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The magic culture of Tinos ...  

DOVECOTES

- The medieval Europe was very interested in the breed of the doves, creating special lows. Venetians came to Tinos in 1207 and left in 1715 giving their domination to the Turks.
- It is possible that the history of the dovecotes started from that period. The breed of the doves was a custom to other Cycladic islands too who were under the Venetian Domination, such as Myconos, Sifnos and Andros.
- However, no historical document confirms that that was the way of things. Even the Venetian visitors who visited Tinos before the 19th century do not report anything relevant. It also very surprising that neither the Venetian inspectors report something about the doves and their presence.
- According to the files of the Catholic Churches, the eldest dovecote was built in 1726. This is obvious from a will of a Catholic priest who gives to someone else his own dovecote.
- According to the Venetian Laws The ownership of a dovecote is an exclusive right of the 69 feudal lords of the island, so the ownership of the dovecotes by the rest of the citizens is impossible during that period.
- After 1715 the inhabitants of the island could built their own dovecote whether they had a piece of land and whether they could afford the costs of its keeping. During that period, it seems that, the ownership of a dovecote was assign of wealth. The competition for the best and most beautiful dovecote was a truth. So, the decoration and the size of the dovecote was the best solution
- Through that process, the dovecotes inspired the numerous artists and prepared the presence of the major Tinian artists who, even till nowadays, continue the tradition of their ancestors.
- Today, the dovecotes of Tinos constitute an architectonical phenomenon. Architects, Politicians and students from all over the world come to Tinos in order to admire, study and write their thesis on the dovecotes of Tinos.


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