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MykonosTour / Cyclades hotels / Serifos Island Greek Islands Greece

Serifos Island Greek Islands Greece

Serifos Island Cyclades Greek Islands Greece

Serifos Island Cyclades Greek Islands Greece

Seriphos or Serifos is a Greek island in the Aegean Sea, located in the western Cyclades, south of Kythnos and northwest of Siphnos. The area is about 70 km² and with about 1,200 people which suffered a gigantic population loss to around 300. It is located about 170 km (70 nmi) ESE of Piraeus.

When Acrisius was warned by an oracle that his own grandson would kill him, he cast his daughter (Danae) and her infant son Perseus adrift at sea in a wooden chest. It was the island of Seriphos where the vessel had come ashore.

The Miners" Strike 1916 Serifos Island Cyclades Greek Islands Greece

At the turn of the 20th century, Serifos emerged as a major mining site. The shafts which employed large percentages of the local male population were exploited by the German family of the Gromans. The working conditions in the mines scored amongst the poorest in Europe and though the exact number of in-site deaths is unspecified, historians estimate it in the thousands. In response to the appalling conditions and the legendary brutality of Groman"s foremen, in 1916 the miners organized a strike calling for improvement in conditions and an 8 hour workday. The strike was effectively organized by Constintinos Speras, a local anarchosyndicalist with long experience of labour struggles in the mainland. In response to the strike, Groman asked for the help of he Greek authorities which sent a national guard detachment from a nearby island.

Serifos Island Cyclades Greek Islands Greece

Imprisoning Speras and the entire labour leadership, the guard turned its weapons against the striking workers demanding they return to work. When the latter refused, the guard opened fire, killing 4 workers and wounding scores. In response, the bystander wives of the workers took up stones and attacked the forces of repression, killing the entirety of the armed detachment and throwing the bodies in the sea. The freed leadership then proceeded to proclaim the island a workers" council commune, leading to an effort of collective proletarian self-organisation cut short by the arrival of a French warship, whose command made clear to the workers that despite them flying the French flag, the Republic had no jurisdiction to support them against the counterattack of the Greek State. Thus Groman was given once again the control of the mines, having however guaranteed improved working conditions and an 8 hours workday. Speras would return to Athens only to be assassinated years later by Communist Party (KKE) maximalists.

Serifos Island map of Cyclades. Map of Serifos Greek Islands Greece Serifos Island Cyclades Greek Islands Greece.

MykonosTour Page ID: 130

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