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Mostra, Thimiana – Customs of Chios Island

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Mostra revives in Thymiana village of Chios during the Carnival celebration every year. The Cultural Association of Thymiana under the auspices of Chios Municipality is committed for maintaining the custom, cultural heritage of Chios people.

Thymiana, signals the beginning of the Carnival celebration on Friday before Ash Monday, bringing Mostra. This special custom, dating back to an era when pirates dominated the Aegean Sea terrorizing the villagers, is in memory of those they fought for their rights to a better life.

It was Carnival period and the villagers were enjoying their feast when viglatores (=watchmen) send the signal to the village that pirates are approaching the shores, ready to invade the village with the sole purpose to spread the death and steal the wealth. It was then that the inhabitants of Thymiana decided to stand against the invaders. A big fight took place and the result was a stunning victory of Thymiana, leading to the crucifixion of the pirates at the central square of the village, in order for everyone to admire their accomplishment.

Traditional musical instruments (like payiavli and toubi) revive “Talimi” a traditional dance representing that fight.

The Friday’s feast (bringing Mostra) is full of fun where the youngers, wearing handcrafted masks (=moutsounaries) and dated clothes, are teasing their friends and relatives, walking around the village. It ends with a big “paniyiri” at the school’s backyard, a building worth visiting while on Thymiana, right next to the famous central church of the village.

On the last Sunday of Carnival celebration, the attendees of Mostra are attending the service at Agios Dimitrios and Agios Ioannis churches of Thymiana and then they are paying their respects to the dead visiting the graveyard of the village. Then, wearing traditional clothes, parade at the frenzy beat of Talimi and “Detos”, spreading fun to everyone.

A “paniyiri” at Karouli square of Thymiana is marking the end of Carnival celebration at Thymiana, with live music and lots of food and drink!

When is Mostra:

February 2017, Friday 24th & Sunday 26th

March 2016, Friday 11th & Sunday 13th

Where is Mostra:

Thimiana village of Chios […read more about Thimiana]

Images of Mostra:

Video of Mostra:

Courtesy of Kostas Anagnostou from chiosphotos.gr

 

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