Captain Corelli's Mandolin - MORE TRAGEDY

Three years after the massacre at Cephalonia (Kefalonia), Greece was in turmoil due to a civil war. This poster depicts a pro-monarchist point-of-view regarding the country’s referendum of September 1, 1946. It urges support of George II (whose second reign began on November 25, 1935 and ended on April 1, 1947). George was a paternal first-cousin to Queen Elizabeth II’s husband (Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh). Image online via Wikimedia Commons.


After foreign invaders left Greece, the war did not end. It merely took on a different character as Greek fought Greek in a civil war. The damage to the country and its people, between 1945-1949, was worse than the damage caused by World War II.

Partisans called andartes, largely members of ELAS, fought against the Greek government. Put differently, Greek civilians fought the Greek army.

That war remains a sensitive subject, with survivor and participant memories still vivid. (Louis De Bernieres, author of Corelli's Mandolin, has been severely criticized by partisans who say their portrayal in the book was, at best, unfair.)

One of the most devastating incidents of the Greek civil war involved innocent children. Babies were taken from families and sent to other countries, including the United States. By some estimates, as many as 28,000 children were involved.

The story of Eleni, a mother who was executed for trying to protect her children, has been movingly told by her son, Nicholas Gage. Those on the left side of the Greek conflict say that book does not give a totally accurate picture of those days. Those on the right say it does.

Four years after the Greek Civil War ended, Cephalonians endured one of the worst earthquakes that has ever rocked their island. Nearly every town except Fiskardho, in the north, was demolished. Taking the damage in stride, the people rebuilt.

Today, as it was for the poet Lord Byron—who tried to help Greece gain its independence in the early nineteenth century and whose poems are still among the most-popular in the world—Cephalonia retains its reputation as a kind of paradise.

There remains one loose end to tie-down in this story. We have likely found the real Captain of the Acqui Division, Amos Pampaloni. But did the fictional Captain Corelli have a namesake? If so, might that namesake shed light on the ending of the novel (which is very different from the ending of the film)?

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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5183stories and lessons created

Original Release: Aug 01, 2001

Updated Last Revision: Jul 27, 2019

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"MORE TRAGEDY" AwesomeStories.com. Aug 01, 2001. Aug 22, 2019.
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