"Ancient History Lesson - Lavrion" Lavrio by janetanne

Lavrio Travel Guide: 28 reviews and 102 photos

Lavrion Silver Mines

After the battle of Marathon, Themistocles persuaded the Athenians to devote the anticipated revenue derived from a major silver vein strike in the mines circa 483 BC to expanding the Athenian fleet to 200 triremes, and thus laid the foundation of the Athenian naval power. The mines, which were the property of the state, were usually farmed out for a certain fixed sum and a percentage on the working; slave labour was exclusively employed. Towards the end of the 5th century the output was diminished, partly owing to the Spartan occupation of Decelea. But the mines continued to be worked, though Strabo records that in his time the tailings were being worked over, and Pausanias speaks of the mines as a thing of the past. The ancient workings, consisting of shafts and galleries for excavating the ore, and pans and other arrangements for extracting the metal, may still be seen. The mines were still worked in the early 20th century by French and Greek companies, but mainly for lead, manganese and cadmium. The population of the modern town was 10,007 in 1907. It is now connected by the new Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport and Attiki Odos. The nearest town is Keratea. It used to have a nearby train station but the line was abandoned in the mid-20th century. The mining town of Laurium, Michigan was named after the famous Greek Laurium.

  • Last visit to Lavrio: May 2009
  • Intro Written May 11, 2009
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Reviews (5)

Comments (3)

  • MITNIC's Profile Photo
    Nov 10, 2011 at 8:46 AM

    You should visit more often ;)

  • Yaqui's Profile Photo
    Jun 5, 2009 at 1:42 PM

    What a lovely restaurant! The food sounds yummy and you received a history lesson too. That must have been a special visit. Lovely page!

  • gilabrand's Profile Photo
    May 24, 2009 at 10:03 PM

    Ooh, I want a crystal from the beach! I keep the shell from your friend's yard in my living room and think of you often.

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