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Kea (island)

"Ceos" redirects here. For the management occupation, see [[Chief executive officer#REDIRECTmw:Help:Magic words#Other
This page is a soft redirect.CEOs]].
"Keos" redirects here. For the radio station, see KEOS.
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Coordinates: 37°37′N 24°20′E / 37.617°N 24.333°E / 37.617; 24.333Coordinates: 37°37′N 24°20′E / 37.617°N 24.333°E / 37.617; 24.333{{#coordinates:37|37|N|24|20|E|type:city_region:GR|| |primary |name= }}</td></tr><tr class="mergedtoprow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left">Country</th><td> Greece</td></tr><tr class="mergedrow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left">Administrative region</th><td> South Aegean</td></tr><tr class="mergedrow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left">Regional unit</th><td> Kea-Kythnos</td></tr><tr class="mergedtoprow"><th colspan="2" style="text-align:center;text-align:left">Area</th></tr><tr class="mergedrow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left"> • Municipality</th><td> 128.9 km2 (49.8 sq mi)</td></tr><tr class="mergedtoprow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left">Highest elevation</th><td> 560 m (1,840 ft)</td></tr><tr class="mergedbottomrow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left">Lowest elevation</th><td> 0 m (0 ft)</td></tr><tr class="mergedtoprow"><th colspan="2" style="text-align:center;text-align:left">Population (2011)[1]</th></tr><tr class="mergedrow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left"> • Municipality</th><td> 2,455</td></tr><tr class="mergedrow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left"> • Municipality density</th><td> 19/km2 (49/sq mi)</td></tr><tr class="mergedtoprow"><th colspan="2" style="text-align:center;text-align:left">Community</th></tr><tr class="mergedtoprow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left">Time zone</th><td> EET (UTC+2)</td></tr><tr class="mergedrow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left"> • Summer (DST)</th><td> EEST (UTC+3)</td></tr><tr class="mergedtoprow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left">Postal code</th><td class="adr"> 840 02</td></tr><tr class="mergedrow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left">Area code(s)</th><td> 22880</td></tr><tr class="mergedrow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left">Vehicle registration</th><td> ΕΜ</td></tr><tr class="mergedtoprow"><th scope="row" style="text-align:left">Website</th><td></td></tr></table>

Kea (Greek: Κέα), also known as Gia or Tzia (Greek: Τζια), Zea, and, in antiquity, Keos (Greek: Κέως, Latin: Ceos), is a Greek island in the Cyclades archipelago in the Aegean Sea. Kea is part of the Kea-Kythnos regional unit. Its capital, Ioulis, is inland at a high altitude (like most ancient Cycladic settlements, for fear of pirates) and is considered quite picturesque. Other major villages of Kea are the port of Korissia and the fishing village of Vourkari. After suffering depopulation for many decades, Kea has been recently rediscovered by Athens as a convenient destination for weekends and yachting trips. The population in 2011 was 2,455.


It is the island of the Cyclades complex that is closest to Attica (about 1 hour by ferry from Lavrio) and is also Script error: No such module "convert". from Cape Sounio as well as Script error: No such module "convert". SE of Athens. Its climate is arid, and its terrain is hilly. Kea is Script error: No such module "convert". long from north to south and Script error: No such module "convert". wide from west to east. The area is Script error: No such module "convert". with the highest point being Script error: No such module "convert". above sea level

The municipality Kea includes the island of Makronisos to the northwest.


File:Coin of Ceos.jpg
Coin from ancient Kea; with a dog and a star
File:Temple of Athena (Karthaia).JPG
Temple of Athena (Karthaia) on the island

Kea is the location of a bronze-aged settlement at the site now called Ayia Irini, which reached its height in the Late Minoan and Early Mycenaean eras (1600-1400 BCE).

In the Archaic period, the island was divided between four city-states (poleis): Ioulis, Karthaia, Poieessa and Koressos.

During the classical period, Kea (Ceos) was the home of Simonides and of his nephew Bacchylides, both ancient Greek lyric poets, of the Sophist Prodicus, and of the physician Erasistratus. The inhabitants were known for offering sacrifices to the Dog Star, Sirius and to Zeus to bring cooling breezes while awaiting for the reappearance of Sirius in summer; if the star rose clear, it would portend good fortune; if it was misty or faint, then it foretold (or emanated) pestilence. Coins retrieved from the island from the 3rd century BC feature dogs or stars with emanating rays, highlighting Sirius' importance.[2]

During the Byzantine period, many churches were built and the prosperity of the island rose. It was Byzantine until, in 1204, it was captured by the Venetians in the wake of the Fourth Crusade. The Archbishop of Athens, Michael Choniates, came here in exile after his city fell to the Crusaders in 1205. It was recaptured by the Byzantines under Licario in 1278. In ca. 1302 during the Byzantine–Venetian War, it fell to the Venetians again, who built a castle on the ancient acropolis of Ioulis. In 1330 Cos became the seat of a Latin Church bishop but, since it is no longer a residential bishopric, it is today listed by the Catholic Church as a titular see.[3] The earliest indication of it as a Greek bishopric is in a list by the Sicilian monk Nil Doxapatris of the second half of the 12th century and this may have been a later interpolation, since the list of the Greek bishops of Kea begins only at the end of the 16th century.[4][5][6]

Kea was taken from the Venetians by the Ottoman Turks in 1537. Along with the rest of the Cyclades, Kea joined Greece following the Greek War of Independence in 1821.

HMHS Britannic, the largest ship sunk in World War I, which was the sister ship to the RMS Titanic and the RMS Olympic, sank off Kea island in 1916.

Historical population

Kea Island
Kea Island
Year Island population
1991 1,797
2001 2,417
2011 2,455


Notable people

See also

Scuba diving

The island is famous for scuba diving with excellent visibility, rich marine life, awesome wall, cavern and wreck diving. Water temperature from 20-26 degrees Celsius. The highlight for recreational divers is the wreck of the unique paddle/wheeler steamship Patris which sank in 1868. She was a passenger steamer with length of 217 feet, in service in the Aegean Sea, owned by the "HELLENIC STEAMSHIP Co." based on Syros island, at that time the capital of Greece. She hit the reef off Koundouros Bay at Makriopounda, Kea island on the 24th February 1868 with about 120 passengers aboard. No casualties were reported owing to the proximity of land. She lays in -28m [7] The world famous wreck of the HMHS Britannic, sister ship of the Titanic, located 1.5 nautical mile offshore, is for Tec divers, as the depth is approx. Script error: No such module "convert".. SS Burdigala is a recently discovered wreck, Script error: No such module "convert". from the island's harbour, in -53m depth. For experienced divers only. Sunk in 1916, a 180 meters long ocean liner built in Germany by Blohm & Voss [8]


  1. ^ "Detailed census results 2011" (in Greek). 
  2. ^ Holberg, JB (2007). Sirius:Brightest Diamond in the Night Sky. Chichester, UK: Praxis Publishing. p. 20. ISBN 0-387-48941-X. 
  3. ^ Annuario Pontificio 2013 (Libreria Editrice Vaticana 2013 ISBN 978-88-209-9070-1), p. 863
  4. ^ Raymond Janin, v. Céos, in Dictionnaire d'Histoire et de Géographie ecclésiastiques, vol. XII, Parigi 1953, coll. 147-148
  5. ^ Vitalien Laurent, v. Cythnos, in Dictionnaire d'Histoire et de Géographie ecclésiastiques, vol. XIII, Parigi 1956, coll. 1190-1191
  6. ^ Pius Bonifacius Gams, Series episcoporum Ecclesiae Catholicae, Leipzig 1931, p. 449
  7. ^
  8. ^

External links

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