New museum with rare items of Lord Byron, other war heroes to open in Athens
- Several rare items dating to the 1821 Greek revolution will go on a virtual display in Athens
- Two key Greek museums are also holding exhibitions to mark the revolution against Turkish rule
- Benaki Museum earlier in March opened an eight-month exhibit with over 1,200 items
A new museum dedicated to the Philhellene foreign volunteers, who fought and died for Greece, is set to be inaugurated in Athens next month that will feature contemporary paintings, weapons, ornaments and personal items of the fighters, among them celebrated 19th century poet Lord Byron, reported AFP. This month, several rare items dating to the 1821 Greek revolution will go on a virtual display since bicentenary events have been scaled back due to the pandemic.
Museum founder Constantinos Velentzas, a private collector and IT entrepreneur said, "The Philhellenic movement seduced all social classes...it was a vertical and horizontal movement without precedent. We are preparing a 3D virtual tour...we have to address a wide public that is not only based in Greece."
Items to be put on display include Byron's weapons, a letter by American revolutionary war hero and French aristocrat the Marquis de Lafayette, early drawings of the Greek revolutionary flag, and the logbook of a warship that participated in the pivotal naval Battle of Navarino that led to Greek independence.
Two key Greek museums are also holding exhibitions to mark the revolution against Turkish rule. Greece's National Gallery is set to reopen on March 24 following an extensive eight-year renovation that more than doubled its display capacity, while the Benaki Museum earlier in March opened an eight-month exhibit with over 1,200 items, its largest ever, on Greek history from 1770 to 1870.