Kastrologos
Castles of Greece

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Kyriakosellia, Apokoronas, Chania,Crete

Agios Nikolaos fort in Kyriakosellia

or Rocca di San Nicolo  
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Agios Nikolaos fort in Kyriakosellia
Location:
On a hill NE of the village Kyriakosellia of Apokoranas region, Chania, Crete
Region > Prefecture:   Greek Map
Crete
Chania
Municipality > Town:
City of Apokoronas
• Kyriakosellia
Altitude:
Elevation ≈ 370 m 
Time of Construction   Origin
end of 12th cent.  
BYZANTINE
H 
Castle Type   Condition
Castle  
In Ruins
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

The fortress of Agios Nikolaos is located northeast of the settlement of Kyriakosellia, of the province of Apokoronas in Crete. It was a Byzantine fortress built by the feudal lord of the region to protect and control his property.

Today some scattered ruins of the walls and the small church of the fortress remain.


History

In 1192AD, the Byzantine ruler Skordilis got the area of ​​Armeni, Stylos, Kalives up to Keramia village under his feudal possession. In order to secure his estate, Skordylis built this fortress on a hill near Kyriakosellia. The hill was steep, accessed only from the west and supported by a powerful circular tower.

When the Genoese pirate and count of Malta, Enrico Pescatore, occupied Crete, he built or repaired and equipped 15 fortresses around Crete. One of them was the fortress of St. Nicholas. But even when the Venetians expelled Pescatore from Crete (1211), they restored and used the fort.

During the revolution of 1217, which was led by Constantine Skordylis and Michael Melissinos, the rebels occupied the largest part of western Crete. The fortress of St. Nicholas was captured and became a property of Skordylis family again.

Revolutions against the Venetians in the early years of the Venetian Era were consecutive. During one of them in 1234-1236, the Venetians, led by Gradenigo, defeated the rebels and reoccupied the whole island. The only fortress of Crete where the two-headed eagle of Byzantium was waving was the fort of St. Nicholas in Kyriakosellia. On July 23, 1236, Skordylis family agreed to quit the fort, so as to keep his privileges.


Sources

  • Giannis Christakis, "Historical Fortification Monuments of Crete (330BC-1898)", Publication "Ktitika Grammata", 2004
  • Website CretanBeaches - Byzantine Fort of Agios Nikolaos in Kyriakosellia
  • Nikos M.Gigourtakis , Monograph in the History Department of the University of Crete, “Byzantine fortifications in Crete in the 2nd Byzantine period (961-1204)”, Rethymno 2004
  • Gerola, Giuseppe,1877-1938, Monumenti Veneti nell' isola di Creta /ricerche e descrizione fatte dal dottor Giuseppe Gerola per incarico del R. Istituto, V.1 Venezia :1905

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