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History

Kythnos took its name from the head of Dryopes and first settler of the island “Kythnos”, though his existence is doubtful. Another version mentions that the name comes from the root “kyth”, which emanates from the verb keftho (crypto) and is reported in the place where somebody is hidden, probably a place with forests, valleys, caves or mines.

Recent excavations in the Maroulas region, brought to light discoveries that prove that the island was inhabited at Mesolithic period, which means that perhaps here existed the most ancient settlement in the Cyclades. On the13th century B.C., according to Herodotus, the Dryopes are expatriated form the island, signs of that constitute the cyclopean walls and temples that they left behind. The Iones were the next who settled on the island. In his “Kythnian State”, Aristotle reports of the ideal state that the above populations created.

During Persian wars, Kythnos participated with a trireme and then becomes a member of the Athenian Alliance.

Later it constituted a part of the Roman state  while afterwards is included in the “Subject of the Aegean” from the Byzantines.

During Venetian domination it is occupied by the noble Markos Sanoudos and begins to be named Thermia (due to the hot springs of the island). Then it comes under sovereignty of the Kasteli and later to the Gozadini family. It remains under sovereignty of the family even after the raid of Barbarosa (1537), after the pact of peace between the Turks and the Venetians, while at the duration of the Russian-Turkish war it is occupied by the Russians. In 1827 the island is named once again Kythnos and participates in the revolutionary struggle against the Turks.

In the years of king Otto it was a place of exile of rebels and political opponents. In 1862 mutineers from Syros, aiming at the release of detainees collided with the army of the Government in the bay of Agia Irini. The conclusion of the conflict was the repression of the movement with victims the mutineers Leotsakos, Moraitinis, Skravelis and other banished.

Today residents of Kythnos deal with tourism, without  having abandoned their rural and other occupations.

The visitor is offered the perfect combination of a beautiful Cycladic landscape, with its spotless seas, its local products (meat, dairy, vegetables) and its fresh fish.
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