COCHRANE, George, Esq. Wanderings in Greece, vols I-II, London, Henry Colburn, 1837.
George Cochrane arrived in Greece in January 1827 together with his uncle, admiral Thomas Cochrane, who was in command of two British steamships destined to reinforce the Greek fleet in the War of Independence. The first part of his two-volume account includes descriptions of the social, political and war situation in Greece in the last year of the war, together with Cochrane's meetings and conversations with Kolokotronis, Mavrokordatos, Tombazis, Kanaris and Kapodistrias, and his visits to Hydra, Poros, Nafplio, Argos and Athens. Cochrane returned to the Greek state twice, in 1834, and in 1835-36, with the project of setting up a steamship line which would connect Piraeus, Marseille, Malta, Naples, Istanbul, Syros, Izmir and Alexandria.
The edition is enriched with lithographs based on the author's drawings. The text remains one of the most interesting in its kind. Without being a profound political analysis, it paints a very precise picture of the public life of several personalities, mainly politicians, and offers penetrating insight into Greek society in the first years of the foundation of the Greek State.
Written by Ioli Vingopoulou