But in 1453 the Imperial city fell before the assault of Sultan Mohammed; and before his death the conqueror eliminated all the other Romaic and Latin principalities from Peloponnesos to Trebizond, which had survived as enclaves to mar the uniformity of the Ottoman domain.

Now at the beginning of the truly historical period, in the eighth century B. C., all this is changed. The Greeks as a people are called Hellenes; the Dorians rule in Peloponnesos, while their lands are tilled by Argive Helots; and the Achaians appear only as an insignificant people occupying the southern shore of the Corinthian Gulf. How this change took place we cannot tell.

All that the islanders could do was to take off the survivors in their boats; and when they dispersed to their ports in autumn, the Ottoman ships came out again from the Dardanelles, sailed round Peloponnesos into the Korinthian Gulf, and destroyed Galaxídhi. A still greater catastrophe followed the reopening of naval operations next spring.

But the spectacle before us is unfamiliar, and most of the old landmarks have been swept away. By the middle of the ninth century A.D., the Imperial Government had reduced the Peloponnesos to order again, and found itself in the presence of three peoples.

The Venetians had never lost hold upon the 'Ionian' chain of islands Corfù, Cefalonia, Zante, and Cerigo which flank the western coast of Greece, and in 1685 they embarked on an offensive on the mainland, which won them undisputed possession of Peloponnesos for twenty years. Venice was far nearer than Turkey to her dissolution, and spent the last spasm of her energy on this ephemeral conquest.

For example, Kalamata, the economic outlet for the richest part of Peloponnesos, and the fifth largest port in the kingdom, was and still remains a mere open roadstead, where all ships that call are kept at a distance by the silt from a mountain torrent, and so placed in imminent danger of being driven, by the first storm, upon the rocks of a neighbouring peninsula.

Burgundian barons, Catalan condottieri, and Florentine bankers snatched the Duchy of Athens from one another in bewildering succession, while the French princes of Achaia were at feud with their kindred vassals in the west of the Peloponnesos whenever they were not resisting the encroachments of Romaic despots in the south and east.

Peloponnesians and Armatoli, Kolokotronists and Kolettists, alternately appointed and deposed subservient national assemblies and governing commissions by naked violence, which culminated in a gratuitous and disastrous attack upon the French troops stationed in Peloponnesos for their common protection.

In November 1820 the veteran soldier Khurshid was appointed to the pashalik of Peloponnesos to hold the Greeks in check and close accounts with Ali. In March 1821, after five months spent in organizing his province, Khurshid felt secure enough to leave it for the Yannina lines. But he was mistaken; for within a month of his departure Peloponnesos was ablaze.

The vitality of the national movement resided entirely in the local communes. It was they that had found the fighting men, kept them armed and supplied, and by spontaneous co-operation expelled the Turk from Peloponnesos. But if the co-operation was to be permanent it must have a central organization, and with the erection of this superstructure the troubles began.