Georgios Tsontos

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Georgios Tsontos
Kapetan Vardas1.jpg
Tsontos in Macedonomachos uniform
Nickname(s)Captain Vardas
Born1871
Sfakia, Crete, Ottoman Empire
Died1942
Athens, Greece
Allegiance Greece
Flag of Northern Epirus.PNG Auton. Rep. of Northern Epirus
Service/branchHellenic Army
RankGR-Army-OF8-1912.svg Lieutenant General
Battles/warsGreco-Turkish War of 1897, Macedonian Struggle, Balkan Wars, Northern Epirus Autonomy Struggle

Georgios Tsontos (Greek: Γεώργιος Τσόντος) (1871 – 1942) also known with the nom de guerre Kapetan Vardas (Καπετάν Βάρδας), was a Greek general and politician.

Life[edit]

Georgios Tsontos was born in Sfakia, Crete, in 1871. His father Charalambos had been a rebel leader during the Cretan Revolt (1866–69) against the Ottoman Empire, and was assassinated in Athens in 1874.[1] Georgios entered the Hellenic Army Academy in 1888, graduating in 1893 as an Artillery Second Lieutenant.[1] In the Greco-Turkish War of 1897, he participated in the Greek expeditionary force to Crete under Colonel Timoleon Vassos.[1]

In 1904 he went to Ottoman-ruled Macedonia as part of the Macedonian Struggle, and spent two and a half years leading guerrilla detachments in the Monastir area, under the nom de guerre of Kapetan Vardas.[1] He also fought in the Balkan Wars of 1912–13. In the Second Balkan War against Bulgaria in particular, he once more led irregular forces to clear out eastern Macedonia from Bulgarian irregulars (komitadjis).[1] In 1914 he temporarily resigned his commission to join the armed forces of the Autonomous Republic of Northern Epirus. During the Northern Epirote autonomy, he was named military and civil governor of Korytsa.[1]

During World War I, he organized guerrilla groups in Northern Epirus in order to operate against Albanian bands that were raiding the Greek populated areas[2] In the National Schism, he supported the royalists, and as a result found himself dismissed from the army in 1917–20.[1] Following the electoral victory of the royalists in November 1920 he was reinstated, and served as commandant of the Army Academy and garrison commander of Athens. He retired from the army in February 1923 with the rank of major general.[1] He was restored to inactive service in 1927 and finally in 1935, reaching the rank of lieutenant general.

He also served as MP for Florina Prefecture in 1932-33 and for Kastoria Prefecture in 1933-35. He died in Athens in 1942.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Μεγάλη Στρατιωτική και Ναυτική Εγκυκλοπαιδεία. Τόμος Στ′: Σαράντα Εκκλησίαι – Ώχρα [Great Military and Naval Encyclopedia. Volume VI]. Athens. 1930. p. 415.
  2. ^ Leon George B.. Greece and the Great Powers, 1914-1917. Institute for Balkan Studies, 1974, p. 443.