Andros, Festival of the Virgin Mary of Thalassini
Held on the 15th August, violinists play until sunrise at the festival of Panagia Thalassini (Holy Virgin of the Sea), while the locals offer their traditional omelette, the froutalia, and drink soumada.
According to traditional lore, both Panagia Thalassini and Saint Nicholas protect those who travel at sea. Following the canons of Byzantine iconography, the mother of Christ always wears a red tunic on the outside, suggesting human nature, and blue or dark green as innerwear, suggesting a direct link to the birth of God in human form, that is, Christ. In the case of the Panagia Thalassini, however, the Virgin Mary is wearing a blue tunic rather than a red one.
The island of Andros, resplendent in the aromas of lemon blossoms, hosts the tradition of the religious festivals requires that following the Divine Liturgy at noon, grilled meat, kolokythanthi, pastitsio, froutalia, sausages, amygdalota and skaltsounia are offered to the public at the churchyard. Later on, the celebrants visit the homes of those having their name day to convey their wishes, while the host offers them drinks and sweets.
Photo: Antaeus Travel & Tourism