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History of town
The traces of human presence in the region of Kastoria are lost back to prehistory. The systematic archaeological research brought to life the first lake settlement which is dated since 5.000 BC and the works brought to life a lot of archaeological findings that disclose the broader cultural development of the region throughout the centuries.
PALAEONTOLOGY
Nostimo is situated on the south-west of the region of Kastoria, in a distance of 15km from Argos Orestikon and on an altitude of 900 meters almost. Its soil presents mainly the Fossilised Forest, 20 million years old, with tropical and subtropical plants, according to the first findings of the professor of Palaeontology-Palaeobotanology of Athens University, Mr Velitzelos, who undertook its discovery. The main features of the Fossilised Forest are the perfect fossilisation of the tree trunks and the uniqueness of the findings. The palms possess an outstanding position as they are the only ones found in continental Greece, a fact that attributes a special importance to the historical evolution of the plants and the climate of the past, not only in the Greek territory but also on an international level. All around the village exist also rare sea fossils, such as starfishes, mussels, cockles, snails, shark tooth, etc. There have also been found some animal fossils with special scientific importance, that reverse the hitherto historical data. The fossilised tooth of a huge prehistoric herbivorous animal is very impressive. Until the termination of the researches and the studies, the visitors may see the findings of the forests in the Primary School of Nostimo, where there is a temporary exhibition room. This room is open everyday and two young persons from the village offer you a conducted tour. For more information, please call: 24670-84580, 24670-84566.
   

Prehistoric years
The lake settlement of Dispilio was accidentally discovered in 1932 by the University professor Mr. A. Keramopoulos. The works started in 1992 by the team of the professor of prehistoric archaeology of Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Mr. G. Ch. Chourmouziadis. The findings of the excavation researches provide us with very significant information for the life of the inhabitants of that region 7.000 years ago. One can easily see the remarkable know-how of the people of that age, in fishing, hunting, land cultivation with advanced- for that age-tools and in the construction of wooden residents (huts) at the shores of the lake. At the place of the works and according to the findings there is a park with a natural representation of part of the prehistoric settlement.

Historic Years
The wider geographic area is identified with the are of ancient Orestida, where the Qrestes -'Macednoi", as Herodotus calls them- lived. Form there the Macedonian Kings started uniting the other states to form the great Macedonian State. During the Roman Empire period the region was dominated by the Romans in 197 BC, who allow the formation of a particular local independence.
In Pentavriso, in the summer of 1999, came to light a very important sculpture ever found in Kastoria. It is the most ancient tomb anaglyph of the Upper Macedonia and one of the best classical works ever discovered in the entire Macedonia. This part of the tomb monument represents the calm and sad face of a woman who lived and died here 24 centuries ago (one generation before Philippos 2nd). At that time, Orestida was an independent kingdom that already participated actively in the political things of Greece. This work of art, though, proves that Orestida was actively participating in civilization and aesthetics of the central Greece, as its style reveals that of Viotia, Attica in the post- Parthenon era (400BC). The presence of such an excellent work of art, together with the recent discoveries of more classical antiquities in the surrounding area (epitaph writings, helmets, ancient pottery workshop) lead with certainty to the conclusion that we have to do with a unique ancient urban center and that the history of the area has to be rewritten. Also important archeological founding have been discovered in Psalida of Kastoria, in Nestorio and remains of ancient Dioklitianoupoli or Argos Orestiko.

Newer History
BYZANTINE ERA

In 395 AC, when the Roman Empire was divided, the region was a part of the East Roman State, which was developed in the Greek Byzantine. The natural beauty of the region attracted the Byzantine emperors, while the strategic position of the region constituted the base of operations against the attempts of Bulgarians, who appeared after the 10 century AC, to expand. The region was occupied from time to time by the Bulgarians, the Petsenegoi, the Norman, the crusaders, the Serbs, and for a very little period the Albanians, and finally, in 1385, the Turks.

Iconography from Mavriotissa ChurchPOST - BYZANTINE ERA
During the Turkish domination the region of Kastoria was turned into a centre of Hellenism by keeping unharmed the nation's conscience, the language, the religion, the mores and customs. In this hard period of the Greek Nation, the role of the Church was very significant in keeping the Greek element. During this period that region developed a great economic and commercial activity and has known a real prosperity in art and letters. This development rendered the region the centre of material and moral support of the pre-Revolutionary movements that leaded to the Greek revolution of 1821 and to the liberating movements of the 19th century.

THE MACEDONIAN WAR
The region of Kastoria constituted the center of preparation and action of the armed liberating Macedonian War. In that region the resistance against the Bulgarians is organized and important historic personalities appear, such as Pavlos Melas, Germanos Karavagelis and Ion Dragoumis, who, with their robust attitude, led the War to the liberation of the region in 11 November 1912.

More information about Kastoria - Museums and Mansions

 
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