Langadia

 

Lagadia Arcadia is a village in Gortynia, built on a steep mountain slope. It is the homeland of the Deligiannai, but also of other fighters of 1821. Famous throughout Greece were the Lagadin builders, with a rich architectural tradition, which is evident in the village itself. In ancient times, the road leading to Olympia, where the Olympic Games were held, passed through the area. It has been characterized as a traditional settlement.

 

The village is located 65 km NW. of Tripoli and 80 km east of Pyrgos. It is built on a slope of 70 degrees, at an altitude of 966 meters and runs through three streams. The village is defined by the national road in Pano and Kato Mahalas. Kato Mahalas is a ravine, in which flows the Lagadian river, or Tuthoa according to Pausanias, which is a tributary of Ladonas.

History
There are various legends about the founding of Lagadia. One of them mentions that during the Frankish period (early 13th century) the craftsmen who undertook the construction of the castle of Akova, inhabited the present area of ​​Lagadia, where they continued to practice the art of the builder from generation to generation. This theory is not generally accepted due to the relatively large distance between the two sites.

Another version comes from the Deligiannai, well-known kotzambasides of the area. According to her, one of their ancestors, Petros Litinos, was the secretary of Aydin Aga during the occupation of the Peloponnese by Mohammed II the Conqueror. For his services he received land in the area of ​​Gortynia, where he lived. His descendant, priest Ioannis Litinos is considered a settler of the Upper Neighborhood of Lagadia.

Another view is that the village was probably created around 1500 by the merger of small settlements in the area with the main settlements of Crespi and Draina, which are today within the village. The village (or a part of it) is mentioned for the first time perhaps with the name "Lagadia" in an Ottoman settlement of 1570, where it seems to have 46 houses. In the same store, Draina is noted as an independent settlement with 44 houses. In 1698-1699, the 8 families of the neighboring settlement of Arvitsa are added, which increase the population of Lagadia to 207 people during the 1700 census.

Revolution 1821
In Lagadia the revolution was proclaimed on March 23, 1821. On April 1, 1821, Kotzambasis Kanellos Deligiannis ordered the massacre of all the Turks of Lagadia (40 families) and the burning of the mosque. In all, about 300 unarmed men (disarmed a few days earlier), women and children were slaughtered. This resulted in terrorizing the inhabitants of the surrounding area who, fearing retaliation, joined the side of the Deligiannai, who had now fallen into the disfavor of the Turks and needed support. In 1825, Ibrahim, having conquered most of the Peloponnese, enters the leave from the inhabitants of Lagadia and sets up his headquarters for a few days in the house of the Deligianni. The offer of the Lagadins in the struggle of 1821 was great. Apart from their personal participation (Giannis Theofilopoulos "Karavogiannis", Papastathoulis, Thanasis Kintzios, Michalis Kintzios, Ioannis Christodoulopoulos), they also helped with the construction of many important fortifications.

19th - 20th century
After the liberation, the people of Lagadia engaged almost exclusively in the profession of builder, plowing the whole Peloponnese in groups (bunches) building houses, bridges, schools, fountains and churches. Their reputation is spreading fast and they are becoming more sought after. This results in a period of great prosperity. Lagadia became the largest city in Arcadia after Tripoli with a population of almost 7,000 in the 1890s. But in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, much of the population was forced to emigrate in search of better fortune, mainly in the United States. Many still leave after World War II for Athens and Pyrgos. The result of external and internal migration is the shrinking population of Lagadia, which currently has about 700 inhabitants, of which few are permanent.

Sights
Apart from the landscape, the running waters, the traditional fountains and the bridges, important sights in Lagadia are the temples of Taxiarches and Timios Prodromos. They were both built in 1808 in a period of 40 days due to a time limit set by the Turks. The mansion of Deligianna is also preserved.