Writers International Edition

Despena Dalmaris

MORPHEUS: The God of Dreams

The ancient Greeks expressed their view of the origin and nature of the world through their mythology. It referred to the lives and activities of the deities, heroes, and mythological creatures as well as the origins and significance of the ancient Greeks’ cult and ritual practices.

Morpheus (Greek: Μορφέας) is one such mythological figure. His name means ‘Fashioner’, from the Greek ‘μορφή’, meaning ‘form, shape’. He is the god of sleep and dreams; a god associated with a third of our life. He appears in dreams in human form bearing messages from the gods as well as appearing to the Olympian gods. He is the son of Hypnos (Greek: Ύπνος – God of Sleep) and Pasithea (Greek: – Goddess of relaxation and rest). His grandmother was Nyx (Greek: Νυξ) the fearsome deity of Night. His uncle was Thanatos (Greek: Θάνατος), the god of death. Only the Olympian Gods could visit Morpheus and his family in the land of dreams.

Morpheus painted by Jean Bernard Restout (Paris – 1771)

His brothers were Icelus (meaning ‘like’), who made the dreams seem real; Phobetor was responsible for phobic or terrifying dreams, and Phantasus created fantastic and surreal dreams. Morpheus was their leader, and he alone was able to oversee the dreams of Gods, kings, and heroes. This is what set him apart from his brothers. They emerged each night like a flock of bats from Erebos, their cavernous home, the land of eternal darkness in the West, where the sun sets (Greek: Δύση). They would pass through two gates: one made of horn and the other of ivory. Morpheus would pass through the gate made of horn, which represented true or divine dreams. His brothers would pass through the ivory gate, which represented dreams without true meaning. These gates were guarded by two monsters to prevent anyone from entering. Beyond the gates were the River of Forgetfulness and the River of Oblivion.

Morpheus was a winged being. He had two wings on his back, which allowed him to travel noiselessly great distances and at great speed. He is also depicted with a winged ear, symbolizing his listening to, and delivering of dreams. He listens through his normal ear and uses his winged ear to deliver the messages to the receiver, whether it be the Gods or mortals. The Greek gods used him as their messenger to appear in the dreams of the mortals and in this way, to liberate the desires, hopes, and imaginations of the sleeper. However, dreams can also portray false realities, and so betray the receiver to act in an unforeseeable way.

Morpheus is used in such a way in Homer’s Iliad to deliver a message from Zeus to King Agamemnon, king of Mycenae and the leader of the Greek army in the war against Troy. This false dream was sent by Zeus to Agamemnon in the guise of Nestor, a trusted comrade, to persuade him that if he launched a full-scale assault on Troy, he would be successful. Zeus is misleading Agamemnon because he owes a favour to Achille’s mother, the goddess Thetis, who supports Troy and wants the defeat of the Greeks, but also wants to show the importance of Achilles participation in the war. After several days of fighting, the Achaeans are pushed back to their fortifications around their ships. The defeat of the Greek forces wanted to show Agamemnon that he was not the greatest of leaders and that it was Achilles who deserves to be the leader. Achilles had not taken part in this attack due to the disagreement between Agamemnon and Achilles over Briseis, a Trojan captive. Achilles was forced to give her to Agamemnon as compensation for the freeing of Chryseis, the daughter of one of Apollo’s priests, who had been taken as a war prize by Agamemnon.

Briseis – Wall painting: Achille’s surrender of Briseis to
Agamemnon from the house of the tragic poet in Pompei –
Fresco 1st c. A.D. now in the National Archaeological Museum, Naples

The reference to Morpheus to express the state of dreaming and as a messenger has been used by many poets from antiquity up to the present times. One such poet is Ovid, the Roman poet (43 BC – 17/18 AD), who lived during the reign of the emperor Augustus. He uses Morpheus in his poetic work Metamorphoses to tell the story of Ceyx and his wife Alcyone, the king and queen of Trachis in Thessaly, who were transformed into birds after provoking the wrath of Zeus. Morpheus appears to Alcyone in a dream as her husband Ceyx to tell her of his death.
Besides works of literature, there are many works of art as well as sculptures showing Morpheus in a state of sleep and as a messenger of the gods. The word ‘Morpheus’ is also used in figurative speech in sayings such as in the arms of Morpheus to express the idea of someone sleeping deeply. We also have the medical term ‘morphine’, which is connected to the poppy seeds that Morpheus had in his cave and is used for those in severe pain. Poppies have also been used to treat insomnia due to their hypnotic properties. In the film world, Morpheus is one of the main characters in the Matrix films.

Next time you dream, think as to whether Morpheus had anything to do with it!!

Despena Dalmaris



The Byzantine Empire was the continuation of the Roman Empire after the split in power and is therefore also referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire or Byzantium. Byzantium (Ancient Greek: Βυζάντιον) was an ancient Greek city colonized by the Greeks from Megara in the 7th century BC. It was named Constantinople in honour of the Emperor Constantine the Great (306-337 AD), who was the first to convert to Christianity in 312 A.D putting the Empire on the road towards Christianization. In 381, during the reign of Theodosius I, it became the official state religion of the Eastern Roman Empire turning Constantinople into a thriving religious center. It was the capital of the thousand-year existence of the Byzantine Empire, which was not only primarily Greek-speaking, but also influenced by Greek culture, philosophy and traditions until its conquest by the Ottoman Empire in 1453 AD.

Emperor Constantine the Great
Emperor Constantine the Great

Constantinople was chosen to be the capital of the Byzantine Empire as it was the crossing point between the continents of Europe, Asia and later Africa as well as playing an important role in commerce, culture, diplomacy, and strategy. It was the centre of the Greek world, and the Greek language was the lingua franca at that time. It was the language in which the New Testament was written as well as being the primary liturgical language of the church. Therefore, Constantinople is generally considered to be the ‘cradle of Orthodox Christian civilization’. From the mid-5th century to the early 13th century, Constantinople was the largest and the wealthiest city in Europe. The Church of the Holy Wisdom (Hagia Sophia – Greek: Αγία Σοφία) in the 530s was built under Emperor Justinian I. It is considered the epitome of Byzantine architecture and has influenced the architecture of not only the churches of the Christian world, but also the Ottoman mosques.

The Great Schism of 1054 divided the Christian church into two major branches: the Western Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church. This came about due to a complex mixture of religious disagreements and political conflicts. For example, whether it was acceptable to use unleavened bread for communion (the west supported the practice, the east did not). Another point was whether clerics should remain celibate. The west believed that they should, whereas the east did not. The political conflict also had to do with who was the religious leader. Rome felt that the pope should have authority over the patriarch in Constantinople. However, Constantinople disagreed. Although the two churches have never reunited, the two branches of Christianity have come to terms with each other.

Emperor Justinian I
Emperor Justinian I

The Crusades that took part in the Middle East to recover Jerusalem and its surrounding area from Islamic rule, would prove to be the Trojan Horse for the eventual downfall of the Byzantine Empire. These series of religious wars were supported and often directed by the Latin Church in Rome between 1095 and 1291.

The First Crusade, which resulted in the recovery of Jerusalem in 1099 was followed by many more. However, the sacking of Constantinople in April 1204 marked the culmination of the Fourth Crusade. After the capture of the city, which the Crusader armies looted and destroyed a large part of, Balwin of Flanders was crowned Emperor Baldwin I of Constantinople in Hagia Sophia.

Icon painted in Byzantine or Orthodox                                                                                                                    style depicting the Virgin Mary and Jesus
Icon painted in Byzantine or Orthodox style depicting the Virgin Mary and Jesus

Most of the Byzantine Empire’s territories were divided up among the Crusaders. However, several small independent states were established by the Byzantine aristocrats, one of them being the Empire of Nicaea, which eventually recaptured Constantinople in 1261 and proclaimed the reinstatement of the Empire. Unfortunately, the restored Empire never managed to reclaim its former territorial or economic strength. Eventually, it fell to the rising Ottoman Empire on 29 May 1453 after a siege of 53 days. This outcome wounded the relationship between the Catholic and Orthodox churches for many centuries and it is only in modern times that they have been reconciled.

Despena Dalmaris






Christmas is celebrated to remember the birth of Jesus Christ. The name ‘Christmas’ comes from the ‘Mass of Christ’. It is a Mass service where Christians remember that Jesus died and then came back to life. The ‘Christ-Mass’ service was the only one that was allowed to take place after sunset (and before sunrise the next day), so people had it at midnight. Therefore, ‘Christ-Mass’ has been shortened to ‘Christmas’.

December 25th corresponds to the date of the winter solstice and is exactly nine months after the Annunciation of the birth of Christ to Mary by Archangel Gabriel, and the date of the spring equinox. Most Christians celebrate on December 25 in the Gregorian calendar, but a part of the Eastern Orthodox Churches celebrate with the older Julian calendar, which means that Christmas is celebrated on January 7.
Each country has its own unique way of celebrating this festive season. Some of the traditions in Greece are very old even though not all are practiced in the cities.

As Greece is a sea-fairing country, it was customary in many households on the islands and on the coast to decorate a wooden ship, which symbolizes the new direction that the birth of Jesus gives to human life. It was gradually replaced by the Christmas tree with the reign of Otto I, the first king of Greece in 1832. Recently, more people and municipalities are bringing back the custom of decorating a ship in place of the Christmas tree.

Carols, which are folk songs of greeting and praise with Byzantine roots, are sung on Christmas Eve, New Year’s Eve, and Epiphany. Children go from house to house accompanied by the traditional instrument of the triangle singing the carols and today instead of sweets they are given money.

The making of the Christopsomo (The Bread of Christ) on Christmas Eve is another custom. The main feature is the decorating of the bread with the cross and other Christian symbols.

The Christoxylo (Christmas wood) is burned throughout the festivities in the countryside areas of Greece. It burns from Christmas Eve until Epiphany. This is to stop the Goblins from creating havoc as they are only afraid of fire until, with the sprinkling of the Holy Water on Epiphany Day, they are forced to return to the depths of the Earth.

Santa Claus comes on New Year’s Eve instead of Christmas Day. This is the time when the Greek people exchange gifts. It is the feast of Saint Basil where the vasilopita, ‘the cake of Vasilios’ is baked with a coin inside. Saint Basil came from Cappadocia in Asia Minor and would help the poor people in his area. Whoever has the coin in his piece, will have luck throughout the year.

Lastly, on New Year’s morning, when the family returns from church, the man of the house breaks the pomegranate on the threshold and then enters the house with his right foot. This symbolizes health, happiness, and wealth all year round.

Besides the Christmas Kalanta that are sung by groups of children from house to house, many poems with the theme of the birth of Jesus Christ have been written by well-known Greek poets. One such poem is the following written by Kostis Palamas (1859-1943), the Patriarch of Modern Greek poetry and author of the Olympic Anthem. He was a leading figure in the literary world of the 1880s. He explores the post-classical and post-Byzantine Greek world. Palamas’ strong religious and liturgical connotations, unifies spiritual, philosophical, and historic notions of Hellenism. The divine birth is a recurring theme in Palamas’ poetry, a spiritual celebration of redemption and humility. His poem ‘Christmas’ is well-known and much loved.


What light, what colour and beauty sprinkle the stars,
where to the Manger of Christ, the Magi have been brought.
A miracle in which we all long to be a part of,
even if only a straw in the stable,
when Christ opened his eyes towards the sun.
To see his first glance and his smile,
the crown of rays around his forehead.
Let me shine from his glow, just like a diamond,
and from his divine breath to become a flower.
Το smell of fragrances from scents
that were placed at His feet, when worshipped by the Magi.

Oh, oh, Christmas at the family table,
that goes hand in hand with appetite and plays with love.
The glasses tinkle sweetly, the plates sparkle,
around is foolish old age and hard-working youth.
The turkey in the middle is hot and smelling good,
Mother gives advice and scatters happiness … Nativity of Jesus by Botticelli
And look, grandfather begins a tireless speech
about Christmas, a well-known and ancient story…

To be in the stable a piece of straw, a poor piece,
at the time when Christ opens his eyes, to the first rays of the sun.

Despena Dalmaris


The Greek refugees that came from Asia Minor and settled in Greece often named their new townships after their places of origin. This is the case of Palaia Phocaea, the ancient Greek city on the Aegean coast of today’s Turkey. They left their ancestral homes and sought refuge in Motherland Greece after the disintegration of the Ottoman Empire, the end of World War I, and the rise of Kemal Atartouk, which led to the genocide of the Christian populations as well as the burning of Smyrna in September 1922. 

Palaia Phocaea takes its name from Phocaea, an ancient Greek city of Ionia known today as Asia Minor. The Ionians (Greek: Ίωνες) who colonized the area were one of the four major tribes that the Greeks were divided into during the ancient period. The other three were the Dorians, the Aeolians and the Achaeans. Phocaea’s harbours allowed it to develop a thriving seafaring economy, which greatly influenced its culture. 

Excavations indicate that the area had been settled from around 9th century BC when the first Phocaeans arrived there from Phocis, an ancient region in the central part of Greece, which included Delphi, the seat of the oracle Pythia. According to Herodotus (Greek: Ηρόδοτος), the ancient Greek historian and geographer, the Phocaeans were the first Greeks to make long sea-voyages. They discovered the coasts of the Adriatic Sea, the Tyrrhenian Sea (off the coast of Italy) and travelled as far as Spain. Although they travelled extensively throughout the Mediterranean Sea and up through the Dardanelles, the major colonies they founded were in the west. These included Alalia on the island of Corsica, Emporiae and Rhoda on the Catalonian coast of Spain, and Marseille (Greek: Μασσαλία) on the Mediterranean coast of France around 600 BC. 

The history of Phocaea is a long and turbulent one, from the Greco-Persian conflict in 546 BC through to Roman and Byzantine rule when it was given to Benedetto Zaccaria, the Genoese ambassador to Byzantium as a hereditary lordship in 1275. It remained a Genoese colony until it was taken by the Turks in 1455. Constantinople fell to Sultan Mehmed II on May 29, 1453. 

Phocaea was the location of the first massacre (Greek: Η Σφαγή της Φώκαιας) in June 1914 as part of the ethnic cleansing policies of the Ottoman Empire, which included exile, massacre, and deportations. It was carried out by irregular Turkish bands called ‘chettes’, who were responsible for the atrocities against Christian Orthodox Armenians, Greeks, and Assyrians during the 1910s and 1920s.

The documentation and photographs of the French engineer and archaeologist Felix Sartiaux (1876-1944) have helped to bring these atrocities to light as they describe the sequence of events before and during the massacre. He and his three assistants took measures to help the Greek population by hoisting French flags on their homes and thus provided shelter for the refugees. Around 700-800 people were saved from the attacks and were later evacuated by boats to the island of Lesvos. There was sympathy throughout Europe for the victims of Phocaea, especially in France. The people of Marseille raised a sum of 20,000 French francs to support the refugees. 

The refugees returned to Phocaea in 1919 when it appeared that the Greek Army and their allies were succeeding in reclaiming territories in Asia Minor. However, their return was short-lived because of the defeat of the Greeks in the Battle of Sakarya, just outside Ankara. This led to the second forced expulsion from their ancestral homelands and their permanent return to Greece as the Turks did not want any other nationalities living there although the Greek population was a majority in many areas. 

Many settled in Piraeus and from there made their way to the salt pans of Anavissos in East Attica in search of work. Friction arose when more refugees arrived in the area in the summer of 1924 as the locals were afraid of losing their jobs and their rights to the farming land. Time and hard work were needed to reverse the situation before the relationship between the two communities improved. 

Despite the attempts to be reimbursed by the Turkish government for the properties that had been left behind, this was not possible. The refugees had to put an end to their dreams of ever returning to their homeland and to concentrate on creating a future for their families in Greece. They therefore set about building their church and their school. The first church was founded in 1932 and was dedicated to Saint Irene, as was the church in Palaia (Old) Phocaea of Asia Minor. In June 1947, the official decision was taken by the government for the founding of the independent community of Old Phocaea. 

The photographs, notes and correspondence of Felix Sartiaux were discovered in different archives and were published in 2008 and 2012 by the Greek photo historian Haris Yiakoumis. This information was used for the documentary ‘The Sacking of Phocaea’ by Agnes Sklavos and Stelios Tatakis.  



Lemnos is the 8th largest Greek island located in the north Aegean. The position of the island is quite important as it is opposite the Dardanelles, Turkey, and between Mount Athos and the islands of Samothrace, Imvros and Lesvos. It has always been a stopping place from antiquity for those sailing in the north Aegean. 

Lemnos, the eighth largest Greek island in the north Aegean, has many landmarks. One of them is the church of Panagia Kakaviotisa (Greek: Παναγία η Κακαβιώτισσα), the only church to be found in a cave in the whole of Lemnos and Greece. It is found east of the village Thanos in the area called Zematas, in Mount Kakavos from which it is named after. It is only 4 km from the capital of the island, Myrina. 

The church was first referred to in monastic scripts in 1305 as a dependency of the Monastery Agia Lavra on Mount Athos or Holy Mountain (Greek: Άγιο Όρος). The church has a low, white-washed wall built around it, but without a roof. It is said that every time the church-going villages of the area tried to put a roof over the church, the next morning when the work had been finished, the roof would have caved in. This sign showed that the Holy Mother (Greek: Panagia – ‘all Holy’), wanted as a roof, the ceiling of the cave, the middle of which has a small opening in the shape of an eye that the devout church goers named the ‘eye of Panagia’. Throughout the year, even during the summer months, water drops from the roof of the cave. These are referred to as the ‘tears of Panagia’.

This unique sanctuary was founded by six monks, who came from the small neighbouring island of Agios Efstratios to escape the raids by Turkish pirates. Both islands had ties with the Byzantine Empire and Mount Athos. They built the chapel under the rocky ‘canopy’ of the cave to perform the divine services for their religious needs. An old stone well below the chapel indicates that the area was also farmed by the monks. On the levelled area of the hill, there are remains of old vineyards dating back to the 1950s. 

Unfortunately, when the monks passed away, other monks did not take their place. Therefore, the last monk decided to leave the area and go to Mount Athos. It is said that as he walked towards the coast of Zemata, he met a local shepherd from the neighbouring village of Kontia. He entrusted the shepherd with the icon of Panagia ‘Amaranth Rose’ (Greek: Παναγία ‘Ρόδων το Αμάραντο) and asked him to place the icon in the chapel on the Tuesday after Easter Sunday and hold a liturgy in her honour. The monk then entered the sea, opened his garment, which took the form of a boat, and in a miraculous way, was lost from sight. Mount Athos is opposite Lemnos and can be seen from many parts of the island, especially from Myrina, the capital of the island. 

From that day onwards, the icon of Panagia ‘Amaranth Rose’ is celebrated in the chapel annually on the Tuesday after Easter as well as the last Saturday before the Assumption Day of Virgin Mary on August 15 (Greek: Κοίμηση της Θεοτόκου). Pilgrims from all over Lemnos attend the services and worship the icon. The ‘Amaranth Rose’ never withers. It symbolizes the purity and fragrance of the Virgin, which will remain alive into eternity. 

The chapel is at an altitude of 260 meters. It has become a hiking destination for many visitors to Lemnos. Once you leave the asphalt road, it takes another twenty to thirty minutes of hiking along a dirt track through the hillside with low bushes and pockets of wildflowers before reaching the foot of the hill where the chapel is located. The serenity of the place is in accord with the natural beauty of the mountain area. Besides the small and large caves that can be seen all around, there is an impressive view of the sea in the distance. At the chapel, candles are available for the visitors to light in honour of Virgin Mary as well as seats and tables to sit at for a snack before the return walk. 

Despena Dalmaris


The month of May is not only the month of nature’s rebirth and the making of May Day wreaths, but also the month of significant celebrations, some happy such as Mother’s Day, but others bloody such as the tobacco workers’ strike in Thessaloniki in 1936. It symbolizes the rights of the workers around the world for a better life.

The month of May is named after the ancient Greek goddess Maia, the goddess of fertility and re-birth. Maia was the daughter of Atlas (the Titan condemned to hold up the celestial heavens for eternity after the Titanomachy) and Pleione, the Oceanid nymph. She lived by herself in a cave on Mount Cyllene in Arcadia. She was the eldest of the seven Pleiades that make up the Pleiades star cluster in the constellation of Taurus. Zeus secretly slept with Maia and she gave birth to Hermes, the god of trade, merchants, commerce, roads, thieves, etc. Hesiod, in his Theogony, refers to this: And Maia, the daughter of Atlas, bore to Zeus glorious Hermes, the herald of the deathless gods, for she went up into his holy bed. Besides giving birth to Hermes, Maia raised the infant Arcas, son of Zeus and the nymph Callisto. The Prefecture of Arcadia in the Peloponnese is named after him. In Greek, Maia means midwife. Aeschylus, the ancient Greek tragedian, identifies Maia the nursing mother with Gaia, the Earth.

May is not only the month in which nature goes wild and fills the land with flowers, but also the month that signifies the struggle of the workers for better pay, an eight-hour working day, health cover and a pension at the end of their working lives. The first day of May is a day on which the workers throughout the world celebrate International Labour Day. The date commemorates the Haymarket riot, which took place in Chicago on 4 May 1886. In Greece, the first Labour Day demonstration was held in 1893 in Athens at the initiative of the Central Socialist Society of Stavros Kallergis.

Another milestone in the workers’ struggle for better working conditions in Greece is the tobacco workers strike in Thessaloniki, which began on May 8th 1936. They wanted an increase in their wages from 75 drachma to 135 drachma in accordance to an agreement that had been signed in 1924, but which had never been enforced. Many workers actually worked without getting paid so that they could at least be eligible for health care. Besides the tobacco workers, other unions went on strike with similar demands. The police confronted this massive strike by opening fire on the protesters. The confrontation finally ended on May 14 when tobacco industrialists agreed to the worker’s demands and the government agreed to compensate the victims’ families. The ending of the riots showed 12 dead and over 200 injured.

The photograph of the mother of Tasos Tousis, one of the strikers, lamenting over the body of her dead child as it lay on a makeshift stretcher that his co-workers had put together, inspired the poet Yiannis Ritsos to write the poem Epitaphios. The scene brought to mind the lament of Virgin Mary over the body of Christ when he was brought down from the Cross. Yiannis Ritsos wrote Epitaphios in ten days. He sent it to Mikis Theodorakis in 1958 who put it to music. The songs were first sung by Grigoris Bithikotsis. The work Epitaphios was basically banned from being performed publicly until 1974 when Democracy was reinstated in Greece after the fall of the Junta and the imprisonment of Colonel Papadopoulos and the other army offices involved in the enforcing of the dictatorship between 21 April 1967 and July 1974.

Below, is a part of the poem from Epitaphios by Giannis Ritsos, translated into English followed by the Greek.

On a day in May, you left me, on that May day I lost you,
in springtime you loved so well, my son, when you went upstairs,
To the sun-drenched roof and looked out and your eyes never had
their fill of drinking in the light of the whole wide world at large.
With your manly voice so sweet and so warm, you recounted
as many things as all the pebbles strewn along the seashore.
My son, you told me that all these wonderful things will be ours,
but now your light has died out, our brightness and fire are gone.

Μέρα Μαγιού μου μίσεψες, μέρα Μαγιού σε χάνω,
άνοιξη, γιε, που άρπαγες κι ανέβαινες απάνω
Στο λιακωτό και κοίταζες και δίχως να χορταίνεις
άρμεγες με τα μάτια σου το φως της οικουμένης
Και με το δάχτυλο απλωτό μου τάδειχνες ένα-ένα
τα όσα γλυκά, τα όσα καλά κι αχνά και ροδισμένα
Και μούδειχνες τη θάλασσα να φέγγει πέρα, λάδι,
και τα δέντρα και τα βουνά στο γαλανό μαγνάδι
Και τα μικρά και τα φτωχά, πουλιά, μερμήγκια, θάμνα,
κι αυτές τις διαμαντόπετρες που ίδρωνε δίπλα η στάμνα.
Μα, γιόκα μου, κι αν μούδειχνες τ’ αστέρια και τα πλάτια,
τάβλεπα εγώ πιο λαμπερά στα θαλασσιά σου μάτια.
Και μου ιστορούσες με φωνή γλυκειά, ζεστή κι αντρίκια
τόσα όσα μήτε του γιαλού δε φτάνουν τα χαλίκια
Και μούλεες γιε, πως όλ’ αυτά τα ωραία θάναι δικά μας,
και τώρα εσβήστης κ’ έσβησε το φέγγος κ’ η φωτιά μας.

Article by Despena Dalmaris
© Despena Dalmaris 2022

About the author

I grew up in Sydney Australia and as a teacher of English, writing has always been a part of my life. I have always been interested in the history, culture, and traditions of my country of origin, Greece. After my marriage I had the opportunity to return to Greece and settle in Athens. This enabled me to travel around Greece and gave me the incentive to write short articles about the different places I visited, trying to highlight the history as well as the traditions and the mythology that relates to them. I began my blog: Greece through Despena’s Eyes so that my articles could be read by those who had an interest in Greece.