The Tria Pigadia area

Inland to the east of Kato Myli, at the southernmost point of the main thoroughfare is the church of Aghios Giorgios: the interior is divided by arches springing from a fluted classical column, truncated and surmounted by a capital. Opposite are the minuscule chapels of Aghia Barbara and Aghios Phanourios. This area is known as Tria Pigadia, ‘three wells’, and was once the town’s crucial, and only, freshwater source.

Beside Aghios Giorgios is the Museum of Lena’s House (open Apr–Oct daily 6–9pm, Sun 6–8pm)—understated, beautifully presented and perhaps, in the end, more instructive than the Folklore Museum in the Kastro. Lena Skorvanou died in the early 1970s: she was the unmarried daughter of a Mykoniot wood-merchant, engaged in an activity of millennial importance on Mykonos—bringing timber for boat building and roofing from the Black Sea to the wood-starved Cyclades. In a manner typical of the merchant classes at the turn of the 20th century, he studied in Paris and his son (Lena’s brother) in Alexandria— something which explains the provenance of many of the items exhibited. The museum consists of only a part of the original house, a living-room and two bedrooms above (Lena’s to left, and her parents’ to right). Most of the furniture is French, some of it English. Lena’s bed is Viennese: kept above where she slept were the wedding crown of her mother (Lena never married), and a hanging bottle of holy water, along with the icons which rep resented the religious and ancestral protection necessary to get through the night. By contrast with the wooden ceilings below, the roofs of the bedrooms were made in a traditional Cycladic fashion—woven with reeds, covered with a layer of seaweed, and bound in a ‘cement’ made with sand and crushed sea-shells which sealed it and created a terrace above. This endowed warmth in winter and conserved cool in summer. The garden and main reception room of Lena’s house are now occupied by the Aegean Maritime Museum of Mykonos next door (open Easter–Oct daily 10.30–1 & 7–9.30), which is remarkable for its collection of models of ships and ship designs, from the ancient rafts of Mesopotamia to the early steam ship. There are several very interesting reconstructions: a Bronze Age Theran ship, depicted in the frescoes from Akrotiri, complete with its captain’s palanquin; a Greek trireme—the most concentrated naval war-machine of antiquity; an 18th century felucca. A variety of archaeological finds relating to the sea are on display—grave stelai of shipwrecked mariners, and even a reconstruction of an Early Roman bilge-pump. The original lantern of the Armenistis Lighthouse (1890) from northwest Mykonos— the largest of its time in the Aegean—is exhibited in the garden outside.

 

 

Mykonos Island is part of the Cyclades Island Group, Greece.
Mykonos, the Tria Pigadia area, the Aegean Maritime Museum. Museum of Lena’s House.

 

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