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Imaging Suli

Interactions between Philhellenic Ideas and Greek Identity Discourse

Ewa Róża Janion

Suli is a mountainous land in Epirus in northwestern Greece. This book collates its Greek 19 th -century vision with the European view in the works of English, French, Italian, and Polish philhellenes. Investigating the interactions between various images of Suli, it analyses its functioning in different European cultures: the first historical mentions of Suli, the role of Byron’s poems in shaping its image, Greek folk songs about female fighters from Suli, and the mass suicide of Suliote women known as the Dance of Zalongo. Especially the legend about the bravery of the Suliotes has been important in Greek national discourse and the study follows the threads of the legend formed by Greek intellectuals and the European Philhellenes.
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Catalogue of the 19th-century Pictures, Paintings, Illustrations etc. Related to Suli

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Suli & Suliotes

Agricola Filippo, Giovane albanese inseguita da un Turco, or: Il salto della giovane albanese nell’anno 1769, ~1830, oil on canvas, 1.50 x 2.02 m., Rome, Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna, inv. no. 6349. Also entitled: Donna di Suli, cf. C. Spetsieri Beschi, E. Lucarelli (eds.), Risorgimento greco e filellenismo italiano: lotte, cultura, arte: mostra promossa dall’ambasciata di Grecia e dall’Associazione per lo sviluppo delle relazioni fra Italia e Grecia: Roma, Palazzo Venezia, 25 marzo-25 aprile 1986, Roma 1986, p. 316–317. I am not sure if this title is correct, F. Agricola might have depicted an event described in a broadly read book: M. Bignon, Les cabinets at les peuples, Paris 1823 (3rd ed.) p. 271: “Là, sur une hauteur, à la pointe d’un rocher, s’élève une croix: c’est un souvenir du délire, de l’amour maternel et de la liberté. Lors de la descente des Albanais dans la Morée, à la suite de la guerre de 1769, une jeune Arcadienne ayant un enfant dans ses bras, s’échappe d’un vil lage incendié; elle fuit les brigands qui la poursuivent, lorsque devant elle se découvre un précipice: elle s’arrête, met un genou en terre, regarde le ciel, et s’élance dans l’abîme. Gloire éternelle, gloire à la beauté, à l’innocence qui court au trépas pour se soustraire au déshonneur et à l’esclavage!”

Auguste Jules Robert, Personnage en costume souliote, portrait présumé du Comte Palatiano, watercolor & gouache...

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