Name Greek: Θεσσαλονίκη
Also known as Thessalonica
Formerly known as Therma
Location: Thermaic Gulf on the Aegean Sea
To the north and east is the lake Koronia
- screenshot of Thermaic Gulf,
The city of Thessaloniki was formed from a conglomeration of a number of ancient town sites and villages that had their locus in the city of Therma. In Ca. 315 BCE these towns were gathered together and renamed as Thessaloniki, after the wife of the king of Macedon, King Cassander. After the fall of the kingdom the city retained its independence and sustained itself as a port city. In Ca. 146 BCE the city became a province of the Roman government and prospered till attacks by Gothic tribes challenged the very existence of the city. The city was an important city for shipping throughout history and was touted as the second Premier city of the Byzantine Empire, a role that is continued to this day. In addition to bulk goods, the port also serves as a terminal hub for passenger ships both from abroad and commuter traffic within the Greek islands.
- Port of Thessaloniki aerial photo
Changing hands, from one kingdom or Empire, a number of times allowed for the various cultures to deposit an influence on the architecture and footprint of the city. Most notable among these is that of the Ottoman Empire, which left is mark on the city in the 18th century. Like most societies in history the artifacts and buildings of the past civilizations are re-purposed and used again. Such is the case of the White Tower (Λευκός Πύργος), built in 1430 by the Byzantine Empire and later upgraded by the Ottoman Empire in the 1700s to protect the port. Later in the early part of the 20th century the structure was again altered and its foot print reduced to the cylindrical structure that comprised the tower as it is today.
- White Tower,
Convention and Visitors Bureau
N.p. Thessaloniki Port Authority.N.d. Web. 13 April 2013.
N.p. Thessaloniki Convention and Visitors Bureau.N.d. Web. 20 April 2013.
‘Macedonia with Thessaloniki’, “Greece The mainland”, Robin Barber Editor, 7th Edition