Tinos: Civilization Tinos

Civilization Tinos: Civilization of the island of Tinos, Greece, Cyclades

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Tinos Civilization: Information about the Civilization of Tinos


Tinos is the island of art and beauty. It hides architectural and artist treasures. Nature has provided it with an abundance of appropriate elements, such as green and white marble, schist and granite. Nature itself inspired you for artistic creations. The golden sunrises and the purple sunsets in a nature with ravines and oleander, roads and pathways, herbs, steep rocks , waters, sandy beaches, mountains and the caressing of the northern wind, the light blue sky and the excessive sunlight are magnificent. All these are elements that contribute to the molding of a folklore artist and they influence him in the sculpturing on the lifeless marble, rock or wood and on other instances with the paintbrush on the canvas. 

The Tinian house is distinguished for its simplicity and its functionalism. Usually it is comprised of a spacious room, which is used as the welcoming area and from smaller rooms according to the various needs of the owners. The kitchen with the fireplace and the courtyard also comes to complement it.

The courtyard is always in the front of the house and it never faces the north. Usually the floors communicate between them with an internal staircase. The houses also have very beautiful chimneys. The furnishing of the house is relatively simple and is comprised with the absolutely necessary.

The Tirian houses

Concerning the churches and the bell towers it is judged that the systematic research has not yet been completed and is very hard to be achieved due to the fact that is has a large volume in material and number, considering that two dogmas exist on the island.

The dovecotes of Tinos are admirable. There are dovecotes in many of the Cycladic islands but the most and the biggest are found on Tinos. The Tinians maintained and still maintain the doves, mainly for their tasty meat but also for their excrements, which make excellent manure. They are built on the mountainsides and decorate the landscape beautifully. They are rock built bulky constructions their lower part is used as a storage room and the higher for the housing for the pigeons.

Small Village

The constructors of the Dovecotes with great mastery create diamond shaped, triangular or sun shaped facets.

The dovecotes comprise in their total architectural monuments and folklore creations unique in the world. It is not know how many dovecotes exist in Tinos exactly, but they are definitely more than 600. They are mainly buildings from the 18th and 19th century.

The Tinian marble carvers created masterpieces with the local marble. Churches, cemeteries, blazons, water fountains and other constructions that decorate the area. It is referred that in 1845, the art of marble sculpturing of the island was a significant industry and occupied more than one thousand technicians. They used to form ships, fish, trees, heads, doves and other forms on marble and decorated their environment with aesthetic value.

The Tinian craftsmen did not only constrain themselves with the working of marble but also that of wood, but unfortunately very few of their work has been preserved. Famous woodcarvers such as Chatzinikolaos Printzis, Ioannis Kollaros and Ioannis Platis created works or art such as the baldachin of Anastaseos in Jerusalem and others.
The skilful villagers occupy themselves with the art of creating locks and more specifically with wooden locks. They are constructed in such a way that it is impossible to use a skeleton key.

Basketry is another field that the people of Tinos are involved in. In the beginning of the 20th century many thousands of baskets were made available in the market to be sold to Smyrna and the European markets. 

Basically during Easter every family makes wonderful homemade sweets that are offered to friends together with a liqueur or wonderful homemade raki or otherwise known as tsipouro. The housewives make sweets with dough and walnuts that have the shape of a fish and are named psarakia (means small fishes in Greek). These are offered in weddings, baptisms and also at the celebration of name days. Pasteli in diamond shaped pieces is also offered dipped in pure honey.

Another very nice custom was the Vengeras (Evening parties), during which friendly families used to gather together and visitors were offered figs, must-jelly and raisins accompanied with raki.
Graphical Places

The people of Tinos really enjoy entertainment, singing and dancing. Young men and women dance their local dances, ballo and sirto to the sounds of the local instruments which are usually the violin and the accordeon. The violin player here and there improvises lines that compliment the appearance and grace of the dancers.

Another part of its civilization is the windmills. In the past more than 80 windmills used to operate, that grinded grains even from the surrounding islands. Some survive until today. The owners of the windmills are believed to be excellent meteorologists, as they accumulated great experience concerning the wind and the weather. They played a major role during the 2nd World War offering flour to the population. The windmills are proof of the relation of the island with Aiolos , the god of the winds. 

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Komi Tinos Town Kardiani
Kalloni Panormos Kionia
Triantaros Kambou Laoudi
Kolibithra . .











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