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PIRAEUS



Piraeus is a port city in the region of Attica, Greece. Is is located within the Athens urban area, 12 kilometres (7 miles) southwest from its city center (municipality of Athens), and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf. According to the 2011 census, Piraeus had a population of 163,688 people within its administrative limits, making it the fourth largest municipality in Greece and the second largest within the urban area of the Greek capital, following the municipality of Athens.

The municipality of Piraeus and several other suburban municipalities within the regional unit of Piraeus form the greater Piraeus area, with a total population of 448,997. Piraeus has a long recorded history, dating to ancient Greece. The city was largely developed in the early 5th century BC, when it was selected to serve as the port city of classical Athens and was transformed into a prototype harbour, concentrating all the import and transit trade of Athens.

The ancient Greek verb “piro” means to traverse a marine passage, to traverse the sea, and to cross to the other side, which meams that I am now experienced. That is the meaning of “pira” (experience) in Greek; to have crossed a sea.

Peratos is the one who is situated on the other side, where I want to go (today we say “I will go to the end [‘perata’] of the world”). From “peratos” the Latins created “portus”, its original meaning being “passage”, and later “port”. Let’s not forget that the port of Piraeus also, in the days when the coastal valley was sea and Piraeus was an island, took its name from some “pereea”, the one who carried people to the othe rside, and that’s why many people today pronounce it “Pereas”. That is the correct way. “Pireaus used to be an island, where it took its name, from the verb ‘diaperan’ [=to traverse]”.

So, Piraeus is essentially the ancient port Rerasma which, through its etymological root, gave its name to all the ports of the world: port, porto, puerto etc…(Anna Tziropoulou Elfstathiou)

Naftilia (=shipping), warship.
Politismos (=culture) – ptolis – ptoliethron (=city)

<<Wisdom begins with the investigation of the meaning of the word>>.

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    ATHENS



    Athens is the capital and largest city of Greece. Athens dominates the Attica region and is one of the world’s oldest cities, with its recorded history spanning over 3,400 years and its earliest human presence starting somewhere between the 11th and 7th millennium BC. Classical Athens was a powerful city-state that emerged in conjunction with the seagoing development of the port of Piraeus, which had been a distinct city prior to its 5th century BC incorporation with Athens. A centre for the arts, learning and philosophy, home of Plato’s Academy and Aristotle’s Lyceum, it is widely referred to as the cradle of Western civilization and the birthplace of democracy, largely because of its cultural and political impact on the European continent, and in particular the Romans. In modern times, Athens is a large cosmopolitan metropolis and central to economic, financial, industrial, maritime, political and cultural life in Greece. In 2012, Athens was ranked the world’s 39th richest city by purchasing power and the 67th most expensive in a UBS study.

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