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Museums  

Zakynthos Byzantine Museum:The Zakynthos Byzantine Museum is located in Solomou Sqare. On the right of the entrance is a stairway leading to the upper floor, which you have to cross the whole of in order to come down to the entranceway again. The museum has a rich collection of moveable icons, a veritable panorama of ecclesiastical painting from the Byzantine period until the 19th century, with around one thousand religious paintings of post-Byzantine , revolutionary and Zakynthian art. Works by Damaskenos, Tzanes, Kallergis, Doxaras, Koutouzis and Tsionis are on display. The earlier exhibits in the Museum are typical examples of Byzantine art, whereas the works of Panayiotis Doxaras (1622-1700), who had studied in Venice , are naturalistic and belong to the Septinsular School. Doxaras' son, Nicolaos , continued in the western tradition, as did Nicolaos Koutouzis (1741-1913), whose works one can also see in the Museum , as well as in the church of Agios Dionysios. The museum also houses the icon stands from the churches of Pantocrater and Agios Dimitrios as well as the exterior of the church of Agios Andreas of the Volimes. It also contains Hellenistic and Byzantine sculptures and statues.

Solomos Museum: The ground floor of the Solomos Museum, which is located in Agios Markos Square, contains the impressive tombs of Dionysios Solomos (1798 – 1857) and of Andreas Kalvos (1792 – 1869), the other great Zakynthian poet. In the entrance is a piece of the holly tree under the shadow of which, on Strani Hill in May 1823, Solomos was inspired to write the "Hymn to Liberty", which later became the Greek national anthem, as well as the "Free Besieged".

The Milaneio Nautical Museum: The Milaneio Nautical Museum is at Tsilivi (5km from Zakynthos town). This museum, which has won many awards, is a first for Greece, presenting the evolution of the country's naval history. It is unique internationally as well, conducting research into "the Greek ship of the Middle Ages", thus gathering together 4,000 years of history. Objects from celebrated ships, photographic material and historical artifacts complete this unique historical exhibiton.

Vertzagio Agricultural Museum: The Vertzagio Cultural and Agricultural Museum opened at the village of Pigadakia in the community of Alykes in 1998. The Museum has exhibitions featuring the cultural and historical life of a traditional Zakynthian Greek village, with rare pieces originating from all over the island, some of which date to the 16th century. They include pieces of agricultural equipment, household vessels, furniture as well as works by other types of craftsmen.

Helmi Museum of Natural History: The Helmi Museum of Natural History is located in Agia Marina, a beautiful village in the center of Zakynthos, with a wonderful view over the main town and the gulf of Laganas. It has some fine collections, with over 50 specimens from the natural world, such as birds, fish and shells from the seven seas of the globe, plants and animals that are now extinct, rocks and minerals.

Ecclesiastical Museum: The new museum and Treasury of the Holy Monastery of Strofadia and Agios Dionysios was opened on 12 November 2000 on the raised ground floor of the Monastery's new wing. The Museum, a space of cultural and historical memory, is comprised of icons and other objects of Christian art, primarily from Strofadia Monastery. The core of today's exhibition was previously housed in a small exhibition area that was not fully equipped for the necessary preservation conditions in the old wing of the Monastery, whilst some other works were in storage. Today's exhibition of treasures, holy relics, manuscripts and rare books, liturgical vessels and icons is not simply an artistic event but an indication of the spirituality of Strofadia Monastery. In addition to their theological and historical interest, the exhibits, items of worship and pious votive offerings, are distinguished for their artistic quality and are undoubted works of art. The icons in this space have here found their apt position and are a sign of the creative syncretism achieved in the Ionian Islands, a field for the fusion of the two seemingly contrary traditions of Byzantium and the West.

Monuments: Monuments, witnesses to the history and the culture of a place, could not be an exception on Zakynthos. Among them are the statue of Solomos in the square of the same name, the sculpture that personifies Glory and reflects the lyrics of the Greek national poet and the statue of Foscolo, national author of Italy. There are in addition pillars that revive memories of the history of the Friendly Society, the secret society that planned the Greek War of Independence, and the writings of Kalvos are also to be found on the island, for the purposes of knowledge, recollection and, mainly as a model.

Churches: Some of the old churches of Zakynthos that were saved and restored after the earthquakes of 1953 are particularly striking. The church of the island's patron saint, Agios Dionysios, found in the center of the island and in which the saint's tabernacle is housed, is one of the most important, and a superb Ecclesiastical Museum is also located here. Agios Nicolaos Kiliomenos, located in the village of the same name, the Monastery of Panayia Spiliotissa at Orthonies, Yperagathos Monastery and the Monastery of Agios Georgios of Kremnon and Ypapanti at Macherado, the Monastery of Anafonitrias at Anafonitria, Panayia Keriotissa at Keri are just a few of the churches of particular architectural interest on the island



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