About Lesvos Island

Lesvos : Sunset in the port of Molyvos Lhe island of Lesvos  lies opposite to Asia Minor, in a distance of 5 to 8 miles. It has an area of 1630 square kilometers and a coastline of 370klm. The warm climate of Lesvos island, the rich soil and the plentiful waters have created the all green Lesvos that the visitor enjoys today. The big areas planted with olive-trees are cut by dense pinewoods.

The essence of beauty is spread on Lesvos. Everywhere the sense of serenity and moderation. In the deep silence of the afternoon, in the hot calm mornings and the silver gulfs where ancient cultures passed and got lost.......

According to Mythology, Makaras, son of God Sun, immigrated to Lesvos island. This legendary king had five daughters: Mytilini, Mythimna, Issa, Antissa and Arisvi, as well as four sons: Eressos, Kydrolaos, Neadros and Lefkipos. The children of Makaras gave later their names to the most important towns of Lesvos.

Homer refers to Lesvos in Ilias and Odyssey. This is where Menelaos, Diomedes and Ulysses met, after the siege of Troy, to decide on the way of their return. As the archaeological findings evidence, on the island had developed a culture corresponding to the Trojan or the Mycenaean one.

Ancient foundings in Lesvos island

Sapfo gives an end to her life . Sapfo was born in Eressos in Lesvos in 612 BC and has been memorable till today for her passion, her sensitivity and the subtle lyrical vibration of her lyrics. An extraordinary artistic blooming appeared in Lesvos in the ancient times. The famous singer, guitar-player and poet Arion (625-585 BC) came from Mythimna. Arion reformed dithyramb and contributed to the development of tragedy. The great musician and creator of the choral poetry, Terpandros, was born in Antissa in 710 BC. Searching for a more complex music, he perfected the four-stringed guitar of the time to the seven-stringed guitar.

Two personalities of particular glory in the ancient world, Sapfo and Alkaios, belong to Lesvos. They flourished during the 6th century BC and were the two most important representatives of the aeolian melodic poetry.
Sapfo was born in Eressos in 612 BC and has been memorable till today for her passion, her sensitivity and the subtle lyrical vibration of her lyrics. Syracuseans made a statue for her, while in Lesvos were used coins with her face and the inscription Sapfo the Lesbian.

In modern history of Greece, Mytilini has also to show a pleiad of literary men the most eminent of whom is Odisseas Elytis whose origin is in the heart of Lesvos, the area of the picturesque gulf of Gera.

AThe popular painter Theofilos lived as well in Mytilini. Theofilos, who is known as Evzone because of the picturesque fustanella he wore, was born in 1873 at Varia in Lesvos  and living a life of deprivation and creation, died in 1934. For the simple anatomical compositions he used a special substance in the mixture of paints, which gave his paintings solidity and brilliancy.

He painted in coffee shops, houses, chapels and anywhere else to earn his food and many times without any reward, just for a glass of wine. Theofilos was recognised after his death in the artistic world, while some of his works have been exhibited in the museum of Louvre. Today, the museum with the works of Theofilos is located in the capital of Lesvos, at the suburb of Varia and exhibits 86 works of the painter.

Paintings of Theophilos, who lived in Mytilini (Lesvos).

The famous beach of Eressos in Lesvos island. Lhe island of Lesvos is a matter of soft light and mild chiaroscuro, emerging from the arms of the sea and balancing on the water in a mixing of the legend and the truth. It's like time, because of a sense of responsibility and respect, stopped before beauty and left intact this land of worship for the gods of joy and sun and the murmur of Sapfo was heard in the unrivalled grandeur of the Aeolian melody....

Lesvos island Photos and text taken
from "Lesvos - The island of Sapfo "
(Toubis Editions)
Toubis Editions : Lesvos island

Hotels in Lesvos Island
Hotels in
Lesvos island
Message In A Bottle
Message in a 
Bottle for Lesvos
Villages and Beaches
Villages and
Beaches in Lesvos
Detailed Map
Map of Lesvos
Practical Information
Lesvos Practical