegean islands ferries and catamarans, with several sailings each day for Piraeus, the port of Athens, Heraklion, the capital of Crete, and other islands such as Naxos, Ios, Mykonos, and Santorini.

Paros Parikia Hafen 05
Parikia, Paros

In Parikia town, houses are built and decorated in the traditional Cycladic style, with flat roofs, whitewash walls and blue-painted doors and window frames and shutters. Shadowed by luxuriant vines, and surrounded by gardens of oranges and pomegranates,[2] the houses give the town a picturesque aspect. Above the central stretch of the seafront road, are the remains of a medieval castle, built almost entirely of the marble remains[2] of an ancient temple dedicated to Apollo. Similar traces of antiquity, in the shape of bas-reliefs, inscriptions, columns, and so on, are numerous. On a hillside in the southern outskirts of Parikia on the left of the Parikia – Alyki road are the remains of a temple dedicated to Asclepius. In addition, close to the modern harbour, the remains of an ancient cemetery are visible, having been discovered recently during non-archaeological excavations.

Back from the port, around 400 m left of Parikia's main square, is the town's principal church, the Panagia Ekatontapiliani, literally meaning "church of the hundred doors". Its oldest features almost certainly predate the adoption of Christianity as the state religion of the Roman Empire in 391. It is said to have been founded by the mother of the Roman Emperor Constantine the Great (ruled 306–337), Saint Helen, during her pilgrimage to the Holy Land. There are two adjoining chapels, one of very early form, and also a baptistery with a cruciform font.[2]

Parikia town has a small but interesting archaeological museum housing some of the many finds from sites in Paros. The best pieces, however, are in the Athens National Archaeological Museum. The Paros museum contains a fragment of the Parian Chronicle, a remarkable chronology of ancient Greece. Inscribed in marble, its entries give time elapsed between key events from the most distant past (1500 BC) down to 264 BC.[20]

Other settlements

Street of Naousa
Lefkes (Paros) Village View
View of Lefkes village
Traditional street of Lefkes

On the north side of the island is the bay of Naoussa (Naussa) or Agoussa, which provides a safe and spacious harbour. In ancient times it was closed by a chain or boom. Another good harbour is that of Drios on the south-east side, where the Turkish fleet used to anchor on its annual voyage through the Aegean[2] during the period of Ottoman rule over Paros (1537–1832).

The three villages of Dragoulas, Mármara and Tsipidos, situated on an open plain on the eastern side of the island, and rich in remains of antiquity, probably occupy the site of an ancient town.[2] They are known together as the "villages of Kephalos" after the steep and lofty hill of Kephalos.[2] On this hilltop stands the monastery of Agios Antonios (St. Anthony). Around it are the ruins of a medieval castle which belonged in the late Middle Ages to the Venetian noble family of the Venieri.[2] They gallantly but vainly defended it against the Turkish admiral Barbarossa in 1537.

Another settlement on the island Paros is Lefkes (Λεύκες). Lefkes is an inland mountain village 10 km (6 mi) away from Parikia. In the late 19th century, Lefkes was the center of the municipality of Iria which belonged to the Province of Naxos until 1912. The name of the municipality Iria was one of the ancient names of Paros. Lefkes was the capital of the municipality Iria which included the villages Angyria or Ageria, Aliki, Aneratzia, Vounia, Kamari, Campos, Langada, Maltes and Marathi. Iria became Lefkes Community following the law enforcement DNZ/1912 "On Municipalities". At that time, the village managed to achieve great economic development. In the 1970s many residents moved to Athens, Maroussi and Melissia due to urbanization. However, the last few years, tourism presented to be a new source of income for the locals that led to the reconstruction of homes and landscaping for a peaceful and sweet life. Lefkes became part of the municipality of Paros in the Kapodistrias local government reform. In the latest census (2011) the population numbered 545 inhabitants.

Marble quarries

Parian marble quarry
The marble of the Venus de Milo is believed to have been extracted from this 100-metre-long (330 ft) quarry.

Parian marble, which is white and translucent, with a coarse grain and a very beautiful texture, was the chief source of wealth for the island.[2] The celebrated marble quarries lie on the northern side of the mountain anciently known as Marathi (afterwards Capresso), a little below a former convent of St Mina.[2] The marble, which was exported from the 6th century BC onwards, was used by Praxiteles and other great Greek sculptors. It was obtained by means of subterranean quarries driven horizontally or at a descending angle into the rock.[2] The marble thus quarried by lamplight was given the name of Lychnites, Lychneus (from lychnos, a lamp), or Lygdos.[2][21] Several of these tunnels are still to be seen.[2] At the entrance to one of them is a bas-relief dedicated to Pan and the nymphs.[2] Several attempts to work the marble have been made in modern times, but it has not been exported in any great quantities.[2] The major part of the remaining white marble is now state-owned and, like its Pentelic counterpart, is only used for archaeological restorations.

Notable people


See also


  1. ^ a b "Απογραφή Πληθυσμού - Κατοικιών 2011. ΜΟΝΙΜΟΣ Πληθυσμός" (in Greek). Hellenic Statistical Authority.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af Wikisource Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Paros" . Encyclopædia Britannica. 20 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. pp. 860–861.
  3. ^ "Population & housing census 2001 (incl. area and average elevation)" (PDF) (in Greek). National Statistical Service of Greece.
  4. ^ Lund University. Digital Atlas of the Roman Empire.
  5. ^ "Parian – definition of Parian by the Free Online Dictionary, Thesaurus and Encyclopedia". Retrieved 2009-05-06.
  6. ^ Heraclides De rebus publicis 8
  7. ^ Stephanos Byz.
  8. ^ Schol. Dionysius Periegetes 525; Herodian I.171
  9. ^ Thucydides Peloponnesian War IV.104; Strabo Geography 487
  10. ^ Zafeiropouloy F., and A., Agelarakis “Warriors of Paros”, Archaeology 58.1(2005): 30–35.
  11. ^ Diodorus Siculus XV.13
  12. ^ Herodotus Histories V.31
  13. ^ Herodotus op.cit. VI.133–136
  14. ^ Herodotus op.cit. VIII.67
  15. ^ Herodotus op.cit. VIII.112
  16. ^ Olympiodorus 88.4
  17. ^ Corpus Inscriptionum Graecarum 2376–2383; Ross, Inscr. med. II.147, 148
  18. ^ Diodorus Siculus XIII.47
  19. ^ "Ferry Disaster off Paros". Greek Island Hopping. Archived from the original on March 31, 2011. Retrieved April 1, 2011.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link) ()
  20. ^ Inscriptiones Graecae XII.100 seqq.
  21. ^ Pliny the Elder Historia Naturalis XXXVI. 5, 14; Plato Eryxias, 400 D; Athenodorus V.205 f; Diodorus Siculus 2.52
  • Clarke Travels III (London, 1814)
  • de Tournefort, J.R. Voyage du Levant I.232 seqq. (Lyon, 1717)
  • Leake, William Martin, Travels in Northern Greece III.84 seqq. (London, 1835)

External links

2012 Paros beating and rape

The 2012 Paros beating and rape of a teenage girl by an illegal immigrant named Ahmed Waqas (alternate names reported including Ahmet Vaka, Ahmet Bakas, and Ahmet Vakash) attracted widespread attention. Perpetrated on the island of Paros, Greece, the case became notorious at a time of rising concern about the increasing numbers of illegal immigrants arriving in the country. Injuries to the victim, usually referred to in the Greek press solely by her first name "Myrto" (Greek: Μυρτώ), resulted in permanent disability.


Antiparos (Greek: Αντίπαρος; Ancient Greek: Ὠλίαρος, romanized: Oliaros; Latin: Oliarus; Turkish: Andiberre) is a small island in the southern Aegean, at the heart of the Cyclades, which is less than one nautical mile (1.9 km) from Paros, the port to which it is connected with a local ferry. Saliagos island is the most ancient settlement in the Cyclades, and Despotiko, an uninhabited island in the southwest of Antiparos, is a place of great archaeological importance.

The Community of Antiparos was founded in 1914 and was promoted to a municipality in 2010 with the implementation of the Law "Kallikrates", under the principle of "each island a municipality". It occupies an area of 45.182 square km, including the island of Antiparos and Despotiko. It has, according to the 2011 census, 1,211 permanent residents and a density of 27 inhabitants per km². The island's economy is based on tourism, fishing, farming and less on agriculture in the plains. It is known for its white houses, cobbled streets and the flowers that thrive in the yards of the houses. It is a tourist resort in the summer for Greeks and European visitors, as well as land investors from the United States.

The main settlement lies at the northeastern tip of the island, opposite Pounda on the main island of Paros, whence a ferry sails for Antiparos harbour. The historical center is located in the Venetian castle of Antiparos, which is connected through the shopping streets in the picturesque coastal street. Other settlements are the resort of St. George in the southwest edge, Soros and Kampos. Beaches in the wider area of the center are Psaralyki, the Sifneiko, Ag Spiridon and the camping beach. Other beaches include: Soros, Glyfa, Apantima, Monastiria.


For the hummingbird, see Archilochus (genus).

Archilochus (; Greek: Ἀρχίλοχος Arkhilokhos; c. 680 – c. 645 BC) was a Greek lyric poet from the island of Paros in the Archaic period. He is celebrated for his versatile and innovative use of poetic meters, and is the earliest known Greek author to compose almost entirely on the theme of his own emotions and experiences.Alexandrian scholars included him in their canonic list of iambic poets, along with Semonides and Hipponax, yet ancient commentators also numbered him with Tyrtaeus and Callinus as the possible inventor of the elegy. Modern critics often characterize him simply as a lyric poet. Although his work now only survives in fragments, he was revered by the ancient Greeks as one of their most brilliant authors, able to be mentioned in the same breath as Homer and Hesiod, yet he was also censured by them as the archetypal poet of blame—his invectives were even said to have driven his former fiancée and her father to suicide. He presented himself as a man of few illusions either in war or in love, such as in the following elegy, where discretion is seen to be the better part of valour:

Archilochus was much imitated even up to Roman times and three other distinguished poets later claimed to have thrown away their shields—Alcaeus, Anacreon and Horace.


Assyrtiko or Asyrtiko is a white Greek wine grape indigenous to the island of Santorini. Assyrtiko is widely planted in the arid volcanic-ash-rich soil of Santorini and other Aegean islands, such as Paros. It is also found on other scattered regions of Greece such as Chalkidiki.On Santorini, many old vine plantations (over 70 years of age) of Assyrtiko exist, of which many are non-grafted. These plantations have shown resistance to Phylloxera. As the only European grape vine known to be resistant to wine blight, there is speculation that the actual source of this resistance may arise from the volcanic ash in which the vines grow, and not from the vine itself.

Bride buying

Bride-buying, also referred to as bride-purchasing, is the industry or trade of purchasing a bride as a form of property. This enables the bride to be resold or repurchased at the buyer’s discretion. This practice continues to have a firm foothold in parts of the world such as China, India, North Korea, Vietnam and Africa. Described as a form of marriage of convenience, the practice is illegal in many countries.


Despotikó (Greek: Δεσποτικό), anciently, Prepesinthus or Prepesinthos (Ancient Greek: Πρεπέσινθος), is a small, uninhabited Greek island in the Cyclades. It is situated west of the island of Antiparos, and east of the smaller island of Strongyli.

Duchy of the Archipelago

The Duchy of the Archipelago (Italian: Ducato dell'arcipelago, Greek: Δουκάτο του Αρχιπελάγους), or also Duchy of Naxos (Italian: Ducato di Nasso, Greek: Δουκάτο της Νάξου) or Duchy of the Aegean (Italian: Ducato dell'Egeo, Greek: Δουκάτο του Αιγαίου), was a maritime state created by Venetian interests in the Cyclades archipelago in the Aegean Sea, in the aftermath of the Fourth Crusade, centered on the islands of Naxos and Paros. It included all the Cyclades (except Mykonos and Tinos). In 1537 it became a tributary of the Ottoman Empire, and was annexed by the Ottomans in 1579; however, Christian rule survived in islands such as Siphnos (conquered by the Ottomans in 1617) and Tinos (conquered only in 1714).


Euenus (or Evenus) of Paros, (Greek: Εὔηνος ὁ Πάριος), was a 5th-century BC philosopher and poet who was roughly contemporary with Socrates. Euenus is mentioned several times in Plato's Phaedo, Phaedrus (dialogue), and Apology of Socrates. He is quoted in Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics (7.10.1152a32) and Eudemian Ethics (2.7.1223a30). He was apparently, although obscure, well respected, and was never called a Sophist by Socrates, even though he charged a sizeable sum for teaching students.

Giannis Ragousis

Giannis Ragousis (Greek: Γιάννης Ραγκούσης; born 11 December 1965) is a Greek economist and politician of SYRIZA who had previously served in the government of Panhellenic Socialist Movement.

New Paros Airport

Paros National Airport (IATA: PAS, ICAO: LGPA) is the airport serving the island of Paros, Greece, in the Cyclades islands region. The airport is located in the southwestern part of the island, about 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) from the port of Parikia. It replaced the Old Paros National Airport on 25 July 2016.

Old Paros National Airport

Paros National Airport was an airport in Paros, Greece, in the Cyclades islands region. (IATA: PAS, ICAO: LGPA). The airport was located in the southwestern part of the island, about 10 kilometers from the port of Parikia. it was replaced by the New Paros Airport on the 25th July 2016.

Parian marble

For the tablet known as the Parian Marble or Marmor Parium, see Parian Chronicle.

Parian marble is a fine-grained semi translucent pure-white and entirely flawless marble quarried during the classical era on the Greek island of Paros in the Aegean Sea.

It was highly prized by ancient Greeks for making sculptures. Some of the greatest masterpieces of ancient Greek sculpture were carved from Parian marble, including the Medici Venus and the Winged Victory of Samothrace.

The original quarries, which were used from the 6th century BC onwards, can still be seen on the north side of the island on the slopes of its central peak. The Parian's main rival in antiquity was Pentelic marble, which is also flawless white, albeit with a uniform, faint yellow tint that makes it shine with a golden hue under sunlight. Italian Carrara marble is also flawless white with a uniform faint grey tint. It is today mined mostly on the neighbour island of Paros, Naxos, in the mountains near the village of Kinidaros.

Parian ware is an artificial substitute for marble, originally a brand name for a variety of unglazed biscuit porcelain, developed in 1842 in England. This is cast in moulds, typically for small busts and figurines, rather than carved.

Paros (regional unit)

Paros (Greek: Περιφερειακή ενότητα Πάρου) is one of the regional units of Greece. It is part of the region of South Aegean. The regional unit covers the islands of Paros, Antiparos and several smaller islands in the Aegean Sea.

Paroș River

The Paroș is a left tributary of the river Strei in Romania. Its source is in the Retezat Mountains. It flows into the Strei in Ohaba de sub Piatră.


Scopas or Skopas (Ancient Greek: Σκόπας) (c. 395 BC – 350 BC) was an Ancient Greek sculptor and architect most famous for his statue of Meleager, the copper statue of "Aphrodite" and the head of goddess Hygieia, daughter of Asclepius.

Sălașu de Sus

Sălașu de Sus (Hungarian: Felsőszálláspatak) is a commune in Hunedoara County, Romania. It is composed of eleven villages: Coroiești (Korojesd), Mălăiești (Malajesd), Nucșoara (Nuksora), Ohaba de sub Piatră (Kőaljaohába), Paroș (Parospestere), Peștera (Pestere), Râu Alb (Fehérvíz), Râu Mic (Vajdej), Sălașu de Jos (Alsószálláspatak), Sălașu de Sus and Zăvoi (Macesd).

Thrasymedes (mythology)

This page is about Thrasymedes, the participant in the Trojan War. See also Thrasymedes of Paros, the sculptor.In Greek mythology, Thrasymedes (Ancient Greek: Θρασυμήδης) was a prince of Pylos and a participant in the Trojan War.


Thymaridas of Paros (Greek: Θυμαρίδας; c. 400 – c. 350 BCE) was an ancient Greek mathematician and Pythagorean noted for his work on prime numbers and simultaneous linear equations.

Yiannis Parios

Yiannis Parios (Greek: Γιάννης Πάριος) is a Greek vocalist, with a career spanning five decades.

Islands of the Cyclades
Regional unit of Andros
Regional unit of Kalymnos
Regional unit of Karpathos
Regional unit of Kea-Kythnos
Regional unit of Kos
Regional unit of Milos
Regional unit of Mykonos
Regional unit of Naxos
Regional unit of Paros
Regional unit of Rhodes
Regional unit of Syros
Regional unit of Thira
Regional unit of Tinos
Subdivisions of the municipality of Paros
Municipal unit of Paros

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.