What is Greek Independence Day celebration?

Greek Independence Day

On March 25, 1821, a group of Greek leaders met in a church. They took a vow -liberty or death! At the same time, another group issued a declaration of independence. Finally, in 1829, after eight long years of war, the Greeks won their freedom from Turkey and became an independent nation.

Today, people in Greece celebrate Independence Day on March 25. Many people fly the Greek flag on this day. In Athens, the capital of Greece, there is a big military parade to celebrate the day. Among the marchers are Greek soldiers called evzones. These soldiers wear a red cap with a black tassel, a coloured waistcoat over a white shirt, a white pleated skirt over white tights, and red shoes with a black pompon at the toe.

Greece had been part of the Ottoman Empire since 1453. The Greek revolt was precipitated on March 25, 1821, when Bishop Germanos of Patras raised the flag of revolution over the Monastery of Agia Lavra in the Peloponnese. The cry “Freedom or death” became the motto of the revolution. The Greeks experienced early successes on the battlefield, including the capture of Athens in June 1822, but infighting ensued. By 1827 Athens and most of the Greek isles had been recaptured by the Turks.

Just as the revolution appeared to be on the verge of failure, Great Britain, France, and Russia intervened in the conflict. The Greek struggle had elicited strong sympathy in Europe, and many leading intellectuals had promoted the Greek cause, including the English poet Lord Byron. At the naval Battle of Navarino, the combined British, French, and Russian forces destroyed an Ottoman-Egyptian fleet. The revolution ended in 1829 when the Treaty of Edirne established an independent Greek state.

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