Alea - A Brief History

T he village of Alea is located In the northeast Peloponnesus equal distance from Argos. Corinth, and Tripoli, Built at the base of Mt. Trahee, 600 km above sea level, It is a beautiful small village which until 1957 had a population of approximately 1200 people. The immigration wave of the 50's and 60's took away almost 80x of the Alea population. Most Aleates moved to the midwestern United States, eastern Canada, Australia, and other parts of Greece.

Traditional occupations of the villagers have been agriculture and herding. Basic products include wheat, corn, rye, grapes, milk, and cheese.

Houses in Alea are stone-built have ceramic tile roofs, and are smothered by various types of trees giving their occupants good year-round protection from the elements.

The public school is the centerpiece of Alea standing tall in the middle of it. It was built with stone and was the donation of the wealthy philanthropist Andreas Syngros. Adding beauty to the village center is the Byzantine-style church Assumption Of The Virgin Mary and the government building, home of the village council, post office, and police. Still existing but not used is the church of St. John. Built in the 13th century it displays Byzantine architecture and artwork.

The patron saint of Alea is the Prophet Elias. The annual festival on July 20th, St. Elias Day, brings to the village hundreds of visitors.

The ancient city of Alea is located 4km southeast of modern Alea and was founded in the year 270 b.c. by Aleos, grandson of Arcadas the first king of Arcadia. It was built as a fortress for protection against the Spartans and others who raided and tooted Arcadia. Today all that remains of ancient Alea are portions of the six foot thick stone walls and towers which surrounded the city and ruins from the temple of Dionysus. The ancient Aleates minted their own coins, erected temples to the gods Dionysus, Diana, and Athena and a hosted festival called "The Skieria".

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