This country of ours, Greece, is a land with a history that goes back to the depths of time. Its culture, ideas, sciences, literature, arts, as well as way of life, system of governance, and its outstanding personalities and heroes had a determining influence on the course of the world, in multiple ways. Since ancient times, the Greeks have passed down their wisdom to the human race, and have been famous for their values, their patriotism, their courage and their heroism.
Over time, the country experienced many vicissitudes. It lived through golden epochs of great glory and brilliant prosperity. It also endured dark years of hardship, full of fear and despair, violence and death, years of subjugation. One of these grievous periods was under Ottoman rule. For almost 400 years the Greeks patiently endured all the afflictions imposed on them by their occupiers, waiting for the moment when they would resolve to unite in the cause of ‘Freedom or Death’, and once more take the fate of their country and their own life in their hands. For a life lived in slavery is no life at all.
This book is a small tribute to those heroes and heroines who fought to give us the free Greece that we enjoy today. None of them are mythical characters or made-up super-heroes, like in magazines and films. They are true and authentic figures, who must never be allowed to fall into obscurity or be forgotten, for they are our history. Every person in this book will speak to your heart in the hope of becoming your own ideal, each in their different way, through their own particular lives and struggles, their own story. This is certainly not a book of biographies, but the record of an aspiration that they all had in common: liberty.