PELOPONNESE THE STORY BEHIND THE NAME

THROUGHOUT HISTORY the largest peninsula of Greece has had its share of name changing.

IN THE MIDDLE AGES the peninsula went by the name Moreas or Morias. Τhere are two theories concerning the name’s origins: 1st it relates to the “morus” (mulberry tree) which grew in abundance in the area, and 2nd it came from the ancient word “mora” which was the legendary armed infantry of Sparta, somewhat similar to the Roman Legion.

In ancient times, it was called
ARGOS, AEGIALIA, PELASGIA, APIA AND INACHIA

ITS CURRENT NAME, Peloponnisos, stands for Pelopa’s island, from the words Pelops (the King of Pylos) + Nissos (Greek for island). According to the myth, Pelops was given the region of Ilida (the western part of the peninsula, ranging from Achaia to Messinia) as a wedding gift from his father in law, King Oenomaus. The king had organized a chariot race whose winner would be wedded to his daughter Hippodamia. With the help of Poseidon who produced a chariot of winged horses, Pelops managed to win the race and was wedded to the king’s daughter.

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