Rhodes Town, Rhodes, Greece

April 3, 2017 Paul Groves

Day 88 of 111. Rhodes Town, Greece.

Rhodes is an island in Greece, but it is also a city in Rhodes. There is also an ancient city of Rhodes inside the modern city of Rhodes. We visited this ancient city and a large building called the Palace of the Grand Masters. The original building was a fortress for the city with three moats and some of the walls were several meters thick. Most of the original fortress was destroyed and a building was rebuilt by the Italians when they occupied the city. The plan was to make this the summer palace of Mussolini, but while the building was finished and furnished, the start of World War II put an end to plans of a summer palace and the building was never lived in. It is currently a museum. Many of the mosaics in the floor are still intact, but much of the furniture and statues that were in the palace have been removed by various countries.

The building and the medieval street (see the bottom picture) show the influences of France, Greece, and the Ottoman Empire. This street (called the Street of the Knights) is the most authentically medieval street and now houses several foreign consulates. One interesting idea that I learned was that many of the statues that were carved were done without faces. As one emperor replaced another, it took too long to make an entirely new statue, they simply replaced the face in the statue. This was apparently also done with Greek statues which is why so many of them are found without heads… the heads were replaced from time to time.