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Administrative Region : Peloponnese
Regional unit : Lakonia

  • Panagitsa (Παναγίτσα) Lakonia
  • Panagitsa is a small settlement, which belongs administratively to the community of Drosopigi in the municipality of East Mani of the Regional Unit of Laconia. It is 20 km from Gythio and 13 km from Areopolis.

    The first historical reference to its existence was made in 1618 under the name Panagia di Vacha, in a census during the Venetian occupation. It took its name from the small church of the same name, whose ruins are preserved near the fountain.

    Based on the records of the nani (National Library), which refer to land rents, by the Venetians to strong families in the area, we find that it was rented by the cavalier Thoma Focka of the Byzantine family Fokades, in the early 17th century.

    Panagitsa is located on the north side of a hill. At its peak, Karyoupolis, an important Byzantine city in the region, was founded and flourished, with a history of at least a millennium, and it belonged territorially. This is evidenced by the existence of two pottery kilns in the wider area, which supplied the city.

    It is called by the locals and Papadothomianika, because it is inhabited by this family, who are descendants of the Phocas.

    It is very likely that, as was customary in these cases, they built some makeshift buildings so that they would be close to the place where they were cultivated, and so the settlement was founded. Above the fountain of the settlement, the ruins of a small church dedicated to the Virgin Mary are preserved. The size of the temple is so small that the derogatory word "necessarily" is used, and the name of the demon and the whole area owes its name to it. From the ruins stands the vaulted arch of the sanctuary to the east, as well as the entire masonry, at a height of more than one meter.

    The west side of the church is a rock, which has been built in some places to create a smooth surface. The entrance to the church on the west side, which is typically small in size, is also preserved. Everything is so small that one could call it a children's church, with a capacity of no more than ten children.

    In choosing the place, for installation, helped the running water that gushes through the rocks. Because the water is hard to find in the area of ​​Mani, the existence of "Avlou", so they called the fountain, made the place Paradise.

    The fountain still exists today but in a bad condition. The settlement took its current form at the end of the 19th century, when some branches of the Papadothomakou family settled there.

    Above the door of the fountain, a marble slab monument to Themistocles Papadothomakos, which fell "in favor of the homeland".

    In front of our eyes, an amazing view unfolds. Around long distances the high mountains with a crown the top pyramid of Taygetos.

    External links

    Mani Hellas
    National Library


    METHODS AND FAMILIES OF MANI 15th-19th century by Kostas Komis, published by the University of Ioannina.
    HISTORY OF MANI, by Anargyros Koutsilieri Papadimas publications.

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