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Folegandros has been inhabited since the early Cycladic period and its first settlers were the Kares and the Phoenicians. Later come the Cretans, with the son of King Minos (called Folegandros) as their leader. This is where the name of the island comes from. Another version is that the name of the island comes from the Phoenician word “phelekgundari”, which means rocky ground. Later it became part of the Athenian alliance while in the Roman period it was used as a place of exile.

During the Venetian domination its official name was “Polykandros”. At the duration of the Venetian domination, it suffered many attacks from the Turks, who finally occupied it in 1617. In 1828 the island was linked to the newly established Greek state and during the whole19th century it was financially supported by emigrant Greeks from Constantinople and Alexandria. In the 1920’s and up to 1969 it was once again used, as a place of exile.
folegandros map