200 Years since the Greek Revolution: HUMANISTIC PHILHELLENISM and Its Main Characteristics in the Visual Arts (1821-2021)

Dr Markella-Elpida Tsichla


Philhellenism was a movement, its origins dating back to ancient times, that played a key role in the 19th century and the outbreak of the Greek Revolution in 1821. The contribution of military philhellenism to the liberation struggle of the Greeks is well known, but equally important was the humanitarian philhellenism, manifested in the arts, literature and science and influenced the public opinion of Europe and America, preparing the ground for the perception of this Struggle as a Sacred Struggle against oppression and barbarism. The images painted by famous and anonymous artists back then reflect the atmosphere of that time and the feeling that this uneven battle of the Greeks against the Ottoman Turks was a symbol of the fight against all barbaric behavior, such as oppression, lack of freedom, the rise of the slaveholders, and questioning religious faith. These are images that generally express the desire of European public opinion, in accordance with the teachings of the Enlightenment, to defend human rights with the necessary respect for secularism and ethnic origin. At the same time, the dominant spirit of the time highlights the connection between Greece and Antiquity, as classical culture had a great influence on the artists and intellectuals of the time. As a result, the images with reference to the Greek Revolution and its protagonists have many characteristics that take the form of symbols either of the conflict between different cultures with reference to religious differences or the connection of modern and classical Greece. Undoubtedly, the artistic movement of Romanticism played a key role to all this and Eugene Delacroix emerged as the embodiment of this perception.

Full Text:


DOI: https://doi.org/10.22158/wjeh.v4n1p25


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright © SCHOLINK INC.  ISSN 2687-6760 (Print)  ISSN 2687-6779 (Online)