About the Author

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Ζέφη Ποτήρη

Zefi Potiri´s provenience is from the village of Karya, Tinos. She has studied Archaeology and History of The Arts at the University of Athens and continued with post-graduate studies in the field of Museum Studies at Leicester University, England. She has been working as an archaeologist in excavations in Tinos, as well as in museums in Greece and the United Kingdom. Her love of her own roots is shown in her academic accomplishments, as well as her active participation in the cultural events of the island. She has taken part voluntarily in the University excavations in Xomburgo and she has presented the post-graduate papers entitled “The image of the Annunciation and its influence on the people”, and “Developing local audience participation in the Archaeological Museum of Tinos events,” as well as several other papers. She has been an editor of the local newspaper “The Voice of Karya” (Foni tis Karyas) during the period between 1998 and 2004. Consequently, she became the paper´s chief editor. Furthermore, she has been a member of the board of the cultural association of Karya.


Since my childhood, I used to wait impatiently for the summer vacation, so I could go to Tinos, my mother’s birthplace. Having many sleepless nights before the voyage, I used to imagine my departure from the Port of Piraeus and the trip on the boats called “Naias” or “ Panaghia Tinou”. On the day of the departure, I used to leave noisy Athens behind, clinging on the boat’s gunwale and trying to look as far as I could, in order to see my island appear, my Tinos. Like magical images, the villages of Ysternia, Kardiani, Saint Romanos and Kionia, were passing in front of my eyes, while the boat was crossing the clear blue Aegean Sea. Finally, I disembarked on the blessed island of Virgin Mary. The warm smile on peoples’ faces at the port and their wholehearted welcome, made me feel as being a member of the Tinian society from the first moment and adore this remarkable island even more.

But the place where I really felt the power of Tinos was its interior, the so called “inside places” (mesa meri), as we Tinian people call them. Among the island’s unique jewels, you can find the villages that merge with the vivid natural scenery, the bench cultivations, the paths, the chapels, the dove-cotes, the threshing grounds, the windmills and much more. All such things were built in their own inimitable way, and you could not choose the prettiest one. They all have their own unique personality and they make you say every single moment: I like this.

The years have passed and the tourist development of the islands imposed new conditions. Still, this island is resisting transformation. It can repeatedly say “No” to the bulldozer, aluminum and concrete. Nevertheless, there are still occasions that hurt my feelings, such as the backfill of archeological findings, the umbrellas on hire at the beaches, the stores approaching the sandy beaches very closely, the buildings with no permit, etc.

Despite the above, Tinos continues to preserve its identity, due to the fact that it somehow manages to maintain some values that are currently disappearing elsewhere. That is why I invite you to explore it with me and enjoy a sumptuous feast of colors and shapes.


For the composition of the book you are holding in your hands, I have used the help of many of my fellow citizens, alongside with my knowledge of the place I come from, and the sources I consulted. A lot of space would be needed to thank every single person who, with great generosity and smile devoted their time and their knowledge to help me, alongside with the authorities of the island which eagerly helped me in everything I asked for. Individually, I would like to thank Mr. Stefanos Delatolas and Mr. Stefanos Ghiaghias for the valuable information they have given me, as well as the Catholic Priest Father Marco Foscolo, for the documents regarding the archives of the Catholic Archbishop. Furthermore, Mr. Savvas Aperghis, on account of his birthplace, Triandaros and its customs, as well as the games Tinia of 1895, but also Mrs Angeliki Moraitou-Gyftogianni for material concerning the “Upper Places” (Pano Meri) of Tinos

Heartfelt thanks to Professor Aristides Kontogeorgis for his unique photographs he generously let us use, to Mr. Tassos Anastasiou for his essential contribution and recommendations for the peregrinations (Odoiporika), to Mr. Giannis Psaltis for my acquaintance with the dove-cotes and the initiatives of “The friends of Greenery”

(Fili tou prasinou), to the personnel of the archaeological museum of Tinos for their prompt response when I needed them, to Mr. Frederick Printezi for the precious information on the off road tracks. I also express my gratitude to Father Sebastian Freri, for information and suggestions concerning the village of Loutra and the cloister of Jesuits, and to Mrs Nicoletta Delatolla-Foskolou, for her traditional recipes.

Moreover, I owe thanks to Mr. Nicos Ghizis for his manifold and generous support, Mrs. Ana Petrova for her general contribution and help, to the High School Principal Mr. George Amiralis for his appropriate remarks and tips and to Mr. Nicos Varthalitis, employee of Typokykladiki, for his patience and valuable help during the lay-out and design of this guide-book.

In conclusion, I would like to thank Mr. John Vidalis, who sustained me both morally and economically in this attempt of mine, but most of all my parents who never stop encouraging and aiding me in every venture of mine.

I warmly thank them all.

Zefi Potiri


Photo: ©photogonia.gr