On May 9, 1822, just fourteen months after the start of the Revolution and a few days after the conclusion of the first National Assembly, the first decree stipulating the renaming of a settlement becomes the fifteenth law to be ratified by the newly-established Greek state. This first official act of toponymic change ushered in a long period of modifications to the map of the Greek territories. Over the following two centuries, place name changes directly corresponded with political and administrative reforms, broader geopolitical changes, border disputes and the ensuing population movements. Similar practices were also adopted by neighbouring countries during the same period.
This volume constitutes a dialogue between historians, linguists, and political scientists who study Greece, Italy, Albania, and Turkey, as they endeavour to spotlight, each from their own scientific perspective, the complexity of the toponymic issue during the 19th and 20th century. Through this interdisciplinary approach, the volume aims to trace the common threads and typologies of administrative and political action which permeate the issue of toponymic change by connecting attitudes and practices across geographical borders and historical periods, while, in the process, highlighting the priorities determined by nation-states, as these are reflected on the modifications of the map, as well as the political and social dimensions of an administrative practice which transformed space both literally and symbolically.
This volume comprises contributions by Emilio de Albentiis, Maria Arvaniti, D. Dimitropoulos, Joost Jongerden, Vasilis Koutsoukos, Eleni Kyramargiou, Doris K. Kyriazis, Eleni Papadopoulou, Giannis Papakondylis, Francesco Scalora, Michalis Festas.