Theodoros Kolokotronis was a Greek general and the pre-eminent leader of the Greek War of Independence against the Ottoman Empire.
18 Facts About Theodoros Kolokotronis
The son of a klepht leader who fought the Ottomans during the Orlov revolt, Kolokotronis operated as a klepht and an armatolos early in his life.
Theodoros Kolokotronis achieved his greatest success at the 1822 Battle of Dervenakia, where he routed the Ottoman forces under the command of Mahmud Dramali Pasha.
In 1825, Theodoros Kolokotronis was released and appointed commander-in-chief of the Greek forces in Peloponnese and defended Greece against an Egyptian intervention.
Theodoros Kolokotronis later turned against Otto's regency, for which he was charged with treason and sentenced to death, but in 1835 he was pardoned.
Theodoros Kolokotronis was born at Ramavouni, a mountain in Messenia, and was baptised in the village of Piana.
Theodoros Kolokotronis descended from a family of klephts, and grew up in the village of Libovitsi, Arcadia, in the central Peloponnese.
Theodoros Kolokotronis was killed in 1780 in an engagement with Ottoman troops, along with two of his brothers, George and Apostolis.
Theodoros Kolokotronis acquired wealth by stealing sheep and marrying the daughter of a wealthy Peloponnesian notable.
In 1806 Ottoman attacks against the klefts forced Theodoros Kolokotronis to flee to the island of Zakynthos.
When Zakynthos was occupied by the British, he obtained useful military experience while serving under the command of Richard Church, a philhellene, in the 1st Regiment Greek Light Infantry; in 1810, Theodoros Kolokotronis was promoted to the rank of major.
Theodoros Kolokotronis returned to the mainland just prior to the outbreak of the war and formed a confederation of irregular Moreot klepht bands.
Theodoros Kolokotronis was already 50 years old by this time, a fact which contributed to his sobriquet O Geros tou Morea or "The Elder of Morea," whereby Morea was another name describing the Peloponnese.
Theodoros Kolokotronis next commanded with Demetrios Ypsilantis the Greek troops in the siege of the fortress of Nafplio, since September 1821, Acrocorinth and later of the fortress of Patras since February 1822.
Theodoros Kolokotronis is said to have ridden his horse up the steep slopes of Palamidi to celebrate his victory there; a statue in the town square commemorates the event.
Theodoros Kolokotronis is attired in the pseudo-classical uniform of the Greek Light Infantry, which he was fond of wearing.
Theodoros Kolokotronis's troops were armed with the most modern equipment and trained by European experts.
Theodoros Kolokotronis died in 1843 in Athens one day after his son Konstantinos's wedding and after a feast at the Royal Palace, in presence of King Otto.