Sunday, December 27, 2015

Cervantes vs Aristomenis - scene 16

Banja Luka, Bosnia

A revolt of the helots

It was a movie playing οn TV
which I had seen when I was wee...                                     
But now my view was different.              
it was not a child's glance, 
                             [it was no longer indifferent.

Last night, I had terrible insomnia,
after my return from Bosnia,
while I needed sleep and leis,                   
after fun and nights out, in Banja Luka, for five days.

At two hours past midnight
the "late - late show" of that night   
was the old movie Spartacus, on the famous rebel slave.

As I was half asleep watching, my mind traveled to another brave,
Aristomenis, who lived 300 years before the Roman Gladiators.
A rebel who forced the Spartans to send mediators 
to the Athenians enemies and rivals.

In Athens... 
               the mediators and messengers were the arrivals.
All they were asking for was direct military aid for Sparta,
stressing that this time the common danger was not coming from Asia
but from the rebellious slaves and Aristomenis who headed 
and the probability of prevalence of revolutionaries is dreaded..

Ithomi, the stronghold of the rebels

The heroic slaves fought against all for five years,
and year by year the prestige of the Spartans disappears..

Eventually these undefeated Spartans were forced to sign a treaty
in which they would return to the city
and the slaves would migrate to Naupactus*, far away,
to live free in a beautiful green bay.

Naupactus, 2400 years after

Everyone knows the Spaniard Cervantes * and statue stands in the harbor.
On the contrary nobody there knows the liberator Aristomenis..
                                                                                        an historic murder.

                                                                                           to be continued...

A Rap Opera or Hip Hopera 

Story Script scene-by-scene
____________________________________________  by Odysseus Heavilayias

Language adjustments and text adaptation Kellene G Safis
Digital adaptation and text editing Cathy Rapakoulia Mataraga

*Banja Luka, Bosnia, As the second largest city of Bosnia and Herzegovina after Sarajevo, it is situated in the northwest of the country and is home to traditions and cultures of its kind. Banja Luka’s citizens buzz throughout the city’s tree-line avenues, boulevards, gardens and parks. 
As the day retreats to darkness, a vibrant nightlife awakens where people can drink and dance away to their traditional folk music and other genres of music in bars and clubs around town.

*The true origin of the name Helot is truly unknown but a common theory is that is relates to the village of Helos, located in the south of Sparta where it is thought that the first Laconian slaves would be formed under the state of Sparta.

The beginnings of the helots
It was after the First Messenian War that started in 743 BC and lasted for around 20 years, that the Spartans would claim the Messenian people as their helots. Any Messenian that didn’t escape, move or travel to a new land would be declared a helot, a worker for the Spartan state.
The future family and children of the Messenian people that become helots would find their offspring born into this new role as a servant to the might state of Sparta. Thus the population of helots in Sparta soon grew to a considerable size, much larger than the full citizens, the Spartans.

*The uprising of the helots (slaves)  Some authors make responsibility for the uprising with the helots of Laconia. This is the case of Plutarch in his Life of Cimon: the helots of the Eurotas River valley want to use the earthquake to attack the Spartans whom they think are disarmed. The intervention of Archidamus II, who calls the Lacedaemonians to arms, simultaneously saves them from the earthquake and the helot attack. The helots fold, but revert to open warfare joined by the Messenians.

It is difficult to reconcile these versions. It is nevertheless clear that in any case the revolt of 464 BC represented a major traumatic event for the Spartans. Plutarch indicates that the Crypteia and other poor treatments of the helots were instituted after this revolt. If there is any doubt in these affirmations, they at least underscore the immediate Spartan reaction: allies are gathered and war ensues with the same Athens that would be faced later in the Peloponnesian War.

*Cervantes  By the 1500s the Ottoman Empire’s naval fleet had become very powerful. They controlled most of the Mediterranean and often attacked parts of the Spanish and Italian coastlines, forcing the Christian inhabitants into slavery in North Africa.
On Sunday, October 7, 1571 The fleet of the Holy League, a group of naval forces from Spain, Naples, Sicily, Venice and Genoa, led by Don Juan of Austria, met the Ottoman forces in the Gulf of Lepanto, off of Western Greece.
The Holy fleet (about 200 galleys, not counting smaller ships) consisted mainly of Spanish, Venetian, and papal ships and of vessels sent by a number of Italian states. It carried approximately 30,000 fighting men and was about evenly matched with the Ottoman fleet. The battle ended with the virtual destruction of the Ottoman navy (except 40 galleys, with which Uluç Ali escaped). 

Approximately 15,000 Turks were slain or captured, some 10,000 Christian galley slaves were liberated, and much booty was taken. The victors, however, lost over 7,000 men. Lepanto was the first major Ottoman defeat by the Christian powers, and it ended the myth of Ottoman naval invincibility. It did not, however, affect Ottoman supremacy on the land, and a new Turkish fleet was speedily built by Sokollu, grand vizier of Selim II.
Nevertheless, the battle was decisive in the sense that an Ottoman victory probably would have made the Ottoman Empire supreme in the Mediterranean.

Among the allied wounded was Cervantes, (Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra) who lost the use of his left arm. Cervantes’ own ship, the Marquesa, was part of the Christian fleet.. Yes the known Cervantes of the famous Don Quixote…

  the foreigner  

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