Photographer's Note

Thessaloniki - Great city, Greatest History
Two day's trip to Thessaloniki. The first day with a lot o Africa's dust. But the second give me a very clear atmosphere with strong winds and enough cold.
So, i take a lot of photos.

The first one is a panorama from the top of White Tower.

Some info for the history of this Great city, from Wikipedia.
The city was founded around 315 BC by the King Cassander of Macedon, on or near the site of the ancient town of Therma and twenty-six other local villages He named it after his wife Thessalonike, a half-sister of Alexander the Great (Thessalo-nikē means the "Thessalian victory") (See Battle of Crocus field). It was an autonomous part of the Kingdom of Macedon. After the fall of the kingdom of Macedon in 168 BC, Thessalonica became a city of the Roman Republic. It grew to be an important trade-hub located on the Via Egnatia and facilitated trade between Europe and Asia. The city became the capital of one of the four Roman districts of Macedonia.
When in 379 the Roman Prefecture of Illyricum was divided between East and West Roman Empires, Thessalonki became the capital of the new Prefecture of Illyricum. The economic expansion of the city continued through the twelfth century as the rule of the Komnenoi emperors expanded Byzantine control to the north. Thessaloniki passed out of Byzantine hands in 1204, when Constantinople was captured by the Fourth Crusade. Thessalonki and its surrounding territorythe Kingdom of Thessalonicabecame the largest fief of the Latin Empire. It also was ruled by the Despotate of Epirus between 1224 and 1246, and was a vassal state of the Second Bulgarian Empire between 1230 and 1246.
The city was recovered by the Byzantine Empire in 1246. In the 1340s, it was the scene of the anti-aristocratic Commune of the Zealots. In 1423, the Byzantines sold the city to Venice, which held the city until it was captured by the Ottoman Sultan Murad II on 29 March 1430. Murad II took Thessaloniki with a brutal massacre and enslavement of roughly one-fifth of the native inhabitants. Upon the capture and plunder of Thessaloniki, many of its inhabitants escaped, including intellectuals Theodorus Gaza Thessalonicensis and Andronicus Callistus.
Theodorus Gaza (c. 14001475) called "Thessalonicensis" was a Thessaloniki born Greek Macedonian humanist of the 15th century.
During the Ottoman period, the city's Muslim and Jewish population grew. By 1478 Selnik (سلانیك) as the city came to be known in Ottoman Turkish had a population of 4,320 Muslims and 6,094 Greek Orthodox, as well as some Catholics, but no Jews. By ca. 1500, the numbers had grown to 7,986 Greeks, 8,575 Muslims, and 3,770 Jews, but by 1519, the latter numbered 15,715, 54% of the city's population. The invitation to Sephardic Jews expelled from Spain by Ferdinand and Isabella, was an Ottoman demographic strategy to prevent the Greek element from dominating the city.
By the 1680s, about 300 families of Sephardic Jews, followers of Sabbatai Zevi, had converted to Islam, becoming a sect known as the Dnmeh (convert), and migrated to majority-Jewish Salonika. There they established an active community that thrived for about 250 years. Many of their descendants later became prominent in trade.
Selanik was a sanjak capital in Rumeli Eyaleti (Balkans) until 1826, and subsequently the capital of Selanik Vilayeti (between 1826 and 1864 Selanik Eyaleti) This consisted of the sanjaks of Selanik, Serez and Drama between 1826 and 1912. Thessaloniki was also a Janissary stronghold where novice Janissaries were trained. In June 1826 regular Turkish soldiers attacked and destroyed the Janissary bases, an event known as the The Auspicious Incident in Turkish history.
From 1870, driven by economic growth, the city's population expanded by 70%, reaching 135,000 in 1917. The Dnmeh, well-established in the tobacco and textile trades, had founded a number of progressive schools. The Dnmeh became active in progressive politics and the independence movement, with some members joining the Committee for Union and Progress (CUP), the revolutionary party known as the Young Turks. By 1908 the Young Turks had forced the sultan to establish a constitution.
During the First Balkan War, on 26 October 1912 (Old Style), the feast day of the city's patron saint, Saint Demetrius, the Greek Army accepted the surrender of the Ottoman garrison at Thessalonika. With independence, during the 1910s, Greece expelled the Muslims, including the Dnmeh]]. They migrated mostly to Turkey. While bitter at the time, the expulsion likely saved many lives. Had they remained in Greece, the Dnmeh would have been subject to the Nazi occupation during World War II. Given the Nazis' racist theories, the Dnmeh would likely have been deported to concentration camps and murdered as Jews. By mid-century, they were becoming highly assimilated in Turkey.
In 1915, during World War I, a large Allied expeditionary force landed at Thessaloniki as the base for operations against pro-German Bulgaria. This culminated in the establishment of the Macedonian or Salonika Front. In 1916, pro-Venizelist Greek army officers, with the support of the Allies, launched the Movement of National Defence, which resulted in the establishment of a pro-Allied temporary government that controlled northern Greece and the Aegean, against the official government of the King in Athens. This led the city to be dubbed as symprotvousa ("co-capital"). Most of the old town was destroyed by a single fire on 18 August [O.S. 5 August] 1917, which was accidentally sparked by French soldiers in encampments at the city. The fire left some 72,000 homeless, many of them Turkish, of a population of approximately 271,157 at the time.
The Metropolitan Church of Thessaloniki, Saint Gregory Palamas.
During World War II, Thessaloniki fell to the forces of Nazi Germany on April 22, 1941, and remained under German occupation until October 30, 1944. The city suffered considerable damage from Allied bombing. In 1943, 50,000 of the city's Jews were deported to concentration camps, where most were murdered in the gas chambers. Eleven thousand Jews were deported to forced labor camps, most of whom perished. One survivor was Salamo Arouch, a boxing champion, who lived at Auschwitz by entertaining the Nazis with his boxing skills.
Thessaloniki was rebuilt after the war with large-scale development of new infrastructure and industry throughout the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. On 20 June 1978, the city was hit by a powerful earthquake, registering a moment magnitude of 6.5. The tremor caused considerable damage to several buildings and ancient monuments; forty people were crushed to death when an entire apartment block collapsed in the central Hippodromio district.
Early Christian and Byzantine monuments of Thessaloniki were inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list in 1988. Thessaloniki was the European Capital of Culture in 1997, when it sponsored events across the city and region. In 2004 the city hosted a number of the football (soccer) events, forming part of the 2004 Summer Olympics.

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Additional Photos by Chris Kontokostas (chrkont) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 351 W: 282 N: 793] (4005)
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