Skip to content

Memorial to the fallen Russians

The marble slab shines in the sun. At the Monument to the Fallen Russians, Ypsipyli stops. Two flags are here too, Greek and Russian. Foreigners sleeping under Lemnian soil, with the love of freedom, with the sorrow of their homeland.

Russians appear twice in Lemnos. During the Russo-Turkish war of 1770, the Russian fleet, led by Alexei Orlov, besieges the castle and 72 Russian sailors are killed in the battle and then laid to rest in Moudros. Two monuments commemorate their sacrifice: The Monument to the Fallen for the liberation of Lemnos in the courtyard of the Evangelistria of Moudros and the Monument to the Fallen Russians in the Romaikos Gialos in Myrina.

After the October Revolution of 1917, thousands of “White Army” soldiers, mainly Cossacks, and politicians, settled in the Balkans, Turkey and Tunis. 5,000 Russian refugees were settled in camps on the Kalogeraki peninsula, near the villages of Pesperago (Pedino) and Portianou in 1920.

Living conditions were harsh, and many refugees died from hunger, hardship and epidemics. Some 350 Russians, 82 of whom were children, were buried at Cape Pounda on Lemnos. In 1921, their remains were transferred to Bulgaria and Yugoslavia. The Russian cemeteries on the island, deserted since 1924, were reconstructed in 2004 and later.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *