Parga (Greek: Πάργα [ˈpaɾɣa]) is a town and municipality located in the northwestern part of the regional unit of Preveza in Epirus, northwestern Greece. The seat of the municipality is the village Kanallaki. Parga lies on the Ionian coast between the cities of Preveza and Igoumenitsa. It is a resort town known for its scenic beauty.
In antiquity the area was inhabited by the Greek tribe of the Thesprotians. The ancient town of Toryne was probably located here. The village of Parga stands from the early 13th century. It was originally built on top of the mountain "Pezovolo". In 1360 the Pargians, in order to avoid the attacks of the Magrebins, transferred the village to its present location. During that period, with the help of the Normans, who held the island of Corfu, the fortress of Parga was built.
In 1401 a treaty was signed with the Venetians, and the rule of Ionian Islands passed to them. The Venetians respected the lifestyle of the Pargians who provided, in turn, invaluable assistance to the fleet of the Venetians. At the same time the Pargians fought by the side of their compatriots to throw off the Ottoman rule. As Parga was the only free Christian village of Epirus, it was a perfect refuge for persecuted fighters and their families.
In 1797 the area, along with the Ionian Islands and Parga, fell into the hands of the French, and in 1800, proclaimed free city status with broad authority under the protection of the Sublime Porte. In 1815, with the fortunes of the French failing, the citizens of Parga revolted against French rule and sought the protection of the British.
In 1817, following a treaty between Britain and the Ottoman Empire, the British granted Parga to the Ottomans. This resulted in the Good Friday of 1819 where 4,000 Pargians, having with them the ashes of the bones of their ancestors, their sacred images, flags and a handful of soil from their homeland, exiled themselves in the British protectorate of Corfu where they settled. The former citizens of Parga never ceased to dream of returning to a free country and to participate actively in the struggle for liberation. But they had to wait almost 100 years for this. Parga and the rest of Epirus was liberated from the Ottoman rule on 1913 following the victory of Greece in the Balkan Wars.
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