The Duchess’ Tower/O Πυργος της Δουκισσας

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The ‘tourell Pentelli’ built by the Duchess of Placentias. Ο Πυργίσκος Tourelle της Δούκισσας Πλακεντίας στην Πεντέλη.

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It was built in 1846, but the construction was never completed. Χτίστηκε το 1846, αλλά η κατασκευή δεν ολοκληρώθηκε ποτέ.

When I took a photograph of this building I had no idea what the history of the building was. I decided to do a little research and was really surprised by what I found out. The building that I photographed is the ‘Tourelle Pentelli’ or ‘Pentelli Tower’ and it is located on Mt. Pentelli northeast of Athens. The construction on this building began in 1846, but there were many mishaps and it was never completed. The buildings’ purpose was to house the personell of the Duchess de Plasisance (1785-1854). It was one of many buildings that Sophie Barbé de Marbois, Duchesse de Plaisance constructed in Athens. Most Athenians in the 19th Century and up until 1950, only knew her as the Duchess of Placentias and they had no idea that she was American born. The Duchess was born in Philadelphia, USA and her father was a French Consul-General in the U.S. She was a great supporter of the Greek war of Independence, so she arrived in Greece in 1829 to help out.  She was very philanthropic and was much talked about at the time. She died in May of 1854 at the age of 69 and she is buried near the tower. There is a metro station in Athens named after her. The station is located on the land that once belonged to her.

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