Greek Pontos by Sam Topalidis

 topalidis greek pontos 1000

By Sam Topalidis.
Kyriakidis Publishers, 2024.
420 pages.


Sam Topalidis, a very proud Pontic Greek from Australia has compiled this well-researched book in English to help spread knowledge on Pontic Greeks (Greeks from Pontos, i.e. north-eastern corner of Türkiye adjacent to the Black Sea).

The book is divided into eight sections totalling 81 chapters covering many aspects of Pontic history and culture. Information written in English about Pontic Greeks is not as common as sources written in Greek. Each section allows readers to easily select parts that particularly interest them.

Topalidis’ study is wide ranging beginning with Pontic history, including the development of settlements, famous Pontic Greeks and even four family histories. He describes buildings (including churches) around Trabzon and the harrowing experience of the Pontic Greek genocide before providing a fascinating account of Pontic culture in its many forms including dance, music and theatre.

Part A covers ‘Pontic History’, starting with ‘People in Greece Before 800 BC’. Part B includes a ‘History of Pontic Towns’ and covers 20 such locations. Part C describes ‘Buildings Around Trabzon’ and includes many former churches in Trabzon. Part D describes the events of the ‘Pontic Greek Genocide’. Part E covers ‘Some Famous Pontic Greeks’ who are less well-known than other aspects of Pontos. Part F describes ‘Pontic Society & Culture’, from Pontic eagles to Pontic Greek costumes. Part G describes four ‘Family Histories’ and provides an insight into the experience of everyday people. The book ends with Part H on ‘Music, Dance & Theatre’. Pontic Theatre was also an important part of Pontic culture.

This book is an important contribution to spread this information especially to the Greek youth in the diaspora.


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