NISYROS: Shaking Islands
you are thrilled by the volcano you’ve visited in Santorini, then you will be more than happy to know that there are still more volcanoes in the Aegean Sea, waiting to be explored! One of the most impressive volcanoes, worldwide, is in Nisyros, in the Dodecanese.
Nisyros, a small island in the Dodecanese, appeared 160,000 years ago, following a huge volcanic eruption in the area between Kos and the island Yali. Its present shape was formed 20,000 years ago, after the last volcanic eruptions in the area.
Mythology and History
According to Greek mythology, Nisyros was created under strange circumstances: during the Gigantomachy (the battle between the Giants and the Olympian gods), Greek god of the sea Poseidon starts chasing the Giant Polybotes, who has lost and tries to escape to the Aegean Sea. Near the island Kos, Poseidon reaches up to him, breaks off a piece of Kos with his trident and throws it against Polybotes, crashing him under it. So, Nisyros was formed and Polybotes lets out his sighs under the island, through the volcano. As Poseidon is the creator of the island, he is also considered Nisyros’ protector, so there is a temple dedicated to Poseidon and many ancient coins depicted his head. The myth of course explains the bonds that Nisyros has had with nearby Kos since ancient years, bonds in the cultural, social and financial level. Many residents from Kos used to live in Nisyros, as many signs show and there is a Nisyrian community in Kos too. Both islands had common kings, common military regiments and same type of system of government.