Welcome to our countries!!

Click here to see map of Elefsina and here for a closer look at our school! A web presentation(ppt) of The Economic High School - HERE

Dracula Bookmarks

Targoviste - between myth and reality


Centuries ago, Vlad Tepes, a Romanian prince, became well known in Europe because of his bloody habit, impaling. For this reason, people called him Vlad the Impaler. One of the favourite cities to express this bloody wish, was Targoviste. That’s why, Vlad the Impaler has been associated with Dracula, and Targoviste as one of Dracula’s house.
How does it look Targoviste nowadays?

A very quiet town, the only army that makes noise is for the celebration of the town.

Αιώνες πριν, γράφουν οι Ρουμάνοι συνεργάτες μας, ένας αιμοσταγής ηγεμόνας της Βλαχίας, ο Βλαντ Τέπες, ήταν διαβόητος στην Ευρώπη για τη συνήθειά του να ανασκολοπίζει τους εχθρούς του. Ένα από τα κάστρα του, το κάστρο του Δράκουλα βρίσκεται στην πόλη μας, Ταργκοβίστε, σήμερα μια ήσυχη επαρχιακή πόλη. Ο μόνος στρατός που παρελαύνει είναι οι κάτοικοι κατά τις τοπικές γιορτές.
A feedback from Medeea Secretariat

© video made by Romanian students Click here to see Elefsina today and its mythological background. NOTE: Demeter, the ancient goddess of earth, had a special connection to our town. "Demeter" is the name of the ship with which Dracula travelled from Romania to England, in a most thrilling story within a story! Πατήστε εδώ για πληροφορίες για τη μυθολογική Ελευσίνα και την πόλη σήμερα. ΣΗΜ.: Στο βιβλίο, ο Δράκουλας ταξιδεύει από τη Ρουμανία στην Αγγλία με καράβι που ονομάζεται ΔΗΜΗΤΡΑ! Πρόκειται για τη θεά των Ελευσινίων μυστηρίων που δίδαξε την καλλιέργεια του σίτου και έδωσε ελπίδα για τη μεταθανάτια ζωή στους θνητούς!

eTwinning conference

For the article on the conference in the Greek local press, press here Πατήστε εδώ για το άρθρο περί Διάσκεψης στον τοπικό τύπο του Θριασίου Αττικής.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Wedding - common in Romanian and Greek Orthodox Church

Book reference: Bram Stoker's Dracula, Mina and Jonathan are married by the Anglican wedding ceremony, Jonathan recovering from a brain fever, Mina ecstatic on her marriage, despite the circumstances ""Lucy, the time has come and gone. I feel very solemn, but very,very happy. Jonathan woke a little after the hour, and all was ready, and he sat up in bed, propped up with pillows. He answered his 'I will' firmly and strong. I could hardly speak. My heart was
so full that even those words seemed to choke me."

In Eastern Orthodoxy, marriage is treated as a Sacred Mystery (sacrament), and as an ordination. And, like all ordinations, it is considered to be a martyrdom, as each spouse learns to die to him- or herself for the sake of the other. Like all Mysteries, Orthodox marriage is more than just a celebration of something which already exists: it is the creation of something new, the imparting to the couple of the grace which transforms them from a 'couple' into husband and wife within the Body of Christ.

Unlike Western Christianity, Eastern Orthodox Churches do not consider the sacramental aspect of the marriage to be conferred by the couple themselves. Rather, the marriage is conferred by the action of the Holy Spirit acting through the priest. Furthermore (and again, unlike in the West), no one besides a bishop or priest—not even a deacon—may perform the Sacred Mystery.

The external sign of the marriage is not the exchange of rings (which takes place at the betrothal, not at the marriage); rather, it is the placing of wedding crowns upon the heads of the couple, and their sharing in a "Common Cup" of wine. For this reason, the Orthodox name for the Rite of Marriage is "Crowning". Among the Greeks, the crowns will often be garlands; among the Romanians the crowns will usually be of gold, with an icon of Christ on the groom's crown and the Theotokos (Virgin Mary) on the bride's crown.
These crowns may be joined together by a ribbon. The sharing of the Common Cup is reminiscent of Christ's first miracle at the Wedding at Canna of Galilee, and symbolizes the transformation of their union from a common marriage, as the world knows it, into a sacred union. The wedding is usually performed after the Divine Liturgy, at which the couple will have received Holy Communion. Like all Sacred Mysteries, the bride and the groom must go to Confession before receiving it.
Divorce is discouraged, but sometimes out of economic (mercy) a marriage may be dissolved if there is no hope whatever for a marriage to fulfill even a semblance of its intended sacramental character. A lay member may remarry, if they obtain the blessing of their bishop to do so. However, in such a case, a different ceremony, the Rite of Second Marriage, which is less joyful and more penitential, sober and somber is used. This rite is also much shorter than the full Crowning—and in fact, no crowns are used. A third marriage is very much discouraged. This form is used only when both members of the wedding couple have been previously married, so as not to punish the innocent one.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Superstitions about the UNDEAD in the Balcans

Library comment:This is a medieval Greek folksong, about 9th century, showing how old the fables about undead people are in the Balcan area. It is in the school syllabus (A class, 16 year-olds)
It is about a family with ten children. Nine sons and one daughter. It was a very unfortunate family, because a disease happened and all the sons died. Their mother loved her daughter much more than her sons. Someday when the family was still happy, people had came from Babylon in order to take the daughter back to their country as a bride. In the beginning her mother couldn’t give her daughter up to the strangers. One of the sons, Konstandis, promised the mother that whatever happened, he would bring his sister back to her mother. Well, the mother was convinced and then she gave her approval. Then the disease killed the nine sons. Their mother went to the son’s grave, to complain about the promise. Suddenly Konstadis rose from the dead in order to fulfill his promise and he took his sister back to their lonely mother.
Vaggelis Fotiades, C class

Maia Morgenstern, Romania's celebrated actress, is performing along with Greek, Bulgarian, Albanian and Serbian actors the theatrical edition of The Dead Brother's ballad during March and April 2009. "Being Balcan is an intrinsic and important issue" says the actress who participated in Theodor Aggelopoulos's prized Ulysses Gaze and has played Lycistrata for Michalis Kakoyiannis.
The Greek press hailed her as the actress with the international career and the pround Balcan heart.

Το τραγούδι του Νεκρού Αδελφού, η ελληνική εκδοχή του οποίου διδάσκεται στην Α Λυκείου σήμερα, έχει βαλκανικές ρίζες και έχει μελοποιηθεί από τον Θεοδωράκη, ενώ το Μάρτιο και Απρίλιο του 2009 ανεβαίνει στην Αθήνα σε θεατρική διασκευή σε πέντε βαλκανικές γλώσσες. Η σπουδαία Ρουμάνα ηθοποιός Μάγια Μόργκενστερν, "η ηθοποιός με τη διεθνή καριέρα και την περήφανη βαλκανική καρδιά" βεβαιώνει στο περιοδικό Κ της Καθημερινής, 21/3/2009, τεύχος 303, ότι το να είσαι Βαλκάνιος είναι κάτι εξαιρετικά πολύπλοκο και σημαντικό. Η ίδια έχει παίξει τη Λυσιστράτη του Κακογιάννη και έχει συμμετάσχει στο Βλέμμα του Οδυσσέα του Θεόδωρου Αγγελόπουλου.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Greek-Romanian Literary friendship

Nikos Kazantzakis (1883-1957), Panait Istrati (1884-1935)

Kazantzakis and Istrati met during the former’s trip to the Soviet Union in November 1927. Both were social reform enthousiasts, but their different way of seeing it tore them apart.Kazantzakis was too metaphysical, and Istrati took a materialistic view that his friend couldn’t cope with.
A second meeting the following year just widened the gap between them. They continued corresponding, however, and “Don Quixote” was written for Istrati.
Istrati visited Greece shortly after he had met Kazantzakis, to give a lecture on the Bolshevik Revolution, which caused a demonstration in Athens, and resulted in his deportation. During his stay, he visited left-wing patients with tuberculosis in an Athens hospital, being himself a patient, which didn’t go down too well with authorities. He died sick and alone in Bucarest.
Kazantzakis outlived him by 22 years. He mentions Istrati repeatedly in his works.

Here is an excerpt chosen and translated by Costas Papageorgiou, to match the photo of the friends in Athens.

"We entered a restaurant, we sat down. He then took a bottle of oil he wore around his neck as a charm and poured it in his food. Afterwards he took a box of pepper out if his vest pocket and threw in his rich meat soup.
-Oil and pepper, he said licking his lips. Just like Braila!
We dag in our food with an appetite. One by one, Istrati recalled the greek words he knew, clapping his hands like a child, crying:
-Welcome! Welcome back. How have you been?
He kept an eye on his watch. All of a sudden he stood up.
-It’s time to go.
He called for the waiter; he took four bottles of fine Armenian wine, filled his coat pockets with small packs of desserts, overfilled his tobacco box with cigarettes and off we went."
Nikos Kazantakis, A report to Greco

Μπήκαμε σ’ ένα ρεστοράν, καθίσαμε˙ έβγαλε από το λαιμό του, όπου είχε κρεμασμένο, σαν χαϊμαλί, ένα μποτιλάκι λάδι και περέχυσε το φαΐ του. ύστερα έβγαλε από την τσέπη του γιλέκου του ένα κουτάκι πιπέρι κι έριξε μπόλικο στην πηχτή κρεατόσουπα.[…] Φάγαμε με κέφι˙ ο Ιστράτη σιγά σιγά θυμόταν τα ελληνικά του και κάθε τόσο που ανέβαινε από τη μνήμη του μια λέξη χτυπούσε τα παλαμάκια σαν παιδί:
-Καλώς τη! Φώναζε σε κάθε λέξη˙ καλώς τη! Τι μου γίνεσαι;
Νίκος Καζαντζάκης, Αναφορά στον Γκρέκο.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

An alarming piece of news!

Here is our own Pericles and Vlad Tepes from madame Tussuad's wax museum.Sent by P. on his summer trip to England.

Η ατμοσφαιρική φωτο είναι από το μουσείο της μαντάμ Τυσσώ στο Λονδίνο. Ποιος φοβάται τον Βλαντ Τέπες;

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Greek - Romanian links

Although 400 years apart, they are considered as heroes in their countries. Athanassios Diakos, a Greek freedom fighter, was impaled by the Turks in 1821.
Vlad Tepes, a Romanian prince (Dracula), born 1431,kept the Othoman Turks away from his land. He impaled thousands.
This manner of execution survived in the Balcans for centuries, causing Westerners to consider the area rather barbaric. The notion is echoed in Bram Stoker’s “Dracula”, the book we are reading.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

What would you ask Dracula in an interview?

Shall we gather our questions from both groups here, and see what the answers would be!!?

helen karavanidou , 09-03-08, 17:03

The Romanian team asks and the Greek team answers as Dracula
Η Λέσχη Ανάγνωσης της Ρουμανίας παίρνει τη συνέντευξη και η ελληνική Λέσχη απαντά ως Δράκουλας.

1. How old are you really? Ποια είναι η πραγματική σας ηλικία;
I am as old as you can imagine me to be. Είμαι τόσο παλιός, όσο μπορείς να φανταστείς.
2. Do you have any relatives? Έχετε συγγενείς;
My family goes back to the Roman age. My father was Poplius Fabius Draculius and my mother was Sixtina Vampiria. Η οικογένειά μου ήταν ρωμαϊκής καταγωγής. Ο πατέρας μου ήταν ο Πόπλιος Φάβιος Δρακούλιος και η μητέρα μου η Σιστίνα Βαμπίρια.
3. What have you seen in your very long life? Τι έχετε δει στη μακρά ζωή σας;
I have seen what you haven’t and what you will never see.Ό,τι εσείς δεν έχετε ζήσει κι ούτε πρόκειται. Τα πάντα!
4. Why do you suck people’s blood? Γιατί πίνετε το αίμα του κόσμου;
People have hurt me and I take revenge in this fashion. Γιατί, όπως κάποτε με πλήγωσαν εκείνοι, έτσι τους το ανταποδίδω και τους πληγώνω πίνοντας το αίμα τους.
5. Do other vampires exist in the world apart from you? Υπάρχουν άλλοι Δράκουλες εκτός από εσάς;
Probably. There is talk about succubus es and incubuses. But I am quite unique. Μπορεί, αλλά εγώ είμαι μοναδικός.
6. Why do you want to transform other people into vampires, such as yourself?
Γιατί μεταμορφώνετε τον κόσμο σε βαμπίρ;
As a count, I need a court. Για να έχω, με λίγα λόγια, τους δικούς μου ανθρώπους.
7. Do you have any friends in our world? Έχετε φίλους στον δικό μας κόσμο;
You may not believe this, but I do… Μπορεί να μην το πιστέψετε, αλλά έχω.
8. Have you ever fallen in love? Έχετε ερωτευτεί ποτέ;
I am in love with my ego. Έχω ερωτευτεί το εγώ μου.
9. How do you transform a mortal into a vampire? Πώς μεταμορφώνετε έναν άνθρωπο σε βαμπίρ;
It is all in the blood. Δεν θα σας πω ακριβώς…Το μυστικό βρίσκεται στο αίμα…
10. What is your real name? Ποιο είναι το πραγματικό σας όνομα;
Vlad Tepes of the knightly order of Dracul. Βλαντ Τέπες του τάγματος του Δράκου.
11. Is your transformation painful? Είναι επώδυνη η μεταμόρφωσή σας;
I have become used to pain. Now I find it quite refreshing. Στην αρχή ναι αλλά τώρα το συνήθισα. Νιώθω σα να ξαναγεννιέμαι και το απολαμβάνω κάθε φορά.
12. Why do you prefer girls' blood? Γιατί προτιμάτε το αίμα νεαρών γυναικών;
It makes me young and strong again. Με κάνει νέο και δυνατό.
13. Is there any other way to satisfy your thirst for blood? Δεν υπάρχει άλλος τρόπος να ικανοποιήσετε τη δίψα σας για αίμα;
Yes, but I don’t care for it. Ναι, σίγουρα υπάρχει αλλά το μόνο που με ικανοποιεί είναι το αίμα του κόσμου.
14. What is the difference between girls’ and boys’ blood? Ποια είναι η διαφορά στο αίμα ενός αγοριού κι ενός κοριτσιού;
Sweetness vs. fire. Τα κορίτσια έχουν πιο γλυκό αίμα, των αγοριών είναι δυνατή η γεύση του.

Why does a female dracula feed on babies?

Greek answers: The younger the prey, the more they will remain young and beautiful(?)

helen karavanidou , 06-03-08, 13:57

I think that a female Dracula feed on babies because she needs pure and innocent blood that can't affect their human bodies. (by Oanaas)

What does Dracula symbolise?

Dracula symbolizes...(Greek students' answers)
Christina K.(17): The fear imposed by political or social power.
Nancy (16) and Christina F.(17): the isolated unsocial being
Maria (16), Costas (16) and Christina F. (17): the oppression of animal instincts inside us with a vengeance!
Eleni (17): the metaphysical, the unknown
Costas (16): the childish notion of punishment

helen karavanidou , 28-02-08, 17:31

Dracula symbolizes justice in a rough way. It should be give an example for the bad guys to know what will expect them if they want to do something bad.( Oanaas )

Carmen Radulescu , 12-03-2008, 21:10

Survey answers in Greece
14 library members aged 16-18 answered
21% has never seen a Dracula film.

Dracula symbolizes

Evil incarnated 60%
Fear 12%
Afterlife 7%
The metaphysical 7%
The erotic 7%
The upper class’s abuse of power 7%

Why does Dracula still thrill us?

We are charmed by his mystery 50%
We like to feel horror 29 %
He personifies our deepest desires 21%

Find out to what extent our students agree with Dracula commentators here

helen karavanidou , 19-04-2008, 21:46

Other answers from Romanian report Dracula represent the Evil and because of that the subject has been avoided for many persons. He has created a lot of ghost in the people’s mind. True or not, the myth stands up and it is a symbol of Romania. (Albert, 16) This myth scares by the association between the man and the demon. In reality Dracula doesn’t exist but in the people’s imagination he has taken different forms and he has influenced them in a bad way. (Jenny, 16)
All Evil in the world has been embodied in Dracula’s figure, by the reach imagination of the people. This simple name scares and makes your blood boil. When you walk on the street and you see a bat flying from a tree, you are sure it is Dracula. (Diana, 16)
If we consider Dracula as a image of the Evil, not a specific person, certainly we can say that we meet Dracula every day. It is easy to watch the TV, a movie or a news diary for realize that Dracula is everywhere. It represents the negative part of the mankind, which is responsible for the death forces (as Freud named, Thanathos). But, if we consider the circle of life, probably this part of us is paradox ally, a good one, because it allows a resurrection of life after period of time. That’s way Dracula it is represented as a vampire, as a person who is drinking the other’s blood, blood symbolizing the life. (Miruna, 16)
Carmen Radulescu , 13-06-2008, 20:25
In order to thoroughly understand the symbolism in 'Dracula' one must gain an understanding of two important social revolutions that were taking place at the time. The first social revolution involves the changing roles of women. During the time of the writing of 'Dracula', women were beginning to seek their own individual power. For many years they had been oppressed and repressed by men. Women of the time had no right to vote, had little access to education, and were relegated to menial tasks around the house. Men were the movers and the shakers of the time. Men delved into politics, owned factories and made the wheels of Democracy turn. Women noticed these changes and had a desire to be a part of them, but were not received with open arms by their male counterparts."
Carmen Radulescu , 18-06-2008, 20:50

Why doesn't Dracula appear in the mirror?

Anonymous said...

I want to answer to that question with mirror. I think that Dracula can't appear in a mirror because it is a creature of dark. Even so count Dracula can stay awake day it is just for a while, not for whole day. Dracula is a vampire who loves dark, not the light. Mirror reflects the creatures which belong tot the both worlds: the light world and the dark world. What do you thing??
March 4, 2008 9:41 PM
Alyna said...

I want to answer to the question with mirror.I think that Dracula can't appear in the mirror because it is a dead person and it lives in his world.A world with strange things,with another vampires.Another reason is that Dracula is a vampire,a creature of the night.In the book,the count didn't has in the castle mirrors,Jonathan discovered this,when he came to Transylvania,to the count castle.
March 4, 2008 10:28 PM
alyna said...

"Dracula" ,of Bram Stoker,is a book with happy ending it describes another part of the strange Romania,where there are:vampires,which could transform other persons in vampires,but in the same time they could be disturbed as the people shack quietly and less victims. This book symbolize strange/acquaintance , love/hatred , happiness/suffering.
March 9, 2008 1:03 PM
Anonymous said...

Greek students: 1. It would scare the hell out of him to see himself!
2.He is trapped between existence and nonexistence. He is a soulless body
3.He didn't wish to "see" the truth
March 21, 2008 9:30 AM

I think that Dracula can't appear in a mirror because it is a creature of dark. Even so count Dracula can stay awake day it is just for a while, not for whole day. Dracula is a vampire who loves dark, not the light. Mirror reflects the creatures which belong tot the both worlds: the light world and the dark world. (By Oanaas)