Cyclades Islands Guide
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A few words about Cyclades Islands: Cyclades or Kikládhes, (ΚΥΚΛΑΔΕΣ in Greek) group of islands, south-eastern Greece, in the Aegean Sea, south-east of Athens. The islands form both a geographical division and an administrative region (or nome) of Greece. In ancient times the Cyclades comprised the islands of Andros, Delos, Milos, Naxos, Paros, Kea, Kithnos, Mykonos, Serifos, Sifnos, Syros, and Tinos. This group was regarded as forming a circle, with the island of Delos, considered sacred, at its centre. The present-day Cyclades Islands group includes, as well as the above, Ios, Amorgos, Santorini, Anafi, and about 200 smaller islands, some of which were formerly grouped with the Sporades. The capital of the Cyclades is Ermoupolis, on the island of Syros.
The islands are mountainous, and with the exception of Naxos, the largest of the group, they are generally scantily watered and sparsely wooded. Wine, fruit, olive oil, wheat, and tobacco are the principal agricultural products of the Cyclades. Mineral products are marble, granite, pumice, fuller's earth, emery, sulphur, and manganese and iron ores. Delos, Milos, and Santorini contain numerous ancient remains, many of which have been excavated by archaeologists. The famous Hellenistic sculpture Venus de Milo, now housed in the Louvre in Paris, was found on the island of Milos in the early 19th century.
About 479 bc the Cyclades entered the Delian League as an Athenian dependency. In the 13th century ad the islands formed a major part of the Venetian duchy of the Archipelago. The Ottoman Turks (see Ottoman Empire) succeeded in conquering the Cyclades in 1566, and the islands came under the control of Greece in 1829. Total population (1991) 100,100.
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