Athanasios Diakos

Being one of the protagonist figures among heroes – chieftains of the first year of the Greek Revolution of 1821, he displayed a commendable patriotic morale and along with his exemplary self-sacrifice gave life to the Greek Revolution and actualized the motto ‘‘Freedom or Death’’. 

His real name was Athanasios Grammatikos or Psychogios. At the age of 12, he was sent by his mother to St. John the Forerunner (Agios Ioannis Prodromos) monastery in Artotina, after his father and brother, Apostolos, were assassinated by the Turks. At the age of 17, he became a monk and, due to his temperament, along with him being deeply devoted to Christianity, he was ordained as a deacon after a very short period. Being a brave and strong person by nature and with the tragic ending of his father and brother Apostolis imprinted in his mind, he soon left the monastery and joined the Klephts (anti-Ottoman insurgents living in the mountains when Greece was a part of the Ottoman Empire) under the command of Tsam-Kalogeros first and under that of Skaltsodimos after. He ended up being Odysseus Androutsos’ main henchman a few years prior to the onset of the Greek Revolution. In 1818 he was inducted in the Greek patriotic organization Filiki Eteria and, in 1820, he became an armatole in Livadia. In April 1821, in cooperation with other chieftains, he occupied Livadia’s fortress and, using it as a base of his operations, he achieved a considerable number of victories. He also occupied Alamana Bridge and on 22nd April 1821 fought against Omer Vrioni’s troops. Following his capture in this battle, he was transferred to Lamia, where he suffered a martyric death.

Source:  Artotina Association ‘‘Athanasios Diakos’’. www.artotina.com