The Greeks and the Black Sea, from the Bronze Age to the Early 20th Century

enth enΤίτλος: The Greeks and the Black Sea, from the Bronze Age to the Early 20th Century

(first edition, Athens 1991) / (second edition, new and expanded, Athens 2002)
ISBN: 960-87177-0-1

Contributions by: A. Alexidze, O. Lordkipanidze, A. Ballian, L. Polychronidou-Loukopoulou, P.N. Protonotarios.

A Panorama Cultural Society edition

A LONG JOURNEY beyond the Hellespont, the Bosphoros and the Symplegades.
A JOURNEY to the ancient centers of Hellenism, to Eastern and Northern Thrace, Propontic Asia Minor and Pontos (modern Turkey and Bulgaria) and to those places traditionally associated with the Greek diaspora (Romania, Moldova, the Ukraine, the Russian Federation and Georgia).

A JOURNEY across the Black Sea and its hinterland: from the Hebros to the Danube, the Dnieper, Don and Kuban, and from the Balkan Mountains as far as the Pontic Alps and the Caucasus.

A JOURNEY aboard the Argo, with her fifty oarsmen as companions, the Aristoi of the Greek world.

A JOURNEY of return; a return to the hospitable Euxine Sea of the soul.

The English edition of Marianna Koromila’s The Greeks and the Black Sea, from the Bronze Age to the Early 20th Century went into circulation in March 1991 and was presented in April at King’s College of the University of London by Sir Steven Runciman. The Greek edition went into circulation a few months later and was presented in October 1991 by the academician Michael Sakellariou at an event held at the Panorama Cultural Society.

Since 1991 there have been many reprints. When the fifth fell out of print, it had become obvious that the chronological coincidences that had made the book so timely, were also responsible for making it prematurely out-of-date. The astounding political developments after 1991 and the geopolitical, social and ethnic upheavals which followed the collapse of the Soviet Union had thrown to the wind the status quo in all realms of human activity and thought. The result was that even though the book was concerned with a very long historical period, and one that drew to a definite close at the end of the 20th century, all the elements had to be readjusted to accommodate the new, emerging realities. In addition, important archaeological study had already begun at places which had until that time been shrouded in mist. It was essential to update and expand the book. Research to this end required another four years.

map black seaIt is worth noting that the first English edition, which went out of print after only a few months, found its way into the international bibliography as one of the fundamental aids to understanding the Black Sea. It was, for instance, one of the six books in the suggested reading for this region promoted by the renowned Institute of Nautical Archaeology at Texas A&M University.

Pierre Lévêque, one of the few western Europeans at that time with an expert command of the region’s history, reviewed the book in the journal Dialogue d’ Histoire Ancienne 17, 2 (1991).

We include a passage in translation:

The Panorama Cultural Society has given us, in an English translation, a very beautiful book about the Pontos. Nearly four thousand years of history are evoked in two grand chronological sweeps: antiquity from the Bronze Age until the capture of Constantinople, and the period from 1453 until the present day. For the first section the plan is geographical, revealing the great richness of the coasts stretching from the Propontis to Colchis. Set within the text are contributions from established scholars in the field: A. Alexidze, A. Ballian, O. Lordkipanidze and L. Polychronidou-Loukoupoulou.

The book examines the continuity of the Greek presence in the Black Sea region from the Mycenean Age to the twentieth century. The role of Hellenism in the more recent centuries is thus given particular emphasis and shown as a driving force in the struggle against Turkification...

The text is dense, serious and highly-informed. The illustrations are remarkable, including rare material...

The result is beautiful a book. First because it is inspired by a long diachronic conception, and also because it treats, and often finely reproduces, a mass of documents that provoke the reader to think and understand..."

The Greek version of the new and expanded edition was published in 2001: 21 x 25 cm. hardcover binding, 480 pages, 364 color and black and white photographs, 51 maps, drawings and plans, indices, bibliography and notes. The majority of the maps were drawn specially for this publication. ISBN: 960-85142-9-0

The English translation of the new edition went into circulation in 2002, translated by Alexandra Doumas and Elizabeth Key Fowden. The indices, bibliography and notes were translated by Caroline Robinson. Publication of the Panorama Cultural Society (Athens 2002) ISBN: 960-87177-0-1

Central distribution: A. Christakis A.E., Hippokratous 10. tel. 30-210-36.39.336

The Greek edition can also be found or ordered at any bookshop. The last copies of the third reprint of the second edition are still available.

The English translation is available from Panorama: please enquire at

A Georgian translation appeared in 2008 (State University of Tiflis, Institute of Classical, Byzantine and Neohellenic Studies, "Logos" program, Tiflis/Tbilisi)


See more fot the english edition >> Koromila, The Greeks and the Black Sea (2002)