Vasilisis Amalias, Athens, Greece
Unknown Soldier Athens Reviews
The Tsoliades (President Guards) Jan 02, 2012
You will find the Monument of the Unknown Soldier in front of the Parliament on Amalias Avenue and Syntagma Square. Its central part, created by the sculptor Fokion Rok, depicts a naked dead soldier only carrying his armor.
Monument of the Unknown Soldier in front of the Parliament , this image was inspired by a sculpture on the pediment of the ancient Temple of Aphaia on Aegina Island. Writings from Pericles' funeral oration, as it was passed on by Thucydides, are engraved on the wall around the soldier. On the two sides of the moment there are copper plates listing all the military events in which Greece has taken part from the Greek War of Independence (1821) till today.
The monument was made in 1929-30 and designed by the architect Emmanouil Lazaridis. It actually is a cenotaph (a tomb or a monument erected in honor of a person or group of persons whose remains are elsewhere) which, in the tradition adopted by numerous countries, commemorates all the fallen soldiers of a war.
The monument is guarded 24 hours a day by the Presidential Guard, also known as Evzones (Evzoni), who are wearing the traditional 19th century costume from southern Greece. The most characteristic part of this uniform is the skirt called foustanela. There is an hourly change of the guard. On Sundays at 11:00, there is an official change accompanied by military music. On Greece’s national holidays of 28 October and 25 March, a grandstand is placed in front of the monument for statesmen and officials attending the parade. Read more about them and the changing of the guard on the Evzones page.
The pigeons of Syntagma have been around as long as the square has been there. Even in the old days when the square was the front lawn of the palace of Otto, there were pigeons. Most of the other birds are in the National Gardens and leave the square to be pigeon territory.
You will find the majority of the pigeons in the open space in front of the Tomb of the Unknown Solders where you can buy seeds at a little stand to feed them. When you do, you will be in the center of their attention. They will sit on your hand, arm, shoulder, yes, even on your head. They used to having adults and children around.
Useful Links :
What around : Zappeion Garden (National Garden), Temple of Olympian Zeus , Panathinaikon Stadium , Greek Parliament .
How to go : In the center of Athens 500m from Monastiraki or Plaka area or catch the metro , Syntagma station
Opening hours and tickets : All day , no ticket .
Extra comment : Every sunday after 10 am have a march from the guards of president , for the exactly time is more better to get there earlier and ask the officer of the guards what time exactly is the march ! Is a highlight for me so don't miss is if you have available time ! March of guards and the army or municipality band will offer you a great begging of your day :)
The photos are from 2012 !
P.s. I make the review like a small guide ! I know is more better and easier to read ! If you ask me what I like ? I like all of them and love to be a tourist in my city :)
I am not Historical or a Guide , just explore my city :) . Extra information contact with me :).
Thanks for reading !
Part of the ATHENS travel blog
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