Areopagus of Eastern Continental Greece

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Eastern Continental Greece
Ανατολική Χέρσος Ελλάς
Regional government in revolt against the Ottoman Empire

1821–1825


Flag

Capital Salona (modern Amfissa)
Languages Greek
Religion Greek Orthodox
Government Republic
Legislature Areopagus
History
 -  Established March 1821
 -  Disestablished 1825

The Areopagus of Eastern Continental Greece (Greek: Άρειος Πάγος της Ανατολικής Χέρσου Ελλάδος) was a provisional regime that existed in eastern Central Greece during the Greek War of Independence.

Background[edit]

During the first stages of the Greek Revolution against the Ottoman Empire, there existed no overall authority over the rebels. Each region separately elected its own assemblies and tried to put together an administration to coordinate the struggle. One of the first such entities was established in eastern continental Greece ("Roumeli").

History[edit]

The uprising began in March, and established itself with the capture of the provincial capital, Salona (modern Amfissa), on 27 March 1821. The Ottoman garrison held out in the citadel until April 10, when the Greeks took it. At the same time, the Greeks suffered a defeat at the Battle of Alamana against the army of Omer Vryonis, which resulted in the death of Athanasios Diakos. But the Ottoman advance was stopped at the inn of Gravia, under the leadership of Odysseas Androutsos, who was subsequently named commander-in-chief of Eastern Greece. Vryonis turned towards Boeotia and sacked Livadia, awaiting reinforcements before proceeding towards the Morea. These forces, 8,000 men under Beyran Pasha, were however met and defeated at the Battle of Vassilika, on August 26. This defeat forced Vryonis too to withdraw, securing both Eastern Greece and the Morea.

The Administration of Eastern Greece[edit]

Vryonis' defeat paved the way for the political organization of the freed territories. In 15–20 November 1821, a council was held in Salona, where the main local notables and military chiefs participated. Under the direction of Theodoros Negris, they set down a proto-constitution for the region, the "Legal Order of Eastern Continental Greece" (Νομική Διάταξις της Ανατολικής Χέρσου Ελλάδος), and established a governing council, the Areopagus, composed of 71 notables from eastern Continental Greece as well as the regions of Thessaly and Macedonia, where the Greek uprisings would soon be suppressed.

Officially, the Areopagus was superseded by the central Provisional Administration, established in January 1822 after the First National Assembly, but the council continued its existence and exercised considerable authority, albeit in the name of the national government. However, the relationship was often tense, especially as Greece soon entered a phase of virtual civil war.

Members[edit]