Thursday, 17 March 2011

The Douglas column

  The Douglas column can be found on the intersection of Alexandras and Dimokratias Avenue dominating the area which surrounds it. It is build in 1843 but originally was placed near Aktaion cafe. In 1907, because of fears of possible collapse of the ground, it was moved to the present day location. 

  The column itself is a work of honour to Howard Douglas, who was the Lord High Commissioner the Ionian islands from 1835 until 1841 and responsible for founding Ionian Bank, Ionian gymnasium, the prison and constructed the psychiatric and general hospital as well as many roads.
  At the four sides of the column's base, copper anaglyphs ornate the monument made by corfiot painter and sculptor Ioannis-Vaptistis Kalosgouros (1794-1878). There is one depicting Douglas' own coat of arms, one with a diadem, one depicting Britannia holding a olive branch and a corn full of goods sitting on an ancient corfiot boat and a last one with a commemorative text written in archaic greek by Christophoros Filitas, an Ionian Academy professor of philosophy. The text commemorates all the good things Howard Douglas did for Corfu and express the gratitude of local people towards him.

Britannia holding a branch of olive tree and a corn full of goods
The commemorative text in archaic greek
Douglas coat of arms
The diadem

  The momument is known colloquially as "η κολώνα του Ντούγκλα" ("Ι kolóna tu Dúgla"). It gave its name to the whole area around it. Unfortunately, like most of corfiot monuments, the columns needs a clean up and the copper anaglyphs need to be restored and protected against corrosion made by humidity and sea salt.

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