The Permanent Exhibition of Coats of Arms can be seen in the building of the silicon warehouse, in the Venetian castle of Kythira. It was set up by the 1st Ephorate of Byzantine Antiquities and has been open to the public, from the summer of 2013. It is a collection of 17 seals of Venetian families but also local islanders (Kassimatis), as well as families of Orthodox bishops (Mormoris).
The coat of arms is a symbolic representation mainly of stone or marble, rarely in wood, placed by families of noble descent, usually over the main door of their home to give some prestige to their family. The use of ecopoints dates back to the years of feudalism in Western Europe to distinguish warriors in their battles and rivalries. These took the form of a seal in the 15th and 16th century and shown in decorated court or other official documents.
The use of coats of arms dates back to the years of feudalism in Western Europe to distinguish warriors in their battles and rivalries. In the 15th and 16th century it evolved in the form of a seal that was validated or decorated by a court or official documents. In Kythera, their use was established with the advent of the Venetians (13th century), a custom adopted by the Cythrians, proving the harmonious social coexistence between them.
The coat of arms is complex and consists of several elements. The most important is the shield, and bearing emblems – symbolic representations of the origin, virtues and historical feats of the carriers. Among the most famous emblems of the ecclesiastical greetings of Greece and Kythira, is the feathered lion of St. Marc, a well-known emblem of the Venetian Republic, which testifies to the many years of Venetian presence on the island. Typically, it is depicted holding the gospel open in his left paw, indicating that the building bearing the coat of arms was made in peacetime (eg. Venier).
The exhibition is divided into three thematic sections: a) Families of family branches, which include coats of arms belonging to the same family as variants in the heraldic representation; b) identity coats that are identified with specific families without any other variation in the heraldic representation; c) of the families of the bishops of Kythira, such as Bishop Mothromi, who carries the whispering symbol in the center of the coat of arms. This particular item belongs to the category of “whispering”, “speaking” or “present” coat of arms, because the emblem it carries shows similarity to its owner’s surname.
A lot of visitors have gone through the Museum, enriching their knowledge of the cultural heritage of our country, part of which is the coat of arms, as a material remnant of the past.
The museum exhibit gives the visitor the opportunity to discover the past, through the complete presentation of bilingual explanatory signs and brochures describing historical, social and folkloric elements of our island.
Τ.Κ. 80100, Chora at Kythera (Prefecture of Attiki)
Telephone: +30 2736039012
Daily (Closed on Mondays)
Full: €2, Reduced: €1
Special ticket package*: Full: €6, Reduced: €3 Valid for 3 days.
* Valid for the Archaeological Museum, the Byzantine Art Collection and the Coat of Arms Collection