Template talk:Greek War of Independence

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I think that the previous appearance was better. This looks like a mess. I think that you should add anything new without changing the whole appearance of the template. - Sthenel 18:56, 25 April 2007 (UTC)

I'm working on this template for quite a while now, and I'm not happy about either of the two, but I made the changes for two reasons: 1) a template's information must be well grouped and organized in topics. 2) it must make good use of the available space. Now, I added two extra topics, "Ottoman Greece" and the "Philhellenes". In the old form, it looked even more a mess. I am trying to fix it, but its difficult. Things don't fit in neatly, I'm afraid. Any suggestions are welcome. I'm changing it to resemble the old template more now. What do you think? Cplakidas 19:03, 25 April 2007 (UTC)
Just do something to appear the names as a list like before otherwise I'll try to do it later if you want Sthenel 19:10, 25 April 2007 (UTC)


Good job guys, only, of all the countries listed there, there are two very relevant places missing... Wallachia and Moldavia (and we do have articles on Tudor Vladimirescu, Dimitrie Macedonski etc.). I wanted to add them myself (or rather, I wanted to ask you if you have any objection to me adding them - and to where the threshold of inclusion is set in your template). In case you do not object, we still have a problem in that the two countries did not flags until 1834 - should we use their crests? Thank you. Dahn 19:56, 4 May 2007 (UTC)

Orlov Revolt[edit]

Maybe the Orlov Revolt was a large-scale revolt, but it had *nothing* to do with the Greek national movement, whose origins lie in the late Greek Enlightenment. Aleksey Grigoryevich Orlov addressed to the inhabitants of Morea as Christian Orthodoxes, not Greeks. The aim of the revolt wasn't the foundation of an independent Greek state, but the expand of the Russian empire. IMHO, it worths reading the book "Εθναφύπνιση και Εθνογένεση: Ορλωφικά και ελληνική ιστοριογραφία" by Nikos Rotzokos. Ashmedai 119 (talk) 20:31, 5 January 2008 (UTC)

I beg to disagree on whether the Orlov Revolt had nothing to do with the Greek national movement, and, eventually, the Revolution of 1821, even leaving aside the traditional "national-minded" historiography. Yes, it was Russian-inspired, but the Greeks, or rather the Orthodox Christian millet, of the time widely looked towards Russia for deliverance from the Ottomans. What the Russians intended - using the revolt as a distraction and a second front to the Turks - and what the Greek Christians who rose up and suffered reprisals for intended, are very different things. I don't think, and most history books and accounts I've come across don't suggest, that the Moreots rose up merely for the glory of Catherine II, Empress of All Russias... I agree that the Orlov Revolt was not a national uprising in the same sense that the 1821 uprising was (since the post-French Revolution definition of a nation was certainly absent from their minds), but it was an important part of a chain of events that led to it: for the first time, a Great Power intervened actively on the Ottoman Christians' side, only to abandon them (and that certainly influenced men like Rigas, who strongly emphasized that one shouldn't expect liberty as a gift from the Powers); many of the leading members of the 1821 revolt had been raised in the aftermath of the failed Orlov Revolt; the Turkish massacres devastated the Peloponnese, which certainly had an effect on its society and economy; and, through the Treaty of Kuchuk-Kainarji, the economical ascendancy of Hydra, Spetses, Psara and the other islands that provided the navies of 1821 became possible. Either way, the section is about "Ottoman Greece" and the conditions that led to the uprising of 1821, and the Orlov Revolt was certainly the major event that happened in Ottoman Greece during the latter half of the 18th century, and had profound effects on its society... P.S. I am aware of Rotzokos' book, but haven't yet read it. If you want, you are more than welcome to add information to the Orlov Revolt article, which desperately needs it. Best Regards, Cplakidas (talk) 13:54, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
Thank you for your immediate response. I insist that the Orlov Revolt shouldn't be mentioned in the template.
I never implied that "the Moreots rose up merely for the glory of Catherine II, Empress of All Russias". I think that there were indeed very good reasons to rebel against the authorities being a Christian under Ottoman rule, particularly a Klepht.
It is undoubted that the Russo-Turkish war and the following Treaty of Kuchuk-Kainarji had a great impact on the socio-economic status of many Greek-speaking and Arvanites (such as the ship-owners that you mention) whose descendants identified themselves as Greeks some decades later. Beyond the profound impact of the events, though, the Orlov Revolt should be considered rather a part of a long series of rebellions of (mostly) Greek speaking Christians than the precursor of the Greek War of Independence, included in the Greek national movement, as there was no sign of it at that time. (I regard the Greek Enlightenment as the major event of the 18th century -there would be no Greek Revolution without it). If there is an agreement on the fact that the Orlov Revolt was by no means a national uprising, I guess that we also agree that it should be removed from the template. Ashmedai 119 (talk) 15:57, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
Hmmm, as I said, while it was certainly not a "national" uprising in the 19th century sense, we should be careful about judging contemporary events retroactively by terms and concepts invented later... It was certainly an uprising (indeed, the first major uprising since the reconquest of the Morea by the Ottomans in 1715) of Greeks (or Orthodox Christians, since the term "Greek" as understood later hardly had any sense for them at the time) against the Ottoman authorities (and therefore as "national" as it could get, in that time), which taught some very useful lessons to the later generations about depending on foreign assistance, and had a major impact on the area that would become the heart of the Greek Revolution 50 years later. That alone merits its inclusion (although the present state of the Orlov Revolt article does not give many clues as to the connection between of 1770 and 1821), just as Ali Pasha does (who was also not part of any Greek national movement), since without him and the existence of his quasi-autonomous state, the 1821 revolt would have been very different, if indeed at all possible. I don't think it was a precursor of the Independence War in the strict sense, which without the Enlightenment would have been unthinkable (if not as an event, then certainly in the form it took), but it is nonetheless (IMO) the major domestic event in late Ottoman Greece. There may be no "ideological" relationship, but there is a definite continuity of events, and to ignore that would be wrong. The Enlightenment affected the ruling elites of the country, but the effects of the Orlov uprising greatly affected the circumstances in which they and the people in general lived and acted. The depopulation of the Morea, the settlement of large numbers of Albanians there, the rise of the merchant classes in the islands among others, even the idea to use fireships in 1821, are all inextricably linked with the Orlov events. However, I agree that context and more information should be provided (in general, articles about Ottoman Greece are in a poor state), but that is not the job of a template: it merely presents, in a short form, the major points concerning a subject and its immediate background. And IMO, for the reasons stated above, the Orlov Revolt belongs there. Cplakidas (talk) 16:25, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
I'm afraid I cannot understand the meaning of the following: (the Orlov Revolt was) as "national" as it could get. Any clarification?
I think this (the Orlov revolt) taught some very useful lessons to the later generations about depending on foreign assistance is wrong: Filikoi were spreading the message about a "mighty power" that was going to help the Greeks right after the outburst of the Revolution, clearly implying Russia. This is why they chose Alexandros Ipsilantis (an officer of the Russian army) to lead the Etaireia. Moreover, the purpose of the beginning of the Revolution in Moldavia was to engage Russia in a war against the Ottoman empire, after the latter's invasion in the Danubian principalities.
The connection between the riot of Ali Pasha and the Greek Revolution is much more tight (it is more than undoubted that the revolutionaries would have failed, if Hursit Pasha along with his army wasn't so many miles away). On the contrary, the Orlov revolt itself wasn't a necessary condition for the Revolution to survive (or even happen).
I regard the continuity of events that you present rather loose: Morea's population diminished only during the 1770's, Albanians just raided Morea for 8 or 9 years, they didn't settle down, and I suppose that fireships were used a long time before battle of Cesme.
So, Orlov revolt and the following treaty had a significant socio-economic impact on 1770 Orthodox Christians of the Ottoman empire, but it is not linked with either the beginning or the success of the 1821 revolution, but indirectly, through a series of events (this is how i perceive what you mention as "a definite continuity of events"), and, thus, it shouldn't be there. Ashmedai 119 (talk) 01:14, 8 January 2008 (UTC)
Well, to answer your first question, in the 1770s, the only "national" definition the Greeks had was "Christian Orthodox", as opposed to either Catholic or Muslim (or Jewish). Therefore, when the Peloponnese Christians, who were mostly Greek-speaking and were just a generation removed from the protagonists of the 1821 uprising, rose up against their Ottoman masters, they had a definite sense of common identity. It may not have been a "Greek national identity" by 19th century standards, but certainly was close to it (term it a "proto-national identity", if you wish). Let us remember that the exact definition of "Greekness" or what the "Greek national movement" amounted and aspired to was hazy and controversial to say the least even during the 1821 Revolution. So the Orlov revolt can be seen as a "national" revolution, albeit one where the "national" element does not fit the later prescriptions.
As for the foreign power, you are correct, but: Rigas himself certainly came to regard that any reliance upon a Great Power was folly, and it must be remembered that the revolt began even without actually having the support of a Power. Having in the past relied on Austria and Russia, and on both occasions been let down, in the latter case catastrophically, I hesitate to think that this "go alone" spirit was not influenced by past experience. What Ypsilantis claimed was a fiction, born of his own hopes, and the place and circumstances he tried to operate (the Danubian Principalities). Certainly no one in the Peloponnese expected any Russian aid when they rose up. Of course, the definite need for eventual foreign recognition and support was evident, but not as a determining factor about starting the uprising or not.
I agree that the Orlov revolt was not a "necessary condition" nor that its outcome directly influenced the 1821 revolt, but it happened, and it certainly left profound social and economical traces, that, be it indirectly, had an impact on what happened 50 years later. We can't just ignore it. I repeat that the template section we are debating about is about "Ottoman Greece" in general, focusing by necessity on its latter period. It is not about the "Greek national movement" (although it would be nice to have an article about it), and, as I stated above, the Orlov Revolt was the most important thing that happened domestically in the last century of Ottoman rule in southern Greece. It would be strange to omit the last (and only, during the 18th century) major uprising against Ottoman rule from the template, even if only as to illustrate the many differences between the 1770 and 1821 revolts. While I appreciate your points, to me, it would simply seem incomplete. P.S. The fireship idea was actually directly inspired by their use by the Russians in the Battle of Chesma, where Greek crews had participated. Regards, Cplakidas (talk) 13:12, 10 January 2008 (UTC)
It is obvious that "Orthodox Christians" is a religious definition, not a national (or a "national" -I still cannot understand that...) one and that was exactly the common identity the Moreot rebellions shared. It may not have been a "Greek national identity" by 19th century standards, but certainly was close to it (term it a "proto-national identity", if you wish). I would like to comment a little bit on this: you describe the creation of the Greek national identity as a gradual combination of existing elements. Yet, nowadays, there is a wide consensus on "nation-building" (I prefer the term ethnogenesis) being more like a radical change of the society's imaginary (see: Imagined communities), an other -not just different- ex nihilo understanding of reality, than an addition of new material to a former identity. So, no proto-national identity can be traced during the Orlov revolt. Besides, the controversy on a definition of Greek national identity, that lasted till the very first decades of the 20th century, is hardly connected to the -indicated by the sources- absence of national consciousness observed before the Greek Enlightenment.
On Rigas and the fireships: Fair enough. On the burst of the revolution: I have some objections, but OK.
(Please accept my sincere apologies for not making this point right from the beggining) Well, I think that only those aspects of Ottoman Greece linked with the Revolutionary movement should be mentioned in this template. The Orlov revolt, as a rebellion loosely influencing the 1821 Revolution -there is no disagreement, is there?- that occurred in an totally other socio-imaginary context, should be omitted. (There is no such desperate need to study the differences between the two events in order to understand the Greek Revolution, imho).
Wish I had the time to write the article on Greek national awakening. :-( Ashmedai 119 (talk) 00:09, 12 January 2008 (UTC)
"Orthodox Christians" is a religious definition, but in the 1770s it was also the only possible and available definition for those who 50 years later would call themselves "Hellenes". The Orlov revolt was not a religious revolt, nor was it merely in support for Russia. So there must have been something driving these people. What could it be, except some sense of identity separate from their Muslim overlords? It may have been "imagined", but that doesn't make it any less real. And I think (and traditional historiography, which is still supported by many scholars, has followed this line) that this sense of "differentness" eventually gave birth, together with the Enlightenment, to the "Greek national consciousness" as we know it. I am aware of the current theories on the creation of the national identities, but cannot by any means accept that they were (and still are) created ex nihilo: there has to be a common background, some shared characteristics, otherwise there is simply no basis to work upon. Despite the many artificial elements in modern "national identities", there has to be a genuine feeling of commonness underneath (this "imagined community"), else they are doomed to failure (prime example: the "Soviet people"). I therefore still prefer the older term "national awakening", which does of course include a heavy dose of "nation-building". However, both processes went in tandem, and concerted "nation-building", directed by the state and the intelligentsia at the broad masses, cannot really be said to have existed until after independence. Anyway, this is a long discussion, which will lead us nowhere.
My point is that the Orlov revolt may not have been crucial for the 1821 revolt - we both agree there - but it was still relevant to a large degree, and a stepping-stone in the "national awakening" process, for all the reasons stated above. After all, Katsonis too was not "crucial", but his exploits did keep the flame of the rebellion alive, just like the klephts. As I said, to me, without a reference to it the template would seem "incomplete". I prefer to have it there and let the readers form their own conclusions, as there is no consensus. If you consider it misleading or inaccurate, then I can only again repeat the sincere invitation to elaborate upon the connection in the relevant articles. Regards, Cplakidas (talk) 18:24, 16 January 2008 (UTC)
Setting aside the first paragraph (even though I enjoyed our talk), the connection you are talking about is so loose that, if accepted as such, we should also include in the template events like the French Revolution that had a tremendous effect on the Greek national movement and Napoleon's wars that gave a great boost to Greek ship-owners and... My point is that the connection between the Greek war of Independence and the Orlov revolt, Katsonis, even Krokodeilos Kladas was forged later by nationalistic historiography that viewed every rebellion since 1453 as a precursor of the 1821 Revolution and an expression of Greek national identity that was meant to emerge, just like you do, when implying the existence of a latent Greek national identity, in disaccord with the sources of the era, that do not talk about a somehow national movement, and that mentioning the revolt in the template reproduces this false opinion. Ashmedai 119 (talk) 22:58, 24 January 2008 (UTC)

Holocaust of Samothrace[edit]

I just thought that the term "Holocaust of Samothrace" would be OK, because it was first used by French painter François-Auguste Vinson in his painting with the title "Holocaust of Samothrace" (1821). User:Pyraechmes We were here before you came and we will be here after you leave 22:33, 27 March 2015 (UTC)